This might sound crazy, but as I watch all of the stock market turmoil, I miss being an adviser on the frontlines working to calm my anxious clients.

I began my career as an adviser in 1987 when there had been an unprecedented drop in the stock market, leading to a crash. After receiving my securities license, I became a financial consultant with Fidelity Investments in Dearborn, Michigan, near Ford Motor Company headquarters.

Back then, many of our clients were factory workers and new investors who took on higher risks because they thought they couldn’t lose as the stock market reached new highs. Unfortunately, when the market crashed their lack of financial experience and sophistication caused them to sell their holdings at the lowest point of the market downturn. In contrast, our wealthiest clients would call during these downturns and buy as many blue chip stocks in companies with consistent long-term growth and profits as their cash reserves allowed.

Why did these groups behave differently? Most likely because the wealthy group had the benefit of prior experience or had access to a private wealth manager or family member who could provide them with insight and perspective. Meanwhile, the group made up of factory workers may have responded based on their fears and emotions, having never experienced a severe stock market decline

I finally understood what my poker-playing uncle meant when he said, “Scared money can’t make money.”

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