There are three major flaws when investing in the stock market: Investing based on a portfolio's track record, investing using an approach that relies on market timing or stock picking, and investing based on your emotions.
What so many retirees and investors don’t understand is that the stock s and investments that are sold most often in the market are “one-size-fits-all” plans not catered to a specific person, their goals, and needs. These cookie-cutter plans, which are often prepackaged and canned-constructed, are the easiest and most common way retirees “plan” for their retirement based on what many financial professionals advise. But is this really the best solution for a peaceful and happy retirement?
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Humans are innately emotional, and the stock market preys on our emotions, leading many to make rash decisions when it comes to their finances. We get caught in the ups of the market, and often forget to think about the downhill slopes that follow. Emotions are the reason so many investors fail in their plans and strategies.
The media doesn’t help our sentiments lessen at all. The media seems to magnify our instincts, emotions and perception biases to the point that our investment decisions may be affected. This is why it is so important to have a licensed financial professional to steer you in an unattached direction and to help walk you through your financial options and your history.
I have noticed that many of my clients are more concerned with loss and keeping what they have instead of the amount of their return. Many advisors and retirees are too distracted by the first two phases of financial life, which are accumulation and preservation. Don’t get me wrong; it is critical to accumulate your savings and preserve your assets, but we often forget about the third and final phase, which I consider to be the most important: Distribution.
Putting some money in the stock market isn’t bad, but your portfolio should be diversified to include other money management tools. Don’t just gamble your savings in the market; utilize fixed products to create guaranteed income. I understand that retirees are concerned with putting their money in fixed products because of the limited gain, however the return is much higher in the long run, thanks to the guarantee that they won’t lose money. But isn’t exchanging interest for zero losses due to the market and inflation worth it, especially when inflation will only get worse?
To put this into perspective, I turn to the Rule of 100. This rule tells us to lock in any income you need in the future, and then use a portion of what’s left to invest in a scientifically managed portfolio. This is the best of both worlds, a win-win for retirees who want a safe and secure retirement with some growth here and there.
Investing is an emotional rollercoaster, but it doesn’t need to be the biggest and tallest coaster around. Your investment road to retirement should be a smooth ride, with a little excitement along the way. The best way to ensure a safe journey is to meet with a licensed and professional financial professional who can coach you all the way to your desired lifestyle, without emotions setting up a roadblock.