Financial Lessons to Learn from 2003
is a Financial Advisor with American Express Financial Advisors based in San
Francisco, California and can be reached at email@example.com
One of his specialties is
comprehensive financial planning for gay and lesbian individuals and couples.
Brandon Miller has a website that can
be found at http://gayfinancialadvisors.com/California.htm
How did last
year’s economy and significant financial events affect your investing
strategies and, ultimately, your “personal economy,” or your personal
financial situation? Following are
some lessons to be learned from the past year.
Take the Fear out of the Fall
In 2003, many
investors felt burned by the bear market and pulled out of their investments. If
you were one of these investors, chances are you missed a big opportunity to
rebound. Instead of trying to time
the market, consider some basic rules:
- Know your timeframe. If you are in the market for longer than five years, you
can afford to ride out a down cycle.
- Stay diversified. If your assets are spread out over different classes and
sectors, you will be better positioned to weather the storms.
- Rebalance regularly. At minimum, rebalance every year. You don’t want to be
overexposed in a class of securities.
Select funds with care. Find
solid performers with modest fees and toss the losers.
unemployment rates were a sobering reminder of how important it is to have an
emergency fund. The number of
long-term unemployed hit a 10 year high in the last quarter of 2003.
To be safe you should have a cash reserve equal to six months of expenses
in an account where it is easily accessible.
Don’t Overinvest in
Your Company Stock
we should have learned anything from the plethora of recent corporate scandals,
it was to take your 401(k) off “autopilot” and make sure you are not overly
invested in company stocks. Many financial advisors recommend limiting your holdings in
your company stock to 20% or less.
qualified financial advisor can help you create a comprehensive financial plan
for 2004 that addresses these topics as well as your specific risk tolerance,
goals and objectives.
This information is provided for informational purposes
only. The information is intended to be generic in nature and should not be
applied or relied upon in any particular situation without the advice of your
tax, legal and/or your financial advisor. The views expressed may not be
suitable for every situation.
Express Financial Advisors Inc. Member
NASD. American Express Company is
separate from American Express Financial Advisors Inc. and is not a
Brandon Miller has a
website that can be found at http://gayfinancialadvisors.com/California.htm