Monday, October 1, 2007

Investing vs. Trading vs. Abstinence

The market is a chameleon. For those of us who hate fickle behavior, it's a tough pill to swallow. But this is the game. When value shoppers are left in the dust by momentum traders, what kind of market is it anyway?

That's what makes free markets intriguing. There are different ways to approach it. Some of us are full-on drinkers of the Kool-Aid™, eschewing any semblance of disciplined, technicall-sound entry points. Others are agnostic, skeptical of hype in either direction. Then, there are the atheists, doomsayers of any scent that comes up bullish.

I am getting over my personal duality. Shopping for bargains doesn't work in this market, not with the 50-basis point cut by the Fed, and certainly not with tons of fund money pouring into the market today. It made no sense otherwise. There was no trigger to today's broad gains. Pure, simple liquidity. I didn't go all in before the Fed cut, and I added more afterward. But it's not easy to dive in headfirst. I'm still a bit queasy from all the volatility of the past several months.

With that in mind, I'm still going to hunt for discounted prices. There's no plan of abstinence from buying great growth stocks. I know I'll end up buying some of my favorites even if they're not cheap, but I have to give the el cheapo hunt a try.

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