Winds of Change Won't Always Indicate Direction

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It’s anyone’s guess where the Trump presidency is going to take us, but at least for the immediate future it looks like softening regulations on Wall Street could signal some gains in certain investment categories uykcc3l. A commercial real estate developer at heart, Trump’s imminent rollback on the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act could prove to be a return to a more investment-friendly framework. In short, relaxation of the Volker Rule could expand new opportunities for big banks, which won’t be as restricted in their investing. This, in turn would serve to increase commercial real estate lending and foster more opportunities for investing all around.

At the same time, some believe these rollbacks could spell disaster for the country at large. By taking some of these regulations away—and abandoning some before there’s even been a chance to assess their effectiveness—Trump could be setting the economy up for some long-term collisions that could prove catastrophic—not unlike a recent time many don’t want to remember.

That all noted, I want to put forth a radical idea that you shouldn’t let any of this determine where you’re going to go with your investments.

Not to be a contrarian for contrary’s sake, there’s a lot more to successful investing than simply reacting to news. While I value information and recognize the importance of guideposts that indicate direction—I’ve written a lot about this, of course—it’s important to remember there is no definitive decision, plan or program that’s going to be a blanket guarantee of success for an investor.

Let’s face it—investing always contains an element of chance one could liken to a visit to a gaming table. And as the sloppy half of The Odd Couple’s Oscar Madison once said so eloquently about games of chance, “One thing is certain—there’s no such thing as a sure thing.”

That’s why I’m always hesitant to declare any legislative decisions as delineating success or failure in an investment category. Incorporate the new elements and information into your view of your portfolio and potential projects, but always know that there’s a range of factors augmenting success.

We all know it can pay to be bullish in a bear market, and vice versa. Likewise, I’m not going to let anticipation of one event or another make my decision for me. Again, it’s data that I will objectively synthesize, but it’s only part of what drives my decisions.

So the good news is it may not be necessary to read too closely into analysis, or to trouble yourself if evidence appears cloudy at times.

Opinions can become a rabbit hole and I prefer to keep my head above ground, my eyes open and my mind clear of contrary arguments …