The uncertain condition of today’s economy is not encouraging investors. This lowered investment trend can be traced back to the past 5 years where investments have been slow with subscriptions to how to manage your investment holdings magazines taking a dip. Many investors are uneasy over investing their money into a volatile market as stocks have been plummeting in value in recent years, with small rebounds here and there, now and then. This does not give investors enough confidence although there are many investing associations that offer courses or tips on how to manage your investment holdings.Good Monitoring of Investment
It is crucial to monitor your investments especially in this time of market uncertainty or volatility. Choosing the best investments is no guarantee of positive returns, much less huge returns, if you are not tracking the movements of your portfolio. As in any investment, there will be profits and losses; you can waste a lot of time and your hard earned money if you do not have good tracking habits or strategies such as proper record keeping. It is essential for any serious investor to review their portfolio’s performance when you are serious about how to manage your investment holdings for good returns.
There may be taxes that are incurred, retirement computations which may lead you to make further decisions on your portfolio or opportunities that come by your way to grow your wealth. There are now many online resources for your picking to assist you on how to manage your investment holdings by keeping careful records on every investment you make, be it stock, bond, mutual fund or security. Once the easy setup is done, you will only need to commit to a weekly or bi-weekly check up on the performance of your portfolio. This way, you will not be taken by surprise on any adverse news as you monitor the organizational news of your portfolio.Online Investment Services
Online investment tracking services will update your portfolio automatically to reflect any price changes on a daily basis with a re-computation of your assets. They also assist in comparisons of your investments to your targets and the expected returns of your portfolio. These online investment services also alert the investor on potential purchases to add on to your portfolio. They may even have tips on how to manage your investment holdings that will benefit you.Self-directed investing
This is for those who want to manage their own portfolio; those of you who might be retirees and are keen on how to manage your investment holdings can consider monitoring your own investments with a sufficient bit of basic understanding of the various investment types available for your own consideration. You will need to be familiar with tax consequences as well as investment earnings and related costs with any investment you plan to undertake.You will need to be computer savvy if you are engaging technology in your own monitoring of your portfolio as well as be comfortable with the investment terms and conditions.Self-directed investment requires online accounts monitoring, evaluation and understanding before an investment transaction can be performed. There may be a substantial online research required to confirm or refute financial assumptions.
There is still a need to engage an investment company or professional broker to perform some of your trades or investments. An online broker may charge certain fees for his services. You should check out the reputation and performance of online brokers first before engaging their services.When you get going on how to manage your investment holdings, you may need to consider it as a long term goal so that you are able to pace your time and effort on the portfolio that you are going to set up. A good investment plan is usually for the long term to enjoy its good returns. Discipline and patience are two virtues that are required when you want to manage your own investments as most stocks do not bring in huge returns in the short run. It’s a great commitment to those stocks which you think will fare well in the long run.
What makes rich people rich? Looking at the spending pattern of various income groups in the U.S. makes it clear: Savings. The real difference between the rich and the poor is that the rich spend a larger share of their income on savings (pensions and insurance) and education.Source: WSJ, Labour Department,When building wealth, preserving wealth, and passing it to the next generation is the formula for financial success it is surprising that less than 20% of Americans do have a written plan when it comes to investing and even retirement .The paradox in human behavior is that we are perfectly rational and capable of planning for a major event in our lives, but this is usually forgotten when it comes to investing. In fact, you will find that only a third of investors have a written plan guiding their investment strategy and retirement plans.Why is a plan needed?
The investment world is a harsh jungle, a world of murky waters where the smartest and the most organized survive and become successful while the rest are gobbled up. A written plan short circuits our normal response to something as emotional as money. It prevents us from resorting to our gut feelings and emotions. Instead of following the herd mentality that may prompt you to make unwise investment decisions, a plan will force you to stick to a rational strategy that is underpinned by fundamental investment principles. Some of the difficult emotions that you will have to overcome while investing include:
1) The fear of failure
2) The tendency to continue with a certain approach just because you started it
3) Personal matters such as relationship issues at home
It is also important to point out the main reasons why investors fall prey to the market and lose their precious funds:
1) Omitted facts and figures mislead investors into investing in a structurally unsound company or financial instrument
2) Overconfidence makes some investors think that they are invincible and that they can always beat the market.
3) Everyone wants to be seen as a champion, the successful general capable of leading an army to victory. This can make you make investment decisions that are not based on rational thinking but rather the desire to impress your friends, co-workers or family membersBy having an investment plan written down and actually following what it says, you will have dramatically increased your chances of winning and increasing the size of your nest egg or investment portfolio. The following are simple steps in creating a plan and avoiding the herd mentality and instinctual impulses that turn us into fools when investing:1. Set up specific and realistic goals
For example, instead of saying you want to have enough money to retire comfortably, think about how much money you’ll need. Your specific goal may be to save $500,000 by the time you’re 65.2. Calculate how much you need to save each month
If you need to save $500,000 by the time you’re 65, how much will you need to save each month? Decide if that’s a realistic amount for you to set aside each month. If not, you may need to adjust your goals.3. Choose your investment strategy
If you’re saving for long-term goals, you might choose more aggressive, higher-risk investments. If your goals are short term, you might choose lower-risk, conservative investments. Or you might want to take a more balanced approach.
4. Develop an investment policy statement
Create an investment policy statement to guide your investment decisions. If you have an adviser, your investment policy statement will outline the rules you want your adviser to follow for your portfolio. Your investment policy statement should:Specify your investment goals and objectives,Describe the strategies that will help you meet your objectives,Describe your return expectations and time horizon,Include detailed information about how much risk you’re willing to take,Include guidelines on the types of investments that make up your portfolio, and how accessible your money needs to be, andSpecify how your portfolio will be monitored, and when or why it should be rebalanced.A smart investor with a written down plan and strategy has already won half the battle without making a single financial decision. By implementing the plan and adhering to laid down rules of operation, the smart investor will avoid the pitfalls caused by human emotion and behavior and end up winning big.