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September 26, 2012

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Mark Kelch

I think you are on the right track. We investors are suffering from information overload and much of what we see on investor websites is irrelevant. I've been a stock broker for over 30 years and am frustrated by 2 issues that few financial columnists are interested in addressing. The first is the devastating effects that investor emotion has on their portfolio. The majority of my time over the past 10 years has been spent convincing my clients to do nothing; to stay with their original plans and ignore the everyday gyrations of the market. The mistakes I've seen some investors make have been horrifying and it's mostly due to an emotional rather than analytical response to the market.
Second, the financial press is having the same problems as the main stream media in their attitudes toward what they choose to report. What I mean by this is that they consider "access" to Wall Streets' major players as their top priority and avoid seeking information that would cause that access to diminish. Specifically, no one I'm aware of has questioned why Matt Taibbi, a reporter with Rolling Stone who had little or no experience with our financial markets has become one of the lead investigative reporters for the 2008 collapse. How is that possible?
I hope these thoughts are thought provoking.

Kent Thune

Mark:

I agree. I've observed that good behavior combined with average investments will produce greater returns than even the best investments combined with poor behavior.

The world receives its information from sources that are questionable at best. Even the "news" on the major networks show stories of people, places, and events that represent less than a fraction of 1% of what happens in the world.

If I can reach a few people and convince them to tune out as much noise as possible and tune into consciously selected information sources, I will have done my job in this regard.

Personally, I prefer reading timeless books to reading or watching mainstream media. If I am ever asked which are the best investing or personal finance books, I can honestly say "Walden" or "Tao Te Ching."

"We rarely meet a man who can tell us any news which he has not read in a newspaper, or been told by his neighbor; and, for the most part, the only difference between us and our fellow is that he has seen the newspaper, or been out to tea, and we have not. In proportion as our inward life fails, we go more constantly and desperately to the post-office. You may depend on it, that the poor fellow who walks away with the greatest number of letters, proud of his extensive correspondence, has not heard from himself this long while." ~ Henry David Thoreau, Walden

portagellc


You are one straightforward writer. I enjoyed reading your article and taking in all the interesting information. I share your thoughts on many points in this content. This is great.

Kent Thune

@portagellc: Thanks for the compliment and for reading. I will continue to do my best to be a "straightforward writer."

Cheers...

Kent

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