Coronavirus (COVID-19) and market volatility

We wanted to take a moment to update you on our response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, and the steps we’re taking to ensure the safety of our colleagues and clients. We also want you to know we’re here to help.

We’ve made the decision to temporarily close our offices based on guidance from the Chief Medical Officer, Public Health England and government advice. As always, our top priority is to protect both the health and safety of our colleagues and clients, so we have postponed all face-to-face meetings and replaced them with telephone and video calls, where appropriate.

Global stock market volatility

The current coronavirus pandemic has caused significant global stock market volatility and concerns for many people worried about the impact on their pension, savings and investments. We fully understand why you may be feeling overwhelmed by all of these events. These are some of the most unprecedented and difficult market conditions since the global financial crisis in 2008.

However, we would like to reassure you that we are closely monitoring the situation and the impact this is having on the markets. It’s understandable to ask for advice about what you should do when stock markets are volatile and the value of a portfolio decreases. However, it’s just as important to ask, ‘What should I not do?’

Keep in mind long-term goals

The worst thing to do is sell investments during a period of volatility if the markets have fallen, especially if your long-term objectives haven’t changed. Panic-selling may often be a natural first reaction to a drop in the value of your hard-earned funds. But however difficult it might seem, it is important to remember why you chose to invest originally, think long term and stay the course.

In some situations, it may present an opportunity to re-balance portfolios, or for some investors to acquire additional investment opportunities while prices are lower. For other investors that hold sizeable investments, or for those concerned about the impact on pension income, we’d urge you not to panic. Your pension and investments should always be seen as long-term commitments – and this is the worst time to sell.

Selling is the worst thing to do

The stock market volatility that we’ve been seeing in recent weeks, while unsettling, shouldn’t lead you to panic about the future. However, we do understand that these current market conditions may be posing some extremely difficult questions, especially if you are at or nearing retirement.

It’s also important not to obsessively watch the markets. History shows markets can rise quickly from sudden falls. Panicking when your portfolio decreases drastically and selling is the worst thing to do. Patience, not panic, is essential during these difficult times.

Beware of the scammers

Finally, scammers will always look to exploit periods of heightened sensitivity and uncertainty – and we have already seen them evolve their practices due to this situation. Be on the lookout if you are approached to sell your investments and to move them to a so-called ‘safe’ account or investment.

Often, these scammers will also use the latest news developments to lure investors into scams. Cybercrooks are hoping to exploit your fears with phishing emails designed to steal money, obtain personal information and infect computers. If you are approached by any company or individual recommending that you cash in or transfer your investments, contact your adviser immediately.

We’re here to help you

We want to reassure you that we are here to discuss any concerns you may have and recognise that this is a fast-moving situation. Our advisers will continue to revisit these practices as required, and we’ll keep you up to date with the latest developments on our website. You can contact Reeves Financial on 01403 333145 or email areeves@reevesfinancial.co.uk for more information.

This is for your general information and use only and is not intended to address your particular requirements. The content should not be relied upon in its entirety and shall not be deemed to be, or constitute, advice. Although endeavours have been made to provide accurate and timely information, there can be no guarantee that such information is accurate as of the date it is received or that it will continue to be accurate in the future. No individual or company should act upon such information without receiving appropriate professional advice after a thorough examination of their particular situation. For Reeves Financial, published by Goldmine Media Limited, Basepoint Innovation Centre, 110 Butterfield, Great Marlings, Luton, Bedfordshire LU2 8DL Content copyright protected by Goldmine Media Limited 2017. Unauthorised duplication or distribution is strictly forbidden.