Categories
Investments

Investments Go Down (As Well As Up)

Investments Go Down (As Well As Up)

“It has been quite a rollercoaster ride, but one that I’ve enjoyed” ― Bez

3 min read

Investments Go Down As Well As Up

Investments Go Down (As Well As Up)

“It has been quite a rollercoaster ride, but one that I’ve enjoyed” ― Bez

3 min read

Investing is marked by highs and lows, peaks of prosperity and valleys of decline. At the heart of this rollercoaster ride lies a simple truth: investments can go down just as swiftly as they can rise. It’s a fundamental reality that every investor, from the novice to the seasoned, must come to terms with when navigating their investments.

The Market's Downturns: A Normal Occurrence

Market downturns are inherent to the investment landscape. They are regular events that halt the upward trajectory of the financial markets. These downturns shouldn’t surprise you; rather, they are to be expected in the cyclical nature of markets.

These periods of decline can stem from various factors, including economic shifts, geopolitical events, or sector-specific challenges. However, it’s crucial to grasp that market fluctuations, both upward and downward, are a fundamental aspect of the investment ecosystem.

Typically Your Investments Do Recover

Investing isn’t just about numbers on a screen; it’s deeply intertwined with human psychology. During periods of market turbulence, fear can grip you, clouding rational decision-making. The instinct to sell and salvage what’s left can be compelling, driven by the fear of further losses. However, reacting impulsively to market volatility often leads to selling at a low point, crystallising losses, and missing potential recoveries.

History has repeatedly shown that panic-driven selling in the face of market downturns tends to be counterproductive. Emotional reactions to short-term fluctuations can derail long-term financial strategies. It’s crucial to recognise that markets, although prone to short-term volatility, have historically recovered from downturns. Selling in a panic only crystallises losses, locking in the decline without affording the opportunity to recover when markets bounce back – a pattern that can substantially impact long-term wealth-building goals.

Staying the Course in Volatile Markets

Navigating market fluctuations requires a steady hand and a long-term perspective. History has consistently shown that despite periodic downturns, the market tends to rebound, demonstrating resilience over time. Investors who remain patient and stay invested through the storms tend to reap the benefits of eventual market recoveries.

Studies have shown that attempting to time the market by selling during downturns and re-entering when conditions seem favourable often results in missed opportunities for recovery. It’s essential to recognise that attempting to predict short-term market movements is a challenging and unreliable strategy.

Instead of succumbing to fear-induced reactions, maintaining a steadfast commitment to your investment strategy is crucial. Stay focused on your long-term financial goals and the strategic plan established with your Patterson Mills Financial Adviser. Review your portfolio periodically to ensure alignment with your objectives, risk tolerance, and time horizon.

En Route to Success

At Patterson Mills, we prioritise ensuring our clients are aware of market cycles, the risk they are taking and the importance of staying the course during turbulent times. We provide personalised guidance to help you understand the implications of market volatility on your investments and devise strategies to navigate through these periods. Our goal is to give you the knowledge and confidence needed to make informed decisions, ensuring that you remain steadfast in your investment portfolio, even amidst market uncertainties.

So, get in touch with us today and book your initial, no-cost and no-obligation meeting, you will be pleased that you did. Send us an e-mail to info@pattersonmills.ch or call us direct at +41 21 801 36 84 and we shall be pleased to assist you.

Please note that all information within this article has been prepared for informational purposes only. This article does not constitute financial, legal or tax advice. Always ensure you speak to a regulated Financial Adviser before making any financial decisions.

Categories
Financial Planning

Why Your Risk Tolerance Matters

Why Your Risk Tolerance Matters

“I think there’s a difference between a gamble and a calculated risk” ― Edmund H. North

3 min read

Risk Tolerance

Why Your Risk Tolerance Matters

“I think there’s a difference between a gamble and a calculated risk” ― Edmund H. North

3 min read

Your risk tolerance is paramount in navigating the complexities of investment decisions. It encompasses your willingness to withstand financial uncertainty or potential losses whilst pursuing investment returns. Understanding why your risk tolerance matters is vital to ensuring your investment strategy is suitable for your own circumstances and objectives.

Psychological Aspects: Gains and Losses

Firstly, the psychological dynamics of gains and losses are pivotal in comprehending risk tolerance. Behavioural finance emphasises that individuals experience the emotional impact of losses significantly more than the satisfaction derived from equivalent gains.

This disproportionate reaction shapes investment behaviour, prompting a tendency towards risk aversion. For example, you may opt for more conservative strategies, favouring the preservation of capital over the pursuit of higher returns, even when opportunities for substantial gains exist.

Moreover, this aversion to losses creates a psychological barrier that goes against rational decision-making in investments. Investors’ responses are often influenced by the emotional weight of possible losses, leading to a preference for safe or familiar investment avenues. Consequently, this bias can limit their ability to capitalise on opportunities that might present higher returns, resulting in a less diversified portfolio.

Recognising this inherent psychological inclination is essential in developing a balanced investment approach that aligns with your risk tolerance, ensuring you benefit from a more informed and strategic investment strategy.

Types of Risk

Investment decisions are influenced by various types of risk. Market risk, also known as systematic risk, is the inherent volatility of financial markets, influencing the value of investments. In essence, this type of risk is, in almost all cases, not possible to avoid. By acknowledging and comprehending market risk’s influence, you can employ strategies to hedge against its impacts and optimise your portfolios. For example, diversification across various asset classes and geographic regions can partially mitigate this risk, aiding in stabilising portfolio performance in times of market volatility.

On the other hand, there is also unsystematic (or ‘specific’) risk. This pertains to risks inherent to a particular asset or sector and thus is easier to avoid. For instance, company-specific risks might include management changes, product recalls, or takeovers. Sector-specific risks could stem from regulatory changes or shifts in consumer preferences affecting specific industries. Whilst diversification can help mitigate unsystematic risk to an extent, it cannot entirely eliminate it. Strategies such as asset allocation and thorough due diligence are vital in mitigating this risk.

Inflation risk arises from the erosion of purchasing power due to a rise in the general price level of goods and services. Investments failing to outpace inflation may result in diminished real returns. Strategies to mitigate inflation risk involve investing in assets with returns exceeding inflation rates, such as equities, real estate, or Treasury Inflation-Protected Securities (TIPS).

Political risk stems from changes in government policies, geopolitical tensions, or legislative decisions impacting investments. Diversification across regions and sectors, investing in stable economies, or utilising hedging instruments like options or futures can help mitigate political risk.

Concentration risk emerges from an overexposure to a particular asset class, sector, or individual investment. This commonly arises from an Employer’s reward scheme whereby an Employee is given shares as a bonus and thus over time the Employee builds up a large concentration of their assets in one Company’s shares. Diversification across various asset classes and industries can mitigate this risk. Additionally, implementing risk management techniques like setting investment limits or employing stop-loss orders can help control exposure to concentration risk.

Indeed, there are many other types of risk, click here to see our previous article explaining many of the most common types of risk you may encounter.

Your Risk Tolerance

Understanding your risk tolerance requires introspection beyond financial considerations. Factors such as life stage, personal circumstances, and individual temperament significantly influence risk tolerance.

For instance, if you are nearing retirement, you might prioritise capital preservation (lower risk) over aggressive growth (higher risk) due to a shorter time horizon and a lower capacity to recover from potential losses. Conversely, if you are beginning your career or are a younger investor, you might have a higher risk tolerance and seek higher returns whilst accepting increased volatility (risk) for long-term wealth accumulation.

Furthermore, risk tolerance isn’t static; it evolves over time. Changes in financial circumstances, market experiences, or personal life events can influence your risk appetite. Being young doesn’t necessarily mean you will have a higher risk tolerance, whilst being nearer retirement does not necessarily mean you will have a lower risk tolerance. 

It’s about regularly reassessing risk tolerance ensures that investment strategies remain aligned with evolving financial objectives and emotional comfort levels. Partnering with a Patterson Mills Financial Adviser will provide valuable insights and guidance in navigating the complexities of risk tolerance assessment, facilitating a more informed approach to investment decision-making.

Getting You Where You Want to Be

A comprehensive evaluation encompassing financial goals, personal circumstances, and emotional resilience can allow you to forge a balanced and well-suited investment strategy. Fortunately, this is exactly what Patterson Mills are here for; forming an investment strategy that suits your individual circumstances, objectives and risk tolerance. So, get in touch with us today and book your initial, no-cost and no-obligation meeting, you will be pleased that you did. Send us an e-mail to info@pattersonmills.ch or call us direct at +41 21 801 36 84 and we shall be pleased to assist you.

Please note that all information within this article has been prepared for informational purposes only. This article does not constitute financial, legal or tax advice. Always ensure you speak to a regulated Financial Adviser before making any financial decisions.