Markets Are Set for Midterm Classic

Investors should continue a go slow approach for now

By Richard Band, Editor, Profitable Investing

They’re going to try it—and they’re probably going to succeed.  Succeed at what?  Pushing the headline stock market indexes up through their January highs.

More and more, the evidence seems to be painting 2014 as a classic midterm election year.  As this graph from Chart of the Day shows, the Dow has a strong tendency to dip in January of midterm years.  (This year, the DJIA tumbled 5.3% during the first month.)

Stocks then rally through late April.  We’re in that phase now.

Once the seasonal strength dissipates, share prices skid from May through September.  October kicks off a vigorous year-end rally.

This chart, and the 60 years of history it represents, are a major reason why I’m advising a go-slow approach to your stock purchases right now.  Yes, the market will probably gain another few percent between now and late April or early May.  However, the summer will most likely erase all those winnings, and then some.

In short, there’s no hurry to buy.  Be fussy about the prices you pay, and look for the occasional selling opportunity, too.

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