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How to Time the Markets Like an Investing Pro - October 08, 2019

Zacks Equity Research

Is the ability to time the markets more of a data-driven science or a 'gut - feeling' art?

Indeed, even among those investors who don't try to consistently time the markets, many think they can still call a top and act opportunistically. It's at these times when an investor who speculates often sits on the sidelines and looks for better opportunities to put money into the market.

Individual investors who focus their efforts on timing the market typically miss chances. For example, many investors have overlooked chances to benefit from buying the Retail-Wholesale stocks at the first opportunity, by attempting to buy them during a pullback only to see these stocks accomplish new unsurpassed highs: American Eagle Outfitters, Inc. (AEO), Asbury Automotive Group, Inc. (ABG), Advance Auto Parts, Inc. (AAP), Amazon.com, Inc. (AMZN), Tecnoglass Inc. (TGLS)

Investment emotional triggers (fear and greed) can lead to costly mental mistakes by investors who typically fall into the trap of being a market follower instead of a market leader.

Accomplished market timing requires three key components: 1) A dependable sign of when to get in and out of stocks. 2) The capacity to act upon signals quickly and accurately. 3) Have the stomach to act on market signals, no matter how counterintuitive the move may be.

Many investors think of market timing success as a win or lose proposition. But there is a less notable, rather straightforward, successful market timing approach that has been utilized effectively time after time by astute investors like Warren Buffet.

Rule 1: Why trying to time the tops and bottoms of the market is a dead end.

Surrendering the objective to time the tops and bottoms gives you the adaptability to benefit and increase your odds to secure profits over the long-term, even if your calls aren't always right.

Rule 2: Try not to sell amid little crashes - instead exploit the opportunity by buying.

Warren Buffett has made his fortune based of this straightforward guideline. He cautions not to sell during little crashes, and encourages enduring them by concentrating on the long haul.

There is a key distinction between a small correction and a market crash. The theory is that if you like and bought a stock at a previous valuation prior to the correction, you should love the opportunity to this same at a steep discount since the underlying fundamentals are most likely still intact. Warren Buffett takes this idea one step further and often goes on a buying spree when markets turn, essentially buying additional shares of his top stock picks at a big discount and listening to his own advice, 'Be fearful when others are greedy and greedy when others are fearful.'

When It Comes to Trading Your Retirement, A Risk Adjusted Trading Strategy Should be Followed

It's only human that many succumb to greed and try and game the system by timing the market. But, think about this: Nobel Laureate William Sharpe found in 1975 that a market timer would need to be precise 74% of the time to beat a passive portfolio. Indeed, even a slight outperformance most likely wouldn't justify the efforts - and given that even the specialists for the most part come up short at it, market timing shouldn't be your exclusive methodology for investing, particularly when it comes to building your retirement nest egg.

Chasing alpha, outsized, short - term returns through market timing and other high - risk bets is acceptable only within a small part of your investable resources, however for your long - term retirement assets a 'risk-adjusted' investment discipline is what largely bodes well.

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American Eagle Outfitters, Inc. (AEO) : Free Stock Analysis Report
 
Asbury Automotive Group, Inc. (ABG) : Free Stock Analysis Report
 
Amazon.com, Inc. (AMZN) : Free Stock Analysis Report
 
Advance Auto Parts, Inc. (AAP) : Free Stock Analysis Report
 
Tecnoglass Inc. (TGLS) : Free Stock Analysis Report
 
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