“He’s crying, stop doing that!”

This is an oft mentioned phrase in my house when one of my older children is pestering one of my younger ones – or the other way around too I guess.

It made me think of the stock market news today.  Read the ticker for just one hour of news from this morning:

9:24 AM ET – Cloture vote on financial reform goes to another vote today after being voted down yesterday. The uncertainty is weighing on Stocks. “

9:54 AM ET – Philly Fed Index slightly better than expected at 21.4 vs 21.3.

10:24 AM ET – Weak data, European woes and investors selling on a wider than expected correction notion help to push Stock markets lower.

That first one kills me.  Some reform bill that no one has read was voted down yesterday and the uncertainty of its passing today is apparently the cause of the lower stock prices (and my certain ruin!).

Sadly the daily motion sickness given us courtesy of the stock market is (very likely) caused by the emotional buying patterns of many nervous and disquieted investors who buy and sell based on this kind of data.  It’s wise to remember that this is just NEWS.

If you read and listen to the news wrongly, you might begin to think that the men and women we call Representatives and Senators in Washington (many of whom have never had a real job) are creating the returns in our investment portfolios.  There could not be a great misperception about the value of our investments.

In reality, the level of leadership in Washington is no more measured by daily or weekly stock market activity than my “good or bad” parenting is measured by whether or not my kids are smiling or crying at any given moment.   Thanks be to God for both of those factual statements.

I have no confidence in Washington to take care of me in my retirement years, nor do I need them to “boost” the returns in my investment portfolio.  In reality they have very little ability to do this for as much as they try.

Thankfully, capitalism and the motivation of profit driven companies are more powerful than any fly-by-night politician whose long range perspective might reach the end of his nose.

Worry not investor.  Your portfolio owns the goals and dreams of over 12000 entrepreneurs (if you invest with me, that is), and you’ll be just fine.

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