5 Days vs 5 Years

It's been a rough week in the stock market so far (as of Thursday's close). 

There are several more apocalypse-du-jour's on the menu - including tariffs (again), impeachment (again), and recession fears (again). There seems to be a pattern here. 

Long-time readers know that I'm not a fan of predicting markets or economic cycles, so I'll admit that any of these events COULD happen at any given point and COULD lead to a big market downturn.

So it seems like a good time to ask ourselves what we're focusing on - short term, or long term? 

Long-term investors know that investing in the stock market requires a certain degree of ability to handle downturns, to not panic when things don't move upward and onward as we want them to. 

We recognize that in order to achieve probable higher long-term returns, the price to be paid is short-term craziness at times. 

The chart below shows the S&P 500 return over the past 5 days. Yikes! That's not fun!
The chart below shows the same S&P 500 return over the past 5 years. Woo! That's more fun.
There's nothing magical about 5 days - or 5 years for that manner (or even the S&P 500 index). My point is one is short term, and one is long term. And as investors, we should always try our hardest to focus on the latter.
Additional Resources

1. The Belle Curve - Billionaires Should Exist (4 minute read)
I don't like meddling in politics, but this was an excellent article in response to an - umm, nevermind. 

2. Calibrating Capital - The Most Important Component of a Financial Plan (5 minute read)
A good financial plan is going to include many components - cash-flow, estate planning, tax analysis, insurance, and asset allocation to name a few. But the most important component is actually a characteristic: flexibility. In this article over at CalCap I unpack these thoughts some more, and offer up 5 areas of our finances we should consider to be more flexible within. 

3. Free(ish) Trading at Custodians - Personal video from me (1 minute)
Some big name custodians made some big time changes this week, including TD Ameritrade, where I custody most client accounts. TD Ameritrade will now waive all ticket charges (or commissions) charged on individual stocks and ETF's. Watch the video above for some details. Bonus: I love this tweet from Wes Gray summing up thoughts on what free-trading can potentially mean. Hint - it can be incredibly dangerous to some people. 

Can I ask for a favor? Reply back to this email with the last thing that made you smile. 

Mine was playing full-combat airplane rides with my kids. (Note: no one was seriously injured.) 

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