Author Topic: New to Investing... Index fund/Bonds portfolio down $1.5k in 6 days :(  (Read 3586 times)

danclarkie

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Hi, so first of all I know not to panic.

I opened a brokerage acc and invested in index funds with an 80/20 split stocks/bonds.

I know not to time the market, but it seems I got in at a shitty time...

I set up an auto updating Google Spreadsheet to track the portfolio and it is down 2% since Thursday (inception) @ $1,441

Can someone please review my portfolio and give me the advice that this is normal and to:

  • Stop checking the account hourly
  • sit tight and wait for the markets to bounce back up


Here is a screenshot from my portfolio overview spreadsheet:


As I said above, I'm not panicking but dropping $1,500 in a week sucks.

Cheers!

Dan
« Last Edit: November 09, 2014, 11:30:35 PM by danclarkie »

cowstash

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I would say panic... but only if you need that money this week.

Otherwise, this is what markets do, and I bet that a lot of us here are seeing similar results (I know I am, and it's a lousy feeling). A declining market can be a good thing if you're just starting off investing, it means that as you continue to buy it's like you're getting these stocks on sale. If you feel sick checking your balance every day, then don't check your balance every day. If you find that you don't have the stomach for these kinds of downsides, then maybe look elsewhere as this isn't for everyone. But it seems like you know the long game here, you know to not get down in the weeds in your first week.

nereo

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I know not to time the market, but it seems I got in at a shitty time...
Saying you "got in at a shitty time" is easy to say in retrospect, but it's also indicates a 'timing the market' mentality.

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I set up an auto updating Google Spreadsheet to track the portfolio and it is down 2% since Thursday (inception) @ $1,441
I'd recommend not thinking about it in the $ amount.  Stocks loose 2% All. The. Time.  The market will drop 10% from a recent high about once a year.  It will fall 20% about once every presidential cycle.    It happens.  Don't Panic.

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Can someone please review my portfolio and give me the advice that this is normal and to:

    Stop checking the account hourly
    sit tight and wait for the markets to bounce back up
a) you are (presumably) invested for a point years into the future into companies that declare their earnings quarterly.  So hourly meanderings of a stock quote mean literally nothing.  It's just noise. 
b) stocks go down, stocks go up.  The broader market goes up about 80% of all years, and about 95% of all 5-year periods.  Remember you are invested in companies that produce things, and as long as they continue to be profitable you will do just fine.

Don't Panic, and always remember where your towel is.

T-Rex

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The market goes up and down, it is normal. I don't know any of your background, like how old you are, the details of your asset allocation or your target date for retirement. Maybe it would be productive for you to research alternatives as your next investment (assuming you don't have an adequate amount currently) so you can ride the waves in a way that you are comfortable with, and be less tempted to move your money in the future.

Roland of Gilead

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I have had investments go south on me in a short time.  The best thing to do is stop checking.

Heck, if I am not down a few % after I make a purchase, I feel I did something wrong.  :-)

catccc

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Don't worry, if you don't need the money on day 7, it's not a big deal.  And if you did need the money on day 7, you wouldn't have invested it.  Stop checking it!

the fixer

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Sure, if you waited a week to buy you would have increased this year's returns by 2%. But were you actually going to sell this year? If not, it doesn't matter.

Ten years from now, the difference this week will make in your average annual return will only be about 0.2%. You won't even notice. This is why it's pointless to be checking the market constantly.

kyleaaa

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Umm, losing $1500 on a $73000 portfolio is nothing. That's like 2%. Who cares?

Seriously, delete your spreadsheet. Now. There is no upside to tracking your investments like that and it will only stress you out, so why bother?

Zoot Allures

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I'm fairly new to investing also. The way I look at it is that the huge gains my portfolio made in 2013 gave me a nice cushion for these inevitable losses.

Frankies Girl

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Stop looking at it if you're going to fret over the drops... hell, crowing over the ups is just about as bad.

Go look at a historical chart that covers decades of investing, and see the upward trend? If you you magnify that line and start looking at all the jaggy little downward and upwards bounces over a year - that is what you are doing - focusing on the wrong part of the chart instead of pulling back and seeing that overall beautiful upward trend. THAT is why you can't scrutinize the day to day stuff. Cause it doesn't matter if you're talking long term investing. Big picture stuff here, and you need to internalize that part.


Like everyone else said, if you're not going to need the money for years and years, what happens day to day (or week, or month) is meaningless. Delete the spreadsheet and stop checking it often, unless you can see that a short term loss is meaningless since technically you should be in it for the long haul, and the only way you are going to lose money is if you panic and sell, thereby locking in the losses.


And for the record, I'm a new investor (new to at least understanding it anyway) over the last year, and I've lost over $20,000 in the last week and I am FINE. It just makes me a little sad I don't have some ready cash to throw in there right now.

FrugalSpendthrift

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Focus on the number of shares.  If that drops, then you should panic.

brewer12345

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I have a master spreadsheet that allows me to consolidate everything over 2 brokerages, a 401k, 4 banks/credit unions, etc. and see things in one spot.  Unless I am really near the point where I feel compelled to rebalance, I update my marks at most once a week.  You would be amazed how much less exciting it is to do that vs. every day.  Pick a day once a week/month/quarter and update your sheet then.  Ignore it and get on with life the rest of the time.