Friday File: How about Hedging?

By Travis Johnson, Stock Gumshoe, April 3, 2020



What will probably serve investors best right now is patience. Don’t sell all at once, don’t buy all at once, and don’t feel like you have to do something every day. If you’re someone whose heartrate climbs as you open your brokerage account website and feel the urge to buy or sell every few minutes, maybe try to set yourself an embargo period, and only trade one day per week.

I imagine my performance would be better if I did that, but I am at least continuing to mostly focus on “micro-dosing” my buys, as I’ve been doing over the past couple months, to add gradually to existing positions and occasionally jump on appealing new stocks with small initial purchases when the price slaps me in the head a little bit.

I feel like a broken record in saying this again, but the uncertainty of the coronavirus rescue and what that will mean, or how it will shake out over the next few months, remains a huge unknown — the numbers are scary when we look at the viral spread and the overwhelmed hospitals in New York City, but completely staggering when we look at the economy, with more than two million people filing for unemployment last week and another six and a half million this week (this week’s, as you no doubt saw in those shocking headlines, is roughly 10X the size of the previous HIGHEST unemployment claim week in US history), and we’ve now got the big government rescue package that might help to stave off some of that unemployment just kicking in, with “loan” applications starting to come through today.

Even if it’s also true that banks aren’t quite ready to handle this massive influx of loan applications, and the government is having a terrible time being organized and streamlined about any of this, the scope of the rescue is amazing in the short term — for just the small business end, we’re talking about $350 billion going toward loans that will apparently become gifts as long as the money is used for payroll and operating expenses, which means that many small businesses should be able to save themselves for something like eight weeks (though for most businesses in the Northeast, we’re already at least three or four weeks in to this “lockdown,” so a lot of them have already gone ...

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