Volatility remains the biggest issue for investors as we watched
the indices flip-flop (ala the market pundits who cover them) from
negative to positive and vice-versa throughout the day.
We continue to actively prune our
Best Dividend Stocks List
to avoid any kind of underperformance. We downgraded a third
big-name stock from our list today, so be sure to check out
our post detailing the downgrade
if you haven't already.
Leading the early charge higher today were shares of Kroger (
), following the supermarket chain's better-than-expected earnings
report. Credit card plays American Express (
) and Capital One Financial (
) saw gains as well. Capital One is said to be closing in on the
acquisition of ING's online banking division, well-known here in
the states as Orange Direct. Gold-mining companies were laggards,
with Goldcorp (
) and Agnico-Eagle Mines (
) shares leading the way lower. Home improvement chains Lowe's (
) and Home Depot (
) bounced back following an analyst stepping up to defend certain
retailers after the recent sell-off. Wall Street investment bankers
couldn't be too happy with the drop in shares of yesterday's IPO
) as shares broke below the opening print price of $16 during
today's trading. Also, shares of hot IPO LinkedIn (
) traded down over 8% as well. Investors need to be careful chasing
hot stories as we have had with these IPO names recently.
One quick note as I hear Congressman Anthony Weiner will resign
later today following the recent firestorm surrounding his Internet
escapades. How long you think until one of the major news channels
hires him as a political analyst/consultant? I wouldn't be
surprised to see him follow in the footsteps of fellow disgraced
New York politician Elliot Spitzer, who was eventually rewarded
with his own television show on CNN. That's politics for you!
) came out with a report yesterday that showed Americans who
provide care for their aging parents lose an estimated three
trillion dollars in wages, pension, and Social Security benefits
when they take time off to do so. The percentage of adult children
providing personal care and/or financial assistance to a parent has
more than tripled over the past 15 years and currently represents a
quarter of adult children, mainly Baby Boomers. This is likely a
topic that many of us never really thought about from a financial
standpoint. Nonetheless, if you have parents that are in their
older years, there are several topics you may want to discuss with
them when it comes to avoiding major financial mishaps. If you can
get your parents to divulge their financial matters, it makes sense
to know what their financial obligations are and how you may be
able to step in to help manage things in the event of unexpected
circumstances. It makes sense to have access to banking account
information, credit card information, as well as making a list of
what their monthly expenses are. You certainly want to stay after
any investment accounts as well. Having a will/trust set up is a
smart move, but while your parents are living, you need to be sure
their financial matters remain in order. It would be advisable to
make copies of any key documents your parents possess that will be
a factor in their estate. Be sure to set up an annual check-up when
it comes to taxes and updating the regular financial obligations.
Have all the account numbers and passwords in a safe place for when
you need it. These are all good tips to keep handy and share with
anyone that is facing a situation with aging parents now or soon
enough. And if you're an aging parent yourself, make sure you and
your kids are on the same page regarding your finances.
I bring this point up today especially with the market weakness
we have been seeing the last couple of months. In the short term,
your portfolio may not be firing on all cylinders. However, when
you look back years from now and see how compound interest from the
dividend names you accumulate begin to really take hold, you will
be glad you ignored the daily market noise. I can't say it enough:
it's critical that you continue to acquire assets that produce
income. You can not be a "deer in headlights" when turbulence
comes. Instead, you put your head down and get down to
Having it all in life is nearly impossible - the key is
narrowing down what is most important to you and your family and
making those goals your target. It could be owning a home or paying
for all your kids' college education, wanting to retire before the
age of 62, not running out of money in retirement, etc. If you live
within your means, you are one step closer to nailing those goals.
Try to keep up with the Joneses and you will likely fall short.
Remember, every investment you make in life carries with it some
sort of risk. You just need to continue to focus on the smartest
bets possible where the risk/reward has you coming out on top. Sit
in cash more than you should and you'll fight a losing battle vs.
taxes and inflation. Most of us want to live long lives, but those
later years won't be pleasant if you don't invest well.
There are lots of economic headwinds that we continue to
maneuver through, and we don't see this situation changing anytime
soon. Don't let fear paralyze you from executing your plans on
building wealth. Stay methodical, look for opportunities, and
remain on course by putting funds to work in quality
dividend-paying stocks. We always aim to have the
"recommended" stocks on our list
as names we would either initiate a position in or even add to
existing positions. More importantly, begin to use more and more of
your savings if you can afford to, and start putting it to work for
your retirement or other big event in your life. Investing isn't a
sprint, it's a marathon. Veer off course, and your road to success
will get longer.
On a final note, be sure to check out our weekly
"Top 50 Watchlist Names"
post that is out today, only for
Thanks for reading, and I'll see you tomorrow! P.S. Please pass
this e-mail on to someone you think can use some financial
motivation as well as being kept in the financial news loop that
could affect them. Thanks again!
Be sure to visit our complete recommended list of the
Best Dividend Stocks
, as well as a detailed explanation of
our ratings system here