David John MarottaDavid John Marotta is the President of Marotta Wealth Management, a fee-only financial planning and asset management firm in Charlottesville, Virginia. He is an oft-quoted writer and speaker on financial matters and his weekly financial column can be found at www.eMarotta.com
Host: Are there things I can do to keep from losing money?
David Morotta: There are lots of different investments that will try to provide some guarantees on not losing money. So, for example, if there are accounts that will guarantee you a 2% rate of return plus a little bit more if the markets do well, and those kinds of investments ends up are safer, but only be damping down the returns you are going to get. So, if the stock markets do really well, maybe you get half and the company gets half, if the stock markets don t do very well, then maybe you only get 2% and so maybe on average you are going to get 4 to 6% on your money. But you can get 4 to 6% on your money by putting it in the bank. So, a lot of the schemes that are trying to reduce risk are also going to damping down your average returns. A better way of trying to reduce risk is put money in lots of places that by themselves are inherently risky, but they don t move in sync with one another. So, that s why investment advisors are always trying to look for non-correlated assets, where are two different things that don t move in sync with one another and that I can therefore make lots of bets that on average do well but not have my entire portfolio in one place.