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Coronavirus Crisis...Should I Worry About My Portfolio?

Another day…another crisis du jour.  Lately the crises du jours seem to be SARS.  No, wait.  That was 2003 and 2004.  

Oh, bird flu.  No, no, no.  My mistake.  That was 2005 and 2006.

Swine flu?  Nope.  2009.

Ebola.  Hmm,  my bad.  That was 2014.

Coronavirus.  Yes, that’s it.  The Wuhan coronavirus.  

I’m not trying to make light of or diminish the seriousness of the virus.  I’m confident the world’s best virologists and epidemiologists are on it.  

It’s just that the mainstream media attributes any market pullback to uncertainty about the coronavirus.  

Do you think the combined value of the 500 largest, best financed, most profitable, well run businesses in America and the world won’t adjust to a viral outbreak in China?  Based on similar outbreaks this century, I’m betting they do.  But that’s just my opinion.

How about these facts.  The S&P 500 closed at 855 on January 31st, 2003, the genesis of SARS.  Seventeen years and six epidemics later, on Friday, February 7th, the S&P 500 closed nearly four times higher at 3,327.

The point is, there’s always something to drive the news cycle.  Something the media wants you to think will end the world as we know it.  Something to spin so we’ll keep spinning right on back to watching.

But we know better.  We’re investors, not traders or speculators.  And we don’t fall for the crisis of the day.  We don’t make long-term financial and investments decisions based on short-term events.  

Stay healthy, my friends.