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Learn The Five Habits of Highly Effective Investors

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What Goes Down Must Come Up

Do you remember where the Dow Jones Industrials Average (DJIA) closed on March 2, 2009, when the Great Recession held the world in its grip?

Does the number 6763.29 ring a bell?


These days, the DJIA is regularly closing over 13,000. For the past several weeks it has closed around 13,200. In other words, the stock market has doubled in value in the past three years.

So, with the value of hindsight, would it have made sense to pull your retirement savings out of the stock market as it tumbled downward? Obviously not.  As we wrote last September, the losses you experience in a downturn can never be recovered if you take your money out of the market.

Most investment professionals will tell you that a low point in the market is actually a buying opportunity. Still, the stock market should never be the only place you invest your retirement savings. Multiple long term studies show that over 90% of investment success can be attributed to asset allocation

Where you should allocate your assets depends on a lot of factors, including your tolerance for risk and how far away you are from retirement. And these factors change throughout your career, too. When it comes to your asset allocation, there is no point at which you should “set it and forget it.”

As we hope you know by now, through Lehigh’s TIAA-CREF retirement savings plan as well as its Voluntary 403(b) Retirement Savings Plan vendors, you have a wealth of investment options. But sifting through the options can be an intimidating prospect. That’s why Human Resources offers a variety of financial planning workshops throughout the year for faculty and staff at Lehigh.

Learn The Five Habits of Highly Successful Investors

Mark your calendars for TIAA-CREF’s next retirement investment seminar on campus, Thursday, October 18 at 4:00 p.m. Register today via the HR Training Registration tool.

Entitled The Five Habits Of Highly Successful Investors, this seminar covers some of the most important and often confusing aspects of investing for the average individual:

  • Setting financial goals
  • Realizing tax advantages
  • Reducing risk with diversification
  • Allocating assets
  • Understanding expenses

After the seminar, you might want to use your newfound knowledge to re-balance your investments. A TIAA-CREF counselor is on Lehigh’s campus monthly and is available for appointments.

Whether or not you can attend the seminar, you can schedule a meeting with a counselor by calling 1-800-732-8353.

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Spotlight is published monthly by Human Resources. Please address any comments to Hillary Kwiatek, Spotlight Editor, Human Resources, 428 Brodhead Avenue, send email to hik210@lehigh.edu, or call extension 85165.

Current and past issues of Spotlight can be viewed and searched at: Past Issues.