March 18, 2020

Nine days ago on March 9th was the 11th anniversary of the crescendo of global panic that marked the bottom of the bear market of 2007-09.

It is to me a thing of the most wonderful irony that the world has elected to celebrate this iconic anniversary with – you guessed it – another epic global panic attack.

As we all know by now, the precipitants of this decline have been (a) the outbreak of a new strain of virus, the extent of which can’t be predicted, (b) the economic impact of that outbreak, which is equally unknown, and (c) most recently, the onset of a price war in oil. (That last one is surely a problem for everyone involved in the production of oil, but it’s a boon to those of us who consume it.)

The common thread here is unknowability: we simply don’t know where, when or how these phenomena will play out. And in my experience, the thing in this world that markets hate and fear the most is uncertainty. We have no control over the uncertainty; we can and should have perfect control over how we respond to it.

Or, ideally, how we don’t respond. Because the last thing in the world that long-term, goal-focused investors like us do when the whole world is selling is – you guessed it again – sell. Indeed, I welcome your inquiries around the issue of putting cash to work along in here.

The best we can do in times like these is to always remain optimistic, there truly is no other reality. In addition, continue to steadfastly invest money within your respective retirement plans if you are currently in that mode, as you are buying the greatest companies at very discounted prices. Continue to be vigilant about debt: pay it off. For some- it may be a good time to consider refinancing.

I am here for you if you have any questions at all. Remember keep calm and carry on. As the great sage of Omaha; Warren Buffett has said: “Fear is the foe of the faddist, but the friend of the fundamentalist.”

Be of good cheer. This too shall pass.

Theresa Rosen