Email To Clients
Today we took defensive action in your portfolios consistent with our long standing strategy based on the relationship of the S&P 500 and its 200 day moving average (DMA). The idea is that this can help avoid the full brunt of large declines. This decline has been very fast but not unprecedented. This is a listing of past similarly fast declines. The best outcome would be that today's trade turned out to be unnecessary because the market snapped back and then rocketed higher.
The point is that there have been at least nine other instances of this sort of panic and every time the market went to a new high.
This next one is the panic from 2014 over the Ebola virus.
So this is an example of a medically related panic that not everyone might even remember that quickly snapped back and of course the markets when to new highs and kept going.
Very bad Februaries have happened before, and this was what happened subsequently. This guarantees nothing for March 2020 but again makes the point that as far as the market is concerned there is nothing new here.
If you're older than me (I am 53) then you've been through more of these than I have. If you're my age or a little younger, you've been through several of these. They certainly are uncomfortable but we know how they play out. The panic selling stops at some point, often for no reason at all, then it starts to go back up and eventually makes a new high. The only variable is how long that all takes. The best thing we can do is be disciplined and stick to our investment process which accounts for today's trade. The worst thing we can do is succumb to the emotions that panics can sometimes trigger.