Magazine article USA TODAY

Coping with a Volatile Stock Market

Magazine article USA TODAY

Coping with a Volatile Stock Market

Article excerpt

If you are a battered investor, what should you do in a volatile stock market that has left many investment and retirement portfolios in ruins? Nothing, say two finance professors at Purdue University, West Lafayette, Ind., if you plan to keep your money "working" in the market for 10 to 20 years.

"You especially shouldn't try to time the market? maintains Michael J. Cooper, assistant professor of management. "You do, however, need to hold stocks that will do well in recessions." He indicates that what tend to do well in recessions are value stocks--precisely those depressed-price, stodgy Old Economy industrial, materials, and consumer-product companies investors jettisoned during the technology run-up of the past several years.

The idea is not to add value stocks when the market turns down. You need to have these stocks in your portfolio all the time, explains Raghu Rau, assistant professor of management. "In any year, there are 10 to 15 days that account for almost all of a stock's returns. …

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