The 3 Most Timeless Investment Principles (2 of 3)by Daniel Myers
Expect Volatility and Profit from It: Investing in stocks means dealing with volatility. Instead of running for the exits during times of market stress, the smart investor greets downturns as chances to find great investments. Graham illustrated this with the analogy of "Mr. Market," the imaginary business partner of each and every investor. Mr. Market offers investors a daily price quote at which he would either buy an investor out or sell his share of the business. Sometimes, he will be excited about the prospects for the business and quote a high price. At other times, he is depressed about the business's prospects and will quote a low price. Because the stock market has these same emotions, the lesson here is that you shouldn't let Mr. Market's views dictate your own emotions, or worse, lead you in your investment decisions. Instead, you should form your own estimates of the business's value based on a sound and rational examination of the facts. Furthermore, you should only buy when the price offered makes sense and sell when the price becomes too high. Put another way, the market will fluctuate - sometimes wildly - but rather than fearing volatility, use it to your advantage to get bargains in the market or to sell out when your holdings become way overvalued.