BOSTON (CBS) – Let’s start the New Year with a look at your portfolio. We love to look at the numbers when the market is up but when it’s down we often bury our heads in the sand.

I hear the groans out there. We can’t ignore what is going on in the stock market. It’s in the news every day. First 6 months of last year we were all pleased with the stock market. The next six months we were whiplashed and it’s continuing.

For 2015 the DOW was down 2.2%, the S&P 500 almost 1% (0.7), the Russell 2000 down almost 6% (5.7) and the bright spot was the Nasdaq up almost 6% (5.7). The Nasdaq is heavily weighted in technology and internet stocks and can be very risky.

The energy sector was down 24%. We love the cheaper oil prices. They just filled up our oil tank and it cost half as much as did 2 years ago. So that’s a plus for my pocket but not for the oil companies or the folks working for them.

So why did the bull market run out of steam? China’s growth slowed down, the Federal Reserve started to raise interest rates for real, we have cheaper oil, we have a stronger dollar and the ongoing financial crisis in Greece and all of the Euro countries. And our global outlook with ISIS attacking soccer matches and Christmas parties is unsettling.

I have heard from listeners who want to jump ship. They want to get out of the stock market and go all cash. That’s not a great idea. If you have a long term goal, I would suggest you sit tight and weather the storm. Over the last 40 years the DOW has only been down 10 of those years.

The Dow in 2008 dropped 34%, the S&P was down 38%. And the last 6½ years we have been in a bull market and many of us have benefited greatly from it with double digit returns every year except one.

Think of a down market as a sale. A time to buy!


You can hear Dee Lee’s expert financial advice on WBZ NewsRadio 1030 each weekday at 1:55 p.m., 3:55 p.m., and 7:55 p.m.

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