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Saturday, February 23, 2008

The current state of the market

I used to love to look at my investment accounts online and see what had happened in the previous few days and see how much my investments had increased.

Now, not so much.

The one that bothers me the most, I think, is my Roth IRA. I opened it with a lump sum of $4000 in November. I really picked a bad time to open it, I think, as it has now dropped almost $375. However, there was no way for me to have known that. If I could go back and do it again, I would still do exactly what I did. I knew that it was important to have a Roth IRA, and at 26, I should have probably opened one earlier, but I wasn't educated enough in the world of personal finance to know that. Plus, I had the funds. So it made sense.

I cringe a bit when I see the estimates of retirement funds growing at an average rate of 8%. I suppose that could still happen with my Roth IRA this year. Who knows what's going to happen with the market. Sure, predictions aren't good, but I prefer to look at the world as glass half full. I'm not going to pull my funds out of my Roth, so I might as well hope that the value increases.

Now, the big question is whether I should be investing more in my Roth IRA right now or wait and do the lump sum thing again. I think I'll probably invest in smaller amounts rather than lump sum, but still wait until I have $1000 to invest and then do so, then build up another $1000 and invest. It seems like that might be the way to ride out the market's highs and lows. I might be buying low, I might be buying high, but at least the two will balance each other out. At least, I think that's how this whole investing thing is supposed to work out!

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