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Investing through Volatile Times (Part 2)

Throughout the crazy roller coaster of the past few months, we have continued to maintain our equanimity on the investing front. In fact, I have taken the opportunity to buy stocks (ie index funds) as aggressively as possible. I was so keen on purchasing during this period that I did so every chance I could. The varied prices I have bought at tell the story both of the economic collapse and the stock market recovery (?) we are currently experiencing.

Below are my purchases (dates and prices) of VTSAX, Vanguard’s Total Stock Market Index Fund, which basically tracks the entire U.S. stock market:

DatePrice
2/6/20$82.57
2/26/20$77.08
2/28/20$73.13
3/4/20$77.25
3/10/20$70.77
3/24/20$59.64
3/26/20$63.91
4/9/20$66.64
4/15/20$67.44
4/21/20$66.43
5/1/20$68.99
5/11/20$71.77
5/29/20$74.89
Today (6/8/20) For comparison$79.92
Dates and prices I bought VTSAX from February through May, 2020.

If you follow that trail one by one starting back in February, there’s an incredible $23 per share decline (or about a 28% drop) in about seven weeks (Feb 6 to March 24 on the table). This is followed by an equally phenomenal recovery, as of today’s closing price, of $20 per share (or about a 34% increase) in about the next ten weeks, thus leaving us today within a few dollars of February highs (which was actually $83.79 on February 19th).

Can you believe it?

In other words, in about four months, things got to looking cataclysmically dramatic, but then quickly returned full circle, to the point that, if you were to look merely at the numbers, you’d swear we were back in good times!

Are you befuddled? Stand in line!

Is this market prescient, foreseeing an amazing recovery soon to unfold? Or is it just plain wrong?

Time will tell.

I, for one, look forward to experiencing it, whatever it may be.

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