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The Importance of Staying Invested in Volatile Times

Don't flee the market in a panic, but rather embrace the turmoil as an investment opportunity--you'll be better off in the long run.

Editor’s note: Read the latest on how the coronavirus is rattling the markets and what investors can do to navigate it.

Daniel Needham: Market volatility is one of the most reliable things that you can predict. You don't know what prices are going to do next month, next year. The one thing we know is that prices are going to move around, and what we see is that prices often move around more than fundamentals, more than the underlying cash flows. And that means at times, you'll have these volatile periods where market prices will fall a lot, where stocks' share prices will fall, and maybe even residential property prices will fall. And often people get scared. People feel the pain of losses more than they enjoy the pleasure of gains. One of the most important things is that you don't overreact and sell stocks when they're down or sell shares when they're down. That's the worst thing that people can do. We think that what you want to be able to do is be prepared for the periods of market volatility by buying assets that you think are worth more than the price that you're paying for them.

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