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Moss Talks to CNN About Stock Market Highs and Lows

These are transcripts from Wes Moss’s interview with CNN on November 30, 2013

View the full transcripts on CNN

I’m joined by Wes Moss, a certified financial planner and host of “Money Matters” on WSB radio here in Atlanta.

So, Wall Street had a great month, the markets are getting a great year. It’s going gangbusters. Should we be worried?

WES MOSS, CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER: This is always the time to be more worried. So, it’s much easier to be buying into a market when we’re down 10 percent, 20 percent. It’s a lot tougher to be buying into a market where we’re at an all-time high. And typically, markets correct, on average, once a year, 10 percent, or we get 20 percent corrections every 2, 2 1/2 years. We are long past due any significant corrections.

MARQUEZ: I don’t like that sort of talk. So, you think that we could have a correction coming, but that could be sort of devastating to people who are in the market, yes?

MOSS: Well, and that goes back to if you are an investor right now, you’ve got to not get lulled to sleep by how good the stock market has been, and we’re up 27 percent on the S&P 500, up 24 percent on the Dow, and we haven’t even had a 5 percent correction since June of this year. So, I think that investors can tend to forget that the markets correct and they don’t go straight up and they can’t go straight up forever. So, I just want to make sure investors don’t get lulled to sleep by how good this market has been.

MARQUEZ: But there’s a lot of confusing data out there. The markets are way up, housing is up, there are new job numbers, or jobs are climbing, not per happen as much as they’d like, but yet, Americans feel pessimistic about the future of the economy. What is going on there?

MOSS: I think that’s part of the reason is that the economic data’s still mixed. There’s nothing that’s gangbusters in this economy. Housing is good but not great, jobs are good but not great. Consumer confidence, depending on which poll you read, is OK. But we’re still a long way from the euphoric days of 2006 and early ’07. And consumer confidence just isn’t back to where it was.

MARQUEZ: So, if there is a correction in the markets, what investors might be most vulnerable or concerned about that?

MOSS: I think where people get caught the most is they end up, in a year like this, in a stock market run that we’ve had for almost five years now, to the tune of 150 percent-plus, a lot of investors tend to get over weighted in stocks, and it makes sense because that’s what’s been growing the fastest. So, I want to make sure investors don’t ignore some of the safer areas of the market in their 401(k)s.

MARQUEZ: So, those closer to retirement age, for instance, those — I mean, who is really going to be paying more attention here?

MOSS: Right, who’s vulnerable? If you are 60 to 65 and you are within a year or two or three of retirement, this is not the time to be 100 percent or 80 percent or 100 percent in stocks inside of your 401(k).

MARQUEZ: All right. And for regular investors, how can you mitigate the risks? Are there places you can park your money so that you can hopefully wait for a better day? MOSS: So, we all have to remember that if you’re in your 30s and 40s and even 50s, we have decades to go as investors. So, technically, you should be an investor for almost half a century. So, what really works as an investor is being consistent, slow and steady is not exciting but still wins the race. So, as long as Americans can try and fight their way into saving 15 percent to 20 percent a year, and I know that sounds like a lot for many people, but if you can do that as an American and you can ride right through the market’s ups and downs, you’ll be in a good position to retire and maybe even retire early.

MARQUEZ: Wes Moss, I’m pretty sure I have 150 more years of investing to do, so you know, it’s all good.

MOSS: That’s a good time frame.

MARQUEZ: Thank you very much for being with us.

MOSS: Thank you for having me, Miguel.

MARQUEZ: Take care.

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