Debbie and I sat down and watched an old movie recently. It was The Paper Chase. You might remember that it was the story of a Harvard Law School student who falls in love with one of his professor’s daughters. You might also remember that the professor was played by John Houseman. If you never saw the movie, you still might remember John Houseman playing the wise old sage in the commercials of, then, brokerage giant, Smith Barney. “They make money the old fashioned way,” he would say, “they earn it.”

I’m sure I have lost all readers under age 40 by now as The Paper Chase, John Houseman, and Smith Barney were all gone before the 40 and under crowd was even born. But the old fashioned way to making money and investing still remain.

Making money at investing, like all other endeavors, requires hard work, discipline and perseverance. The hard work begins with research and study of the investment choices available. It continues with analyzing the macro economic picture to help ascertain what the overall investment climate is like now and into the near future. The hard work then turns into developing a strategy to invest that will have the best chance of achieving the stated goals for the investment. The next phase of the work entails implementing the strategy and monitoring it into the future.

The discipline comes from keeping consistent with your investing. Continuing to add to the portfolio. Making sure you don’t lose sight of your long range goal because of some short term turbulence. Discipline is required to stick with your strategy even in the face of some new trend that everyone is doing.

Finally making money at investing requires perseverance. Setbacks will happen. An investment may not work out as well as you thought it might, but you can’t quit. You can’t give up on the strategy. The rules can change, but you have to adjust and keep moving forward.

I’m not a “wise old sage” even though some in our office refer to me as “old man.” But I have been through a few things and what I’ve found is that the people who have been successful investing have all joined me in the hard work, shown discipline by sticking with their plans and had the perseverance to keep going through the difficult times.

Try making money the old fashioned way… it just might work.



Mike Berry is a Registered Representative offering securities through Cambridge Investment Research, Inc., a Broker/Dealer, Member FINRA/SIPC. Investment Advisor Representative, Cambridge Investment Research Advisors, Inc., a Registered Investment Advisor. Legacy Wealth Management, LLC and Cambridge are not affiliated. Cambridge does not offer tax advice.

Copyright ©2017 Mike Berry. All Rights reserved. Commercial copying, duplication or reproduction is prohibited.