A popular stock market guru, Dennis Gartman, made a black and white call earlier this week, telling subscribers to his market newsletter that he was selling his stocks and rushing to the sidelines.
You should do the same thing unless you want to get creamed.
So is that what you should do? Jettison all your stocks and rush to the sidelines?
Not unless you have such overwhelming faith in Dennis Gartman's powers of prophecy that you're willing to bet your hard-earned savings on him.
Although Dennis Gartman is a perfectly respectable market pundit, he doesn't know anything that a lot of other market gurus don't know. And some of them, including CNBC's Jim Cramer, economics professor Nouriel Roubini, and Ray Dalio, the manager of a massive hedge fund called Bridgewater, think stocks are a great buy right now.
Mr. Gartman may ultimately be proven right. The stock market may crash. Mr. Gartman also has plenty of company in thinking that.
But the point is that no one knows what the market will do.
That's why the best strategy for most individual investors is to tune out the daily predictions offered by a host of very smart people whose business is to make such predictions. Tune this out, except for curiosity's sake, and invest in a diversified portfolio of assets (stocks, bonds, cash, real estate) that will do okay no matter what happens.
You won't get rich overnight this way. And it won't be particularly exciting.
But over the long haul, unlike many investors who try and fail to time the market's every move, you'll come out okay.
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