Beware the Last Hour of the Trading Day

Buy or sell before before 3 p.m., when the markets get wild.

Life would be calmer if some higher power would herd all the portfolio managers and hedge fund jockeys into a holding tank with no access to computers or trading desks for the final hour of Wall Street action.

Knee-jerk selling blitzes, exacerbated by a herd instinct, mean too many good stock market days go bad -- and bad days worse -- after 3 p.m. Occasional "buying panics" also seem to happen close to the closing bell.

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Jeffrey R. Kosnett
Senior Editor, Kiplinger's Personal Finance
Kosnett is the editor of Kiplinger's Investing for Income and writes the "Cash in Hand" column for Kiplinger's Personal Finance. He is an income-investing expert who covers bonds, real estate investment trusts, oil and gas income deals, dividend stocks and anything else that pays interest and dividends. He joined Kiplinger in 1981 after six years in newspapers, including the Baltimore Sun. He is a 1976 journalism graduate from the Medill School at Northwestern University and completed an executive program at the Carnegie-Mellon University business school in 1978.