Market downturns are painful. It’s distressing to open your account statement and see the declines. But as so many of our successful clients remind themselves, “It’s not a loss unless you sell out.”
My wife and I generally agree about money. We both want to give generously to our church and other charities, we both want to save at least 15% of our income toward retirement, and we both want to have our mortgage paid off in less than 9 years (which will have been less than 15 years from when we bought our home together).
I recently helped my mother purchase a 2015 SUV from a dealership. It was not a pleasant experience. Those of you that have purchased from a dealership know how long the process takes. Within 20 minutes of walking into the dealership, we were ready to pay all cash for the vehicle. We had done our research in advance, the test drive went well, and we were buying a reliable make and model.
Most of us have said or thought something like: “If only I had invested in __________, I would have so much money today.” Whether it’s the stock of Amazon, Google, Netflix, or Apple, the growth of these stocks over a long period of time is incredible. But when we examine the historical price movement of these stocks, we see that early investors have endured a bumpy ride.
Meir Statman is a Professor of Finance at Santa Clara University. He has gained increasing acclaim in the financial world for his work in the field of Behavioral Finance. What is behavioral finance? It studies the intersection of our behaviors (which are driven by our thoughts and feelings) and our money.