Custom Search

Important Investing Tip for Seniors - Get Out at the Top

A relative of mine was a lover of Corvette cars made by General Motors. During his life, he owned many Corvettes. In his later years he gave up driving, which was good because he had become accident prone. Unfortunately he bought a ton of General Motors stock a few months before the company declared bankruptcy in 2009. He told me that he loved GM cars and thought the stock was at a good price. He didn't consider that it was okay to love the car but not the stock. His untimely GM stock purchases along with other ill conceived investments made just before the 2008 market decline left a his stock portfolio in shambles.

At that time he was in the early stages of Alzheimer's but no one, especially him, was aware of his condition. And no one, including his family, was monitoring his errant investing activities. He was "losing it", but he didn't realize it. Becoming goofy is bad enough, but not knowing that your goofy is much worse, particularly when disastrous investment decisions are a result.

Many seniors enjoy trading stocks as well as holding stocks for the long term. They know that it's difficult to make money with stocks even when their cognitive abilities are at their best. But as people reach their seventies and beyond, some will lose the ability to make sound financial decisions. With my friend's sad story in mind, you might consider handing off the management of your investments in case you become impaired. A family member with investing expertise or a trusted financial adviser might be worth considering.

While you might be reluctant to give up the day-to-day management of your portfolio, it would be reassuring to know that, if it's to be, you could become goofy knowing that your portfolio is in good hands.