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For those who didn’t sell in May, now what?

By Dian Vujovich

If you’re an index-oriented investor and live by the wisdom of investment adages, had you sold in May, well, you’d be poorer today.

With all three of the major indices tumbling big time on the last day of July 2014, the damage isn’t really all that horrible. For instance, the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell over 317 points today to close at 16,563.30, according to Bloomberg. But on the plus side, that dive left the DJIA’s year-to-date return at a plus 1.20 percent.

The S&P 500s year-to-date index fared better, up 5.66 percent for the year. The NASDAQ Composite Index performed similarly with y-t-d gains of plus 5.33 percent.

Compare all three indices with their performance on April 30th, the day before the “Sell in May and go away” investment adage was to begin and in the words of Gomer Pyle, “Surprise. Surprise”—- you’d be better off today than if you had been an investment adage follower.

At the end of April, the DJIA was up less than 1 percent, 0.85 percent, for the year, the S&P 500 was up 2.84 percent and NASDAQ down 0.69 percent, according to Yahoo Finance.

History has shown that the markets tend to be less robust during the six-month stretch from May through October— since 1928 the S&P 500 has gained an average of 1.9 percent during that time frame. But historical average or not, markets are markets and perform in their own very special unique ways every day of every year.

But the big question going forward is, “Now what?”. With wars going on around the world, economies failing, the average working guy and gale loosing financial ground and purchasing power month after month, etc., etc., the performance future for the indices looks dicey at best.

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