Your Most Important Investing Advantage - Time

by: Roger Nusbaum

So says Morgan Housel in a great article for The Motley Fool. Specifically he says:

If Wall Street is thinking about the next ten months, and you're thinking about the next ten years, case closed -- that's your advantage.

A big focus here for the last nine years (nine years, holy cow!) has been investing for the long term, realizing the market will have ups and downs and that no strategy or individual holding can be great 100% of the time.

Success with being patient in the manner above is about self-training to tune out the noise and not succumb to emotion. Northrup Grumman (NYSE:NOC) has been one of our best performers this year, going up about 40% year to date. We have owned the name for a very long time and I continue to believe it is a very good long term hold but just as this year has been a good one price-wise, there have other periods where the stock did not do as well. To Morgan's point in his article, I believe the underlying business is in great shape and so we want to continue to hold the name.

This is not to say there are not mistakes along the way; there have been and will be in the future but Morgan's point and I agree is that you as an individual have the advantage of time over most professionals. The success of your financial plan does not realistically rely on some random quarter or even some random year unless you make some sort of catastrophic mistake like too much in a lottery ticket biotech or complete capitulation at a generational low.