Market Update

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01 April, 2020

Peter Toner
Independent Financial Adviser

Financial Markets don't like bad news and the current Coronavirus outbreak is unfortunately no exception to that rule. You'll no doubt be aware of the impact this is having on the economy and Stock Markets. Downturns are not unusual but are very unsettling and upsetting.

In these situations, it can be natural to question whether you should take some action. But at times like this, often the best plan is to do nothing at all, particularly when you are investing for the longer term.

No-one can say for sure how long this downturn will last, or how bad it will get. But we can look at what has happened before. It's worth remembering that this is one of many "epidemics" that the world has experienced since the SARS outbreak in February 2003. Among others we also had Avian flu in 2006, the new strain of Swine Flu in 2009, the Ebola outbreaks of 2014 and 2018 and the Zika Virus in 2016. Global markets weathered all of these well, with markets recovering over the longer term.

The Stock Market has declined by 25% on more than 11 occasions since 1871 and recovered every time.

There are three steps that can help at times like these:

  1. Having a Plan - Investing without a plan can result in reacting to short term market movements. As my client, you have a plan built on a thorough understanding of your needs, attitude to investment risk and longer-term goals. Downturns come and go.
  2. Diversification - The investment philosophy that should underpin all investment is Diversification. By doing this, you are not putting all your eggs in one basket.
  3. Avoiding taking a short-term view - It is important to take a longer-term view when investing. An investment established during calmer times should not be abandoned when there is a market downturn.

A dash for cash in 2001 and 2008 would still have left investors out of pocket today.

The FCA stated "If you sell when the market is down, you will suffer a loss in the value of your investment and might miss out on any increases in the value in the future if markets recover."

It is important to stay calm, and to not panic into making short-term decisions.

Forbes Solicitors Financial services Department remains open for business following Social Distancing guidelines by working from Home. Stay Safe, Stay invested and contact us if you need Financial Advice.

For more information contact Peter Toner in our Financial Services department via email or phone on 01772 220383. Alternatively send any question through to Forbes Solicitors via our online Contact Form.

Learn more about our Financial Services department here

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