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Personal Thoughts 25 January 2014

As something of a timely reminder that markets do not keep rising, the Dow Jones duly slumped by 318 points yesterday.

This finished off, what was the worst weekly performance for the Index since the mid point of 2012, so is worthy of some comment.


 The question investors will no doubt be asking, is this a short term sell off on the back of data relating to China’s manufacturing sector’s contraction and a subsequent report on that, or something more extensive.


Certainly, many have highlighted the fact that we have some way to go in terms of recovery and the journey was never going to be an easy one.

Any hint of poor data is likely to knock confidence, while positive news can equally fuel a more recent exuberant tone.

There is however, the undeniable fact, that a number of stocks have become frothy and perhaps got ahead of themselves, with any hint of a slip in earnings or profits no doubt resulting in a sell off.

As I have commented before, from a personal perspective, I find it healthy to see pull backs along the way, although the danger is, of ever larger swings fuelling a herd mentality of panic selling.


Not that I am suggesting that is the case, as I feel for what it is worth, the market will continue to move forward, although perhaps we must all be on our guard in terms of selection, as there will no doubt be swings along the way.

 Growth projections are one thing, delivery is as many of us know another and paying a premium for jam tomorrow, can often result in a feeling of being short changed and subsequently out of pocket.


In terms of my own holdings, I remain reasonably comfortable with what I have and if I have learnt one thing over the years, it is, if the story hasn’t changed, then why panic and offload shares in a sound company.

Mind you, by the same token, I am not averse to some profit taking along the way, which makes obvious sense and always leaves something for the next investor.  

Each of course, has his or her own strategy, whether it be charting, following a purely fundamental approach, or a combination of both, aligned to other methods.

Whichever appeals or works for you, good luck with your analysis, selective  approach and ultimately any investments you make.     


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