Investment risks — Part 4: Ups and downs in investments, emotions and fees. In the last of a four-part series, Mary talks about the risks described in the newly updated “Upside, Downside — a guide to risk for savers and investors”. (Download it here). In this session: Being overconfident about your ability to trade investments or time markets; Taking on more volatility than you can cope with; Letting your emotions rule your investment decisions; Taking on more work or worry than expected; Counting on dividend income; Paying too much in fees and other expenses; Being tax-driven.
How emotional thinking can get in the way of good investing. Understanding common reactions can help you guard against bad decisions. Reactions include: Responding to how things are presented; Sticking with the status quo; Responding to how things are named; Following the crowd; Emotional attachment; Being overwhelmed with information; Fear of regret; Not considering the whole portfolio.
Spending too little, spending too much: Shopping is a favourite pastime; People who are too mean on themselves; People who spend too much — why do they do it? — 1. Keeping up with the Joneses, 2. Psychological, 3. Credit card company behaviour; Help for big spenders; Most important of all — Change your habits. PS: Final reminder about KiwiSaver tax credit.
Q&As: Alternative for daughter trying to escape bad debt — pay up; Is emphasis on total shareholder return justified?; Inflation calculator shows what prices have risen, and what haven’t; Is this reader ready to retire?; Struggling retiree questions wealthier reader’s concerns.
Setting financial priorities — Best thing to do with excess cash: the rule about repaying debt versus investing; Applying this to: credit card and other high-interest debt, mortgages, student loans; Top priority for all: repay credit card debt. Next priorities: If you don’t own a home; If you have a home with a mortgage; If you have a mortgage-free home.