Investors can never predict the next event that will send the stock market reeling: a bad jobs report, a threat to the oil supply or an unexpected political scandal.
That is why investors need stocks that have been tested in all kinds of economic weather, ones that can guarantee profits, not just for a year or two but for a lifetime.
It would be hard to find a company with a longer track record than Procter & Gamble (PG) . The company has been paying dividends for more than a century, and its record of capital appreciation is also outstanding.
The company's many leading brands are familiar to anyone who has ever set foot in an American supermarket. They include Bounty paper towels, Crest toothpaste, Gillette razors, Head & Shoulders dandruff shampoo, Pampers diapers and Tide detergent.
P&G has been able to stay ahead of formidable rivals such as Kimberly-Clark.
These products are sold in more than 180 countries. The company has more than a dozen individual products that generate more than $1 billion in annual revenue each.
Because its products are such staples in American homes, the company's financial numbers fluctuate less than many other companies based on the ups and downs of the business cycle. P&G may never see explosive growth, but it is more insulated from risk than most companies its size.