As a parent, I’ve often given my kids and even my grandkids advice, only to have them turn around and do what they wanted in the first place. Most times, they realize I might know best and have their best interests at heart in my advice, even if they don’t want to hear it at the time.
It’s the same for clients from time-to-time. In an ever-changing stock market, it’s instinctual for clients to react impulsively on their emotions and make what they think is the best move. However, it’s important to take a holistic view of your financial goals and see the big picture instead of reacting on instinct to a specific short-term event. With that said, here are some important financial considerations that clients typically don’t want to hear – but should listen to: trust the advice of a financial professional. And here’s why:
- "Time in" the market has historically been better than trying to "time" the market. It’s human nature for clients to not want to hear this. They can see what’s constantly happening in the markets in real-time on TV, online and other platforms. That makes it difficult for them to adhere to their financial plan through large downturns for fear that this might be the time when things don’t recover. Of course, past performance doesn’t guarantee the market will always recover.
- There are emotions tied to the money clients have accumulated during years and years of hard work and saving. We find that clients often want to react to negative news, making them question if they should sell when the going gets tough.
- Our clients’ portfolios are well-diversified, according to their goals, time horizon and risk tolerance. They are not gaining and losing at the same rates that individual indexes, like the DOW or NASDAQ, are gaining or losing.
- In addition, selling during a down period locks in losses that they will need to gain even more to hit the break-even point when they re-enter the market. We invest for our clients with only as much risk as they need to help reach their long-term goals, knowing that the markets will rise and fall constantly.
Even though these are tough conversations, financial professionals have bigger picture financial goals in mind as they recommend to stick to a financial plan with confidence, even when times are tough. As I tell my kids, mother knows best; and nine times out of ten, so does your financial advisor!
Regina Beatty, CFP®, CRPC®, CBEC, private wealth strategist with Heritage Financial Consultants, LLC and registered representative of Lincoln Financial Advisors.