MONEY

The shortest Wall Street survival guide you’ll ever need

I recently did some some reporting on the debate over buy-and-hold investing vs. market timing. I’m mostly in the buy-and-hold camp. But here’s my biggest takeaway…

There are two basic sales pitches on Wall Street:

1. Stocks are always a good buy. So pay me 1.4% of your assets per year to put you in stocks.

2. Stocks are sometimes a good buy, sometimes not. Pay me 1.4% to tell you the time.

Which is right?

Neither. Stocks aren’t always a good buy, but timing is insanely difficult.

Your number one rule:

Don’t pay anything close to 1.4%. It’s likely to eat up much of your extra return even if the salesman turns out to be right.

Add More Money to your favorite RSS reader. Subscribe at http://rss.cnn.com/moneyfeatures.rss.

Your browser, Internet Explorer 8 or below, is out of date. It has known security flaws and may not display all features of this and other websites.

Learn how to update your browser
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 46,438 other followers