Holiday Q&A

I’m reaching into the mailbag to answer some of your pressing questions.

As originally published at Money Morning
Q&A on the Biggest Unstoppable Trends (and More)
By KEITH FITZ-GERALD, Chief Investment Strategist, Money Morning

Holiday markets tend to slow up a bit, and this week is proving to be no exception, so I thought we’d change things up a bit by diving into the mailbag and tackling a few of the fabulous questions you’ve asked recently.

Of course, as is our way around here, I’ll follow each answer with some actionable investment advice you can put to work right now as well as specific recommendations for your consideration.

Let’s get rolling with three questions related to our “Unstoppable Global Trends” that are very much in the news right now… Energy, Technology, and Warfare.

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    Building Good Trading Habits

    Here are some pointers to help maintain your portfolio on an upward trajectory.

    As originally published at Money Morning
    If You Only Use One Tactic in 2015, Use This
    By KEITH FITZ-GERALD, Chief Investment Strategist, Money Morning

    We talked earlier this week about the three bad investing habits that kill returns, and I asked you to let go of them in 2015.

    I can almost guarantee you’ll be better off for it – and so will your brokerage account.

    Now I want to show you what to do instead.

    This first tactic is absolutely priceless…

    Good Investing Habit No. 1: Have a Plan and Stick to It

    If you only use one investing tactic, please use this one.

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      Breaking Bad Trading Habits

      Let’s break down some of the bad behaviors we want to eliminate as investors that will help us navigate the markets coolly and calmly.

      As originally published at Money Morning
      Three Bad Investing Habits to Dump in 2015
      By KEITH FITZ-GERALD, Chief Investment Strategist, Money Morning

      The latest research from DALBAR is very graphic…

      Over the past 20 years, individual investors averaged a measly 2.53% a year, versus the S&P 500, which chalked up 9.02%. In other words, your average annual return was 6.49% less than what it could have been each year. Ouch.

      So what’s going on?

      When you look back over the last two decades, two things are readily apparent – a) that the markets have been rocky and b) that there’s plenty of blame to go around. The Fed, the big banks, bubbles, China, Washington, Wall Street, the ECB… it doesn’t matter. At some level, they’re all guilty.

      But you know what? Those two factors are actually NOT the primary causes that doom millions of investors to poor performance.

      THIS is the real culprit…

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        Twitter’s Share Price Will Trend Downward

        This social media darling is on my radar but for all the wrong reasons.

        As originally published at Money Morning
        The Only Social Media Play I’m Recommending Right Now
        By KEITH FITZ-GERALD, Chief Investment Strategist, Money Morning

        Earlier this week we talked about the secret I wish everybody knew when it comes to market timing, and took a look at one of the most valuable Total Wealth tools of all – the Put/Call Ratio. We covered actions you can take right now to maximize your returns.

        I also promised you a look at one great trade in particular involving a current social media darling. Today I’d like to keep that promise.

        If you’ve been with me for a while, you already know I don’t like social media stocks. They’re not hooked into our unstoppable trends (nope, not even Technology). Their products are “nice to have” instead of “need to have.” And most of them have no real way to make money.

        But that’s the thing about tactics…

        If you have the right trading tactics, you can squeeze profit out of any stock. Even ones you don’t like.

        In this case, I think betting on one stock’s failure may be far more profitable than betting on its success.

        I know that this may seem un-American or somehow unethical, but shorting a stock – that is, betting on its decline – is a killer tactic and can be a fabulously profitable tactic used to build your wealth.

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          Good Luck Trying to Time the Market

          Perfecting the market tops and bottoms is fool’s gold. But there are a couple of tools to assist you in gauging market sentiment.

          As originally published at Money Morning
          The Secret about Market Timing I Wish Everyone Knew
          By KEITH FITZ-GERALD, Chief Investment Strategist, Money Morning

          Many investors are trying to time the markets, especially lately with concerns over low oil prices, global woes, and Chinese growth in the headlines.

          I totally get where they’re coming from. The idea of picking market tops and bottoms is very seductive.

          But they may as well try to catch falling knives…

          The most recent DALBAR data shows that the return of investors trying to time the markets is a pathetic 1.9% a year over the past 20 years. Worse, they would have to be right a staggering 82% of the time just to match “buy and hold” returns, according to Nobel Laureate William Sharpe.

          Clearly market timing is one tactic that does not build Total Wealth. But here’s the secret.

          You’re much better off trying to understand sentiment – because that’s how you identify the best and the worst times to put your money to work and rack up the biggest gains.

          Today I want to teach you how to do that…

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            Oil Prices are Down, Is the Energy Sector Dead?

            The energy sector is alive and well when looked at from the “Unstoppable Trends” perspective.

            As originally published at Money Morning
            How to Invest When an “Unstoppable Trend” Seems to Be Over
            By KEITH FITZ-GERALD, Chief Investment Strategist, Money Morning

            When we started our time together here at Total Wealth, I identified six “Unstoppable Trends,” each of which has trillions of dollars behind it. I even went so far as to say that every dime you make for the next 10 years will be on that list of trends we’re tracking.

            Energy is on the list, with good reason.

            Global energy demand has increased every year since the beginning of time. It’s not just tied to human progress… it’s literally the fuel for it. No wonder it’s turned out more millionaires (and billionaires) than perhaps any other investing sector there is.

            Yet in the last five weeks, something very unusual has happened.

            Brent Crude – the most visible proxy for the state of energy markets – has dropped by more than 18% in just five weeks, going from $85.00 per barrel to a recent low of $69.50 per barrel, a four-year low. And the downturn is still in full swing, leading many investors to conclude that energy investing is a dead end.

            You can certainly understand why they’d think that way… the Middle East is going up in flames, OPEC has started a badly miscalculated price war, and supply is plentiful, with the U.S. about to become the world’s largest petroleum producer thanks to fracking and shale.

            I’ve gotten more than a few emails asking this.

            Is energy still an “Unstoppable Trend?”

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