NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Investors apparently hate uncertainty. That's become an old Wall Street adage. I reckon it's probably true.
I live for that reality.
Pardon my coastal-snob bluntness, but, unless you need your money sometime soon (or you're filthy rich), you're a sucker if you go to "all cash" or get "stopped out" of your so-called long-term positions thanks to random flavors of uncertainty.
I equate the "uncertainty" investors experience in the stock market to the sub-4.0 magnitude earthquakes we experience throughout California daily.Unless the tremor centers itself within a few miles of where you are, you don't even feel it. And the small ones you do feel leave you unsettled for a short period of time, if at all. I never want to experience the "Big One," whether it be an earthquake or a massive, sustained stock market and general economic shock. I'm 37 years old. I've been investing for more than 20 years. And I have never experienced anything more than the stock market equivalent of the 5.5 Chino Hills earthquake that hit Southern California in 2008. Interestingly, I was out of town for the Chino Hills quake, napping in a Manhattan hotel room, when it hit. I opened my eyes the second it struck and became breaking news on CNN, displayed on the screen in front of me. I called my wife. She was good. So was my daughter. Luckily, there was no significant damage, death or injuries as a result of the quake. But it wasn't anything to sneeze at either. The two most recent and memorable stock market swoons -- the 2000 dot-com bust and the 2008 economic crisis -- were on par with that 5.5 quake I missed. It was something to call home about, but it did not end up being that big of a deal. Investors, thanks in large part to incessant and hysterical media coverage, blew both the 2000 dot-com bust and the 2008 economic crisis out of proportion. To this day, they still do. You can't buy a stock with a P/E ratio over 20 without somebody telling you that you never learned your lesson.
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