It goes without saying that this election year has been an experience. Now that the election is almost over, we can start to focus on other things. As I look back over the last several months, though, there is one question that came up more than others, “Should I make my portfolio more conservative because of the election?”
What people are really saying is, “I’m afraid and don’t know what this will do to my investments.” It can apply to a big election, something like the Brexit vote in England, or things like wars and sabre rattling among nations. It’s a natural human reaction to uncertainty. And a good reason to have a financial advisor. As a general rule, it’s best to keep emotions out of our financial decision-making. That’s where the advisor comes in.
A good advisor will already have your investments allocated to short and long term goals. Long term investments are by definition buffered from short term moves in the market because you won’t be needing those funds for many years. Short term investments are already invested conservatively to protect them from volatile markets.
Markets will react to things that happen in the world. And more often than not, they get the people on the news talking for a few days and then things revert back to what the market was doing before the big news. When you’re uncertain about how your investments will fare in different market scenarios, take the opportunity to call your advisor and find out what she or he thinks. These are normal reactions to world events and talking them through can be a great help.
Now my question is, whatever happens to all of those yard signs that come down after every election?