Ways to Track the Markets if You’re Busy
Active investors usually have to keep track of their portfolio’s performance most of the time. This can be difficult especially if you are also busy with other ventures and things. Of course, you need to spend some time with friends and family. The following are ways you can use to track the markets in spite of your busy schedule.
Interest Rates and Commodity Trends
Being aware of the trends in the marketplace can help you lower down on your consumption of “hot tips” or rumors throughout the day. Two key areas to focus on are interest rates and commodity or labor.
When interest rates are higher, there are usually lower stock prices. On the flipside, lower rates can mean that both companies and individuals will spend less on interest payments, the bottom lines will increase, and there will be higher earnings that will lead to higher equity prices.
Investors should also follow fuel cost and other commodity prices to measure how those fluctuations may affect their investments.
Rising labor costs can bury everyone especially retailers that employ workers at minimum wage. If you already know what’s in your portfolio ahead of time, you can better adjust your portfolio accordingly.
Weekly Market Trends
You don’t have to have yourself wired in to financial media all the time. But you should have to stay updated and watch finance-focused news at least once a week. The web as well as the social media is good places to read about strategies for investing and feel what the professionals are saying about the market’s future direction.
For you to avoid any excess, tiresome reading, just try to wrap your head around which industries are in or out of favor, along with the general status of the broader market. Catch up with a recap of the developments at the end of the week. The goal is to get the bigger picture of the trend. Afterwards, you can make changes in your portfolio accordingly.
Quarterly Financial Statements
This can apply mainly to investors who buy individual stocks. Investors should be able to review the Management Discussion & Analysis (MD&A) section of the company’s financial statements to get an idea of the management’s take on the opportunities and risks for the company. These statements will also give you an idea of the overall recent performance of the company.
Interview Funds or Firms One or Two Times A Year
This can be tricky and may require a lot of effort, so it’s usually best to select the time when you attempt these times of correspondence.
It’s better to pick a time of the year when it’s slower or the professionals in charge of the firms or funds are more likely to have time to talk to you. The moment you got them on the line, ask them for information about where the market or a certain industry is heading. They may be able to provide insights that you haven’t been able to think about or don’t have time to search.
Yearly Conference Calls
You can call an investors-relations representative at the company you are investing in and see if you can listen in on the company’s annual conference call. Check the company’s investors-relation section, which will usually be found on their web page, to know when the next call is going to happen.