In bear market, don't panic if you buy, choose quality stocks


September 04, 1998|By Julius Westheimer

So, how should you proceed in this market?

Don't panic. And don't follow the crowd; the crowd is often wrong.

Look for buying opportunities, especially depressed high-tech issues.

If you seek income in this bear market, ask your broker about Duff & Phelps Utilities Income Fund. It trades on the New York bTC Stock Exchange, pays a high dividend and mails you a monthly check.

Stick to quality in a bear market. If Merck & Co. Inc. stock drops 20 points, you still own a top-grade pharmaceutical issue. If "XYZ" stock plummets, you could lose it all.

Never dump good stocks in a bear market. Since 1953, the average bear market has lasted only eight months.

On Tuesday, NYSE volume soared to 1.2 billion shares. In the Depression, 1 million shares was the "break-even" point for most brokerage houses.

Especially in a bear market, put every dime you can in tax-deferred retirement plans. You not only avoid income taxes on your contributions but your investments grow tax-deferred.

Young investors should start early. If from age 20 to age 65 you invest $50 a month at an annual 8 percent return, at age 65 you can take out $1,658 every month until age 100. They should buy growth stock mutual funds, not "income" or bond funds.

Pub Date: 9/04/98

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