Articles Posted in the " BDX " Category

  • Don’t Let Bull Market Convince You That You Are Smart

    Don’t Let Bull Market Convince You That You Are Smart

    By Vitaliy Katsenelson, CFA
    February 24, 2007

    Lately I’ve been getting this powerful feeling that everything I touch turns to gold. Every time I buy a stock, it goes up. Did I finally figure out the stock market game? Did I find a secret to Will Rogers’ advice? Buy stocks that go up, and if they don’t go up, don’t buy them.

    No, I didn’t get much smarter, and my stock picking skills haven’t improved that much over the past year. I was simply a willing participant in the latest (cyclical) bull market. A bull market makes you feel smarter than you are the same way a bear market makes you feel dumber than you are. Feeling smart makes you do the opposite of what you should be doing. The euphoria of the golden touch is a dangerous thing because it can make you (and me) careless. We forget about risk since we haven’t seen it in a while and focus only on our rewards. You have to actively make yourself aware of the four-letter word R-I-S-K!

    How do you do that? My favorite way is to remind myself how “dumb” I am. I pull out an annual return report of a company on which I lost a boatload of money and masochistically try to read it from cover to cover, reliving my “dumbness.”