As I listen to CNBC in the background and read the financial press it is the season for the pundits to make their 2015 stock market predictions. Some of these predictions relate to the level of the market in general, others include “hot stocks for 2015.”
Many of these people are pretty smart and I’m not dismissing their research. What I am saying is that that I’m not so sure any of this is useful. But in the spirit of the season here are my 2015 stock market predictions.
The stock market might go up
The consensus seems to be that 2015 will be a good year for the stock market. They might well be right. The U.S. economy is improving, oil prices are low, etc.
The stock market might go down
The experts could be wrong or worse there could be some sort of adverse event that spooks the market and perhaps the economy.
My official stock market predication is that I have no clue
While this is all fun and provides something for the cable news talking heads to discuss, at the end of the day nobody has a clue what 2015 or any year holds for the stock market or the economy.
Focus on what you can control
We have no control over what the financial markets will do or over how your stocks, mutual funds, ETFs, or any other holdings will do. But as investors you can control a number of things including:
- The cost of investment advice
- The expense ratios of mutual funds and ETFs owned
- Your asset allocation
- Your overall investment strategy
- How much you save and invest in our 401(k) and elsewhere
- How much you spend.
I’m not denigrating the value of stock market research and analysis. But for most of you reading this post I’m guessing that you are long-term investors versus being traders. If that is the case you are, in my opinion, far better off controlling what you can control and investing in line with your financial plan than in trying to chase predictions and hot segments in 2015 or in any year.
Start 2015 out right, check out an online service like Personal Capital to manage all of your accounts all in one place or purchase the latest version of Quicken. Check out our Resources page for more tools and services.