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For today’s shell-shocked individual investors, financial expert Charles B. Carlson offers hands-on advice on how to survive — and thrive — in a wildly fluctuating market. The economic recession of the past year, followed by the tragedy of September 11, sent a ripple of panic through investors in 2001. The market shed trillions of dollars in wealth, and hundreds of thousands of individual investors suffered substantial financial losses. The volatility we experienced last year was more than a fluke, argues investment expert Charles B. Carlson. With the ongoing changes in the economy, including changes in corporate reporting laws, instant availability of financial information, and the ability to buy and sell stocks with the touch of a keystroke, volatility is here to stay. But volatility isn’t necessarily a bad thing. In fact, Carlson argues, if you know how to weather today stormy markets, investing in them can be very profitable. In The Smart Investor’s Survival Guide, Carlson shows investors how to make volatility work to their advantage. First, he argues, it is critical that investors match their investment style — growth, value, buy and hold — to the kinds of stocks they pick. For long-term investors, Carlson recommends that a portion of their portfolio be invested in what he calls the calm eye of the storm, “easy hold” stocks that have consistent, steady growth, and very low volatility. Even in the terrible market downturn of 2000, when the Nasdaq lost 39 percent of its value and stocks like Lucent and Cisco saw their share price drop by 80 percent or more, a number of investment sectors actually gained in value. The Dow Jones index, minus its technology stocks, broke even. In other words, even in the worst markets, not every stock or sector goes down. Through what he calls the nine essential laws of successful investing in a volatile market, Carlson reveals: • How to diversify the portfolios across stock sectors and investment vehicles • The critical importance of matching one’s investment style — value, growth, buy and hold — to the kinds of stocks one invests in • The importance of “easy hold” — no-brainer stocks — in a portfolio, stocks that will grow 10 to12 percent a year with minimal volatility. Written by one of the most trusted names in the financial community, The Smart Investor’s Survival Guide shows investors how to master today’s turbulent markets, and profit from them.
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