Why trying to time the markets tends to be a losing proposition
The average investor's return is significantly lower than market indices due primarily to market timing.
— Daniel Kahneman
Timing the market means buying or selling based on trying to predict economic trends. While it may seem like an easy enough concept, using this technique isn’t a winning investment strategy. In fact, if you sell at the bottom and sit on the sidelines in times of trouble, the anxiety of being in volatile markets is replaced with the anxiety of being out of the markets. Have they bottomed? Is this just a bear market rally? A dead cat bounce? Is this the recovery? It’s impossible to tell. But there’s a strategy that removes the anxiety of picking the perfect time to invest: dollar-cost averaging.