Advertisement
Financial Planning

You Need a Financial Plan

It's the only way you can really figure out how to handle the market's ups and downs.

We have all heard the cliché, "Hope is not a plan." Market corrections of 10% or more are never fun, but they do a great job of reminding us of the truth in that common phrase. We all need to remember that market corrections are a natural occurrence that we have to accept if we want to have money invested in the stock market.

Advertisement - Article continues below

With "financial entertainment channels" all focused on ways to increase ratings, maximize viewership and boost advertising revenue, they are working hard to keep us whipped up into an emotional frenzy over what is really normal market activity. They want us to be emotionally pumped up. They want us glued to the screen to see what "big" news might come next. I think history has proven that while mixing pumped up emotions with investment decisions might be great for TV ratings, it is not a recipe for long-term financial success.

When market corrections do occur, they quickly divide all of us into two basic categories: those with a plan and those without. Both groups want answers to the following questions:

  1. How bad is this?
  2. What does this mean for me?
  3. What is the impact on my investments?
  4. Does this affect my financial well-being?
  5. What should I do?
Advertisement
Advertisement - Article continues below

While these are all important questions to consider, the most important question to ask yourself is this:

Advertisement - Article continues below

How can you possibly answer any of the five question listed above without a financial plan in place?

The advantage of having a financial plan in place is that you can pause and take a systematic look at what a correction really means for you. It provides a framework that allows you to assess current market conditions within the context of your goals and helps put everything into a more personal context. Doing this will likely offer some peace of mind and hopefully prevent any panicked emotional decisions. Having a plan does not immunize you from market corrections, but it can help you avoid emotional responses and give you a way to make informed decisions about how to react.

The next time we experience any kind of market correction, I encourage everyone to slow down, keep things in perspective and try to understand what current market activity, positive or negative, really means for you. Of course, having a plan will help.

About the Author

Ian Maxwell, Financial Adviser

Founder & CEO, Reviresco Wealth Advisory

Ian Maxwell is an independent fee-based fiduciary financial adviser and founder and CEO of Reviresco Wealth Advisory. He is passionate about improving quality of life for clients and developing innovative solutions that help people reconsider how to best achieve their financial goals. Maxwell is a graduate of Williams College, a former Officer in the USMC and holds his Series 6, Series 63, Series 65, and CA Life Insurance licenses.Investment Advisory Services offered through Retirement Wealth Advisors, (RWA) a Registered Investment Advisor. Reviresco Wealth Advisory and RWA are not affiliated. Investing involves risk including the potential loss of principal. No investment strategy can guarantee a profit or protect against loss in periods of declining values. Opinions expressed are subject to change without notice and are not intended as investment advice or to predict future performance. Past performance does not guarantee future results. Consult your financial professional before making any investment decision.

Advertisement

Most Popular

What Are the Income Tax Brackets for 2020 vs. 2019?
tax brackets

What Are the Income Tax Brackets for 2020 vs. 2019?

The IRS unveiled the 2020 tax brackets, and it's never too early to start planning to minimize your future tax bill.
June 20, 2020
HSAs Get Even Better
Financial Planning

HSAs Get Even Better

Workers have more options with flexible spending accounts, too.
July 2, 2020
17 States That Will Gain or Lose Electoral-College Votes After the 2020 Census
Politics

17 States That Will Gain or Lose Electoral-College Votes After the 2020 Census

Every 10 years, the 435 seats in the House of Representatives are reassigned based on the results of the U.S.
July 2, 2020

Recommended

Closing Bell 7/7/20: Nasdaq's 5-Day Win Streak Snapped
Markets

Closing Bell 7/7/20: Nasdaq's 5-Day Win Streak Snapped

A broad-market downturn Tuesday ended the Nasdaq's five-day win streak and sent economically sensitive industries to deep losses.
July 7, 2020
The Bull Run Is Over: It’s Time To Replace Luck with a Plan
investing

The Bull Run Is Over: It’s Time To Replace Luck with a Plan

It’s not hard for investors to look good during a bull market, but now comes the real test.
July 7, 2020
Closing Bell 7/6/20: U.S. Stocks Grab the Baton From China
Markets

Closing Bell 7/6/20: U.S. Stocks Grab the Baton From China

A surge in Chinese equities, as well as a massive improvement in services-sector data, lifted U.S. stocks and sent the Nasdaq to new highs Monday.
July 6, 2020
When Online Investing Turns Deadly: Lessons from a Robinhood Trader’s Suicide
investing

When Online Investing Turns Deadly: Lessons from a Robinhood Trader’s Suicide

Gamification of financial apps can make investing fun, but unsophisticated investors can get in over their heads if they aren’t careful.
July 6, 2020