A Penny for a Fool's Thoughts


As the Dow slid over 500 points yesterday, we asked Fools to join a live chat. Share your thoughts. Ask a question. Provide an answer. Community is important on days like yesterday. It's what makes the Fool unique from other investing organizations.

You didn't disappoint: 20,000 Fools joined the chat, leaving well over 1,000 comments in a few short hours. In no particular order, here are some that caught my attention (in their unedited, original form).

"I am so new to this, it looks terrifying, but it's actually a little heartening to see things in my price range for once."

"The older generation are nervous, can't stomach the market and getting out. Now is the time for younger generation to ride the wave and hang in there."

"What happens when everyone comes home from work and finds out they just lost 5-10% of retirement in one day. Does tomorrow then become a bloodbath?"

"Anyone with any sizeable 401Ks have seen all of this before... how much of a gut check can you handle?"

"I have personally sold everything and will sit on the sidelines."

"Down 400+ today. Reminds me of March 2009. Give me a few more of these sessions, and it'll be hard to resist some serious buy opportunities."

"I am 63 and unemployed, I have an IRA with 700,000. Should I sell?"

"So are investors just now figuring out the economy is bad? What the heck were they thinking the previous part of the year while the market kept going up? Makes you wonder sometimes..."

"I am retired but still working. I'm almost at my pre-2008 retirement account levels and am really fearful of another tank. I have a diversified portfolio but it's not that big. Sell now? Hang on?"

"Rejoice Fools the market is on sale!"

"It is time to take a deep breath, relax and wait. I am 78 years old. Have been here a few times. Made some money a few times, lost some a few times, still have my head above water and enough to live out my days and leave a bit behind. Will look things over tomorrow and in the coming weeks and find some cash to invest."

"Not to discount the real problems our country faces, or to try to explain the market, but does anyone think the current 'fears and uncertainty' apparently moving the market right now are a little weak compared to the sudden meltdown from the banking sector in 2008? This just seems like kids stuff in comparison."

"Days like this underline the usefulness of a watch list. I saw a couple of tempting bargains on mine today."

"Having a 10% correction during a bull market is understandable. But a 10% correction when the market is just starting to recovery...?"

"Don't worry about timing the slide. Any time in the next/past few days will be a just fine time to buy."

"Sounds like the market is on sale. Personally, I will be buying more of almost everything I currently hold. I assume that is Foolish?"

"I'm 75% liquid as of this past monday. Can't ignore the abundance of soft economic data recently reported coupled with planned cuts in gov spending. I know its difficult to time the market. However, I feel that the lack of positive economic data suggests that things could be rough for the near future. Plan on jumping back in as sentiment imporves."

"Yesterday I pulled 90% of my money out of My 3 Mutual funds and put it in a money market account. I will wait until i see gold going down and the market making more sence before I put the money back into the mutual funds."

I think we are finally seeing some good values again in the industrials/cyclicals. [General Electric (NYS: GE) ] is now yielding 3.6%, with a quickly increasing dividend and improving fundamentals."

M Thompson:
"The market seems to me like the buyers are just sitting on the sidelines, which is no fun for all those that had to sell this week, just hoping that the media don't succeed in creating an extended panic sell-off."

"No one ever asks why the market goes UP for no apparent reason, so I think we have to remember it can go down for no real no reason as well. I will continue to add to my positions monthly based on how much I save and which way the market goes."

"Perspective is key in weathering the current storm. We have to remember to keep a long-term view and that the volitilty of the market is in itself very volitile (if that makes sense)."

"I think buying dividend stocks makes it much easier mentally to take big drops. If you reinvest, you are always a buyer of the stock, and therefore able to take advantage of lower prices. I bought [Bank of America (NYS: BAC) ] at 14 and feel stuck now with no dividend."

"I'm worried."


"I have been a trader/broker for over 35 years... have been around for the '87 crash, etc. The best lesson learned in humility. With the advent of computer trading, it has accelerated corrections from months/years into weeks/days sometimes hours! For the past 30 some years we have had rolling recessions/depressions in various parts of the economy. Should they all hit at once, it is a depression. It has rotated from various segments, housing, farmers, autos, etc. I'm hoping that this is not the big one, keep the faith."

"I don't think you can go wrong buying [Apple (NAS: AAPL) ] at these prices and you have to start somewhere. Just remember that you plan to grow your port over time and it will be a little rocky some days until you are more diversified."

"On days like this, turning off the TV and ignoring financial advice seems like the best move for long-term investors."

"Any chance the FED is going to stimulate the economy with some of their 'not so hard' earned money?"

Flip Perspective:
"Let's take a positive spin...this market is opening the door to get in on some good investments @ a very valuable price! It's not like many of these companies just all of a sudden started providing crap service today, or started manufacturing crap products today...this whole game just works off of sheep."

"Sit tight and hold on to your seat. Things will improve, just have to have the stomach to watch it happen."

"Hit the jackpot this year, great time to graduate college and start investing!"

"Wow, [General Motors (NYS: GM) ] reported blow-out earnings but still tanked 5% today."

"Frankly I couldn't see a better investment than US stock anywhere in the world right now."

"I believe me and Jack Daniels will be lamenting the days activity this evening."

"All indications for another recession. This time Feds wont be around for stimulus rescue and instead would be looking for steep spending cuts. With stalled job growth, looming US rating downgrade, foreclosure flood, problems in Europe, those who are patient would be presented with a unbelievable stock drop and historical low valuations of quality stocks for long term investing. This is my prediction of coming future."

"As a young investor with a long term outlook, with the majority of my investments in DRIPS, I look at days like today as opportunities."

"As long term investor, but current jobseeker I'm more worried about effects on employment prospects."

"Interesting that gold didn't really move too much today. I mean, no more than it did, say, on Monday. If it was a speculative bubble, I would expect it to collapse, risk-off style. If it was perceived as a safe haven, I would guess it to jump. But it just sat there. As if it was just a boring yellow metal, oblivious to the financial maelstrom whirling around it.. Sigh."

"I think people in their late 40's/early 50's are starting to realize they aren't ever going to be able to retire. You can't keep experiencing decades of losses / zero return investing and build a nest egg. Especially when your time horizon is getting pretty short. Best of all it comes when social security and medicare benefits may be slashed in coming years. Very easy to imagine decades of struggle for a disappearing middle class America."

"I got burned in November of 2008 trying to catch a falling knife, (GE in that case). other than the fact that the price has started to rise again what is the best way to determine a bottom. I have about 20% of my portfolio in cash at this point and am looking to get back in but am fearful of continual plunging prices."

"So, nobody's jumping off any roofs, I take it. I bought some good stocks, a few clunkers, but I am hanging in. The most pain ful is [Google (NAS: GOOG) ],but it is going to come back."

"Has the game rule changed? Corporates reporting best profits but the stock market still going down... what indicate the true economy better than company profits? Unemployment rate is high in the US but all those big corporations have been operating outside of US too. So what gives?"

"You can never get the right day to buy back in exactly-but you don't have to get it perfectly."

At the time thisarticle was published Fool contributorMorgan Houseldoesn't own shares in any of the companies mentioned in this article. Follow him on Twitter @TMFHousel. The Motley Fool owns shares of Google and Apple. The Fool owns shares of and has opened a short position on Bank of America.Motley Fool newsletter services have recommended buying shares of Google, Apple, and General Motors. Motley Fool newsletter services have recommended creating a bull call spread position in Apple. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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