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Be a Lifetime Investor

By Motley Fool Staff - Apr 21, 2016 at 3:04PM

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It's not about what the market is doing right now or even what it will do tomorrow. The challenge is committing for the long term.

Even though many people treat it that way, the stock market is not like betting on sports.

If you place a wager on an NBA game, for example, it might be very important to know that Lebron James stayed out late partying on South Beach. In the stock world, it's easy to react to short-term news like that, but that's not the smartest way to invest.

In this clip from Rule Breaker Investing, Motley Fool co-founder David Gardner explains the big advantage of being a long-term investor. Listen in to hear how long-term investing is much more profitable and reliable than short-term cycle timing.

A transcript follows the video.

This podcast was recorded on Oct. 28, 2015. 

David Gardner: No. 2, speaking of a long time: Be a lifetime investor. Can we just agree right now? In fact, if you're driving right now, or maybe you're walking your dog or just jogging as you listen to this week's podcast, I want you to pull over and stop for a second and say to me, "Dave, I agree. I'm committed as a longtime investor." You can even do it in Hal's voice. Remember Hal from 2001: A Space Odyssey, talking to a much more famous Dave, back then? "Affirmative, Dave. I read you." That's kind of what I want you to be thinking and saying right now, that you are going to be an investor for your life.

Too many of us are thinking in terms of whether the market is hot now or not. And the truth is, the best way to make money is by using the market's compounding power, 10% per year. There are very few things in this world that appreciate steadily a 10% per year over a century, which is where the stock market has been over the last century. And I submit it's going to be probably about the same the next century. There are very few things that are that good, so darn it, be a lifetime investor!

OK, crank the car up again, yank your dog forward, let's keep moving, let's jog forward, but together, for a lifetime. I hope you do the same with your personal relationships as you do with your money. Sadly, too many people are too short-term-oriented, especially when it comes to the market. I hope not with personal relationships. 

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