Tuesday, January 20, 2009

A Cautionary Note

While watching the inaguration of the 44th US President, I've been scouring the web for value buys of good companies. Companies that are:
  • Based in NA
  • Stocks are fairly liquid (good trading volume)
  • Strong book values
  • Strong earnings
I've noticed many young investors (not from a finance background) making statements thinking that it would be a good time to get into the market (as early as a few months ago) after the big crashes. However, if recent history is any indication, just because stocks are off their 52 week highs doesn't mean they'll they can't drop further. Don't fall into the confirmation bias trap!

I've been looking at stocks across the board and the majority of them seem to be "adequately" valued (which in this economic situation is still rather optimistic). Dumping your money in the market now in the hopes of making a profit from a big recovery is a bit premature at this point. Do your homework!

There are a lot of stocks that I saw which I would rate Hold (but didn't bother, because a Hold rating doesn't really inspire any form of action... Just as a point of information).

My advice: Keep a bunch of stocks on a Watch List, stay current and pre-compute a buy price so when the time comes, you have an relatively objective and unemotional reference point for when you need to make a buy / sell decision.

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