Investing takes patience. And faith. Faith that opportunities will eventually come. From where? We don’t know. When? We don’t know that either. Many people, uncomfortable with eventually, develop and believe in narratives to address this discomfort. Stories provide a confidence that eventually does not.
Eventually is a tough psychological position to operate from. Smart people don’t want to leave it up to eventually. They want to know what’s going to happen next. They want a sure thing so they can bet big. Will the Fed raise or lower rates at the next meeting? Which direction is inflation headed? Will it be a better-than-expected earnings season? Ultimately, what are the markets going to look like in 12-18 months? This is the focus for most investors.
Eventually feels like a waste of intellect. Sitting back, cutting losses, biding time, cutting more losses while waiting for a time to pounce doesn’t sound all that appealing. Flexing your brainpower trying to figure it all out, to be a master of the universe…that’s more like it.
But, the markets are not obliged to make sense or reward your hard work. They simply do what they do — oscillate between periods of volatility and calm. Between trends and consolidation. Sectors go hot while others go cold. A never-ending cycle that stirs up every emotion possible.
From 2015 to 2019, opportunity was scarce (outside of equities). Bonds and currencies stagnated. And most commodities felt like they’d be stuck in a sideways trend forever. A frustrating time, but one that was eventually going to end.
Astute investors knew this. Anyone who studies markets, history and life in general knew this; trend-followers especially. They knew big moves were brewing and would eventually knock at the door.
And wouldn’t ya know it? The last few years have produced very large trends across many asset-classes. Equities, bonds, currencies and commodities have all provided large trends to profit from.
Have faith in eventually. And just remember, even after you figure it all out, to go with the trend because that’s the only thing that pays the bills anyway.