The calls all came in the evenings when the markets were closed.
The first one, on Feb. 23, 2009, came from a client who lived in the Maryland suburbs of Washington, D.C.
“I’m getting out,” he said. “I need you to sell all my stocks.”
It was hardly the first conversation I’d had with him about selling, so I wasn’t surprised. The headlines about the markets and the economy were dire. Many people worried that the U.S. might fall into a second Great Depression.
The next evening, a client in southwestern Virginia called – a woman whose money I had managed since 1990 for no charge because we were close. She wanted out, too.
The following evening, a client in Ohio told me to “sell everything.”
These were the only three of my clients who jettisoned their stocks. Still, it’s fascinating to me that they all lived in separate states, yet they all bailed on consecutive days. In our interconnected world, we’re all tuned into the same buzz.
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