Bob Bestler

Things were looking good, and then there was that so-called correction

Edward Landi, foreground left, works with fellow traders on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange, Thursday, Feb. 15, 2018. Stocks are opening higher on Wall Street after several U.S. companies reported solid results.
Edward Landi, foreground left, works with fellow traders on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange, Thursday, Feb. 15, 2018. Stocks are opening higher on Wall Street after several U.S. companies reported solid results. AP

Things were looking pretty good.

I had about 35 cents invested with a financial adviser, an amount that, over the years, had slowly grown from about 30 cents.

It helped finance an occasional vacation in Mexico, a weekly round of golf, a couple nights out.

Then something really strange happened and for several hours it looked like the good times were over.

Mr. Trump got elected.

That's that, I thought. No more good times.

No more vacations in Mexico.

No more weekly golf.

A night out? Hey, Hon, wanna try that Subway down the street?

Yeah, may as well hunker down for the next four years and wait until happy days are here again.

But what! Wait a minute.

Mr. Trump got elected and the next day the market started going berserk — in a good way.

Turned out that the people, investors, they are called, who run the market loved this guy. He's the one who promised to kill all those pesky banking regulations that were designed to keep the economy humming.

For them, happy days had just arrived and they merrily drove the market up, carrying my 35 cents with it.

In just the first year of Mr. Trump's reign, my nest egg rose to 37 cents, then 39 cents, then 42 cents and then all the way to 45 cents and I said, “Wow! Double wow!”

Mr. Trump said he was responsible for the record-breaking market rise and said my 45 cents would probably climb to 50 cents pretty darn soon.

I couldn't wait. Mexico, here I come.

Then came Feb. 5. The Dow Jones Average plunged 1,175 points. Three days later, it dropped 1,000 points more and the week became the worst in about a thousand years or so.

It looked like 2007 all over again and I watched my 45 cents begin to drop.

The experts said not to worry. It's a “correction,” not a loss. A “correction,” they said, comes along about eye level every 10 years or so.

Don't panic. Don't jump out of that first-floor window. Don't sell your entire 35 cents. And by all means don't stuff that 35 cents under a pillow. You're not the tooth fairy.

So I'm hanging on. The market has settled down, a little. I'm still clinging to my 35 cents, but those glorious 45-cent highs are about gone.

I'm keeping an eye out, though. A couple more 1,000-point “corrections” and we'll be hitchhiking to Mexico.

Contact Bob Bestler at bestler6@tds.net

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