The dilemma of what stocks to buy is particularly tricky right now.
If you want to own shares of companies, you’ll be getting into a market that began rising more than nine years ago and now sits near an all-time high. The bull market, now 3,453 days old, will be the longest in history by the end of trading on Wednesday. And the Standard & Poor’s 500, the broadest measure of U.S. stocks, hit a record Tuesday for the first time in six months.
Income investors like dividend stocks because owning dividend payers lets them collect predictable streams of cash year after year. By focusing on dividend stocks that grow their payouts over time, investors can even seek to build a portfolio that will produce income that rises along with costs of living.
Investors pulled money from both stock and bond funds in the past week, and shifted money within U.S. equities to health care and out of tech and financials.
According to Bank of America Merrill Lynch, investors pulled $3.6 billion out of equity mutual funds and ETFs, with $2.6 billion out of U.S. stocks. But as investors took a defensive posture on stocks, they also dumped government debt, with net outflows of $1.5 billion from Treasurys and government bonds, the biggest since December 2016. Overall, bonds lost a total of $2.3 billion.
Stock-market investors shouldn’t get too used to the dollar rally, Goldman Sachs analysts warned Friday.
They expect the U.S. dollar to weaken by 7% over the next 12 months and urged investors to factor that outlook into their equity positions.
Stock prices in Chinese education companies listed in Hong Kong have come under pressure after the central government issued a draft proposal that would tighten regulations.
Shares in a number of the companies plunged on Monday, with some closing nearly 40 percent lower, though they began clawing back some of the losses in Tuesday trading.