3rd Quarter 2020
We cannot change the cards we are dealt, just how we play the hand. ― Randy Pausch, The Last Lecture
Just recently, we heard Randy Pausch quoted on the radio and it reminded us of the wisdom he imparted on us with his last lecture. As in life, financial planning and investments require us to make decisions in the face of unknowns. The clarity is in accepting that you will never have a full set of information needed to make a completely informed decision. We rely on experience and knowledge to guide us in making recommendations that have a better chance for success.
As we move through the next few weeks, with the uncertainties of an election and fragile economy, it can be easy to lean back believing this is a “bad hand”. There are a couple of things to keep in mind as we “play out our cards”. First, research has shown that, over longer periods of time, elections have very little impact on the economy or the stock market. Second, although the outlook for the economy is uncertain, the capitalist system is flexible and continuously drives innovation. This can create enormous change and upheavals in our society that makes it difficult to see the progress.
Time must be explicitly managed, like money. You can always change your plan, but only if you have one. Ask yourself: Are you spending your time on the right things? ― Randy Pausch, The Last Lecture
We believe in plans. We especially believe in financial and retirement plans. Remember, plan is also a verb, and as your life evolves, you will need to reassess your plan and make changes. Allocating time to your retirement plan is easy to postpone as there is no impending deadline or requirement. But, taking the time to go through the exercise will help you to envision your future and make adjustments.
No matter how bad things are, you can always make them worse. ― Randy Pausch, The Last Lecture
As we have stated in the past, we tend to be our own worst enemy when it comes to investing. We have been hardwired through time to flee rather than fight. While this has allowed us to survive, it tends to make us sell at market bottoms and buy at market tops. It is best to try to avoid making any dramatic changes to your portfolio based on current events.
The news media doesn’t help with their barrage of negative stories designed to attract and maintain our attention. If you watch the news, try to incorporate the last five minutes, which usually focusses on a positive and uplifting story, in your outlook for the future.
We Are Here, Virtually
While we are still not meeting with clients face-to-face, we are meeting virtually so please do not hesitate to contact us with any questions regarding your account. We can video conference and share screens. Further, if your financial circumstances have changed, please call the office to set up an appointment to review your plan. We thank you very much for the trust you have placed in our firm.
Shoreline Financial Advisors, LLC