With regard to investment, u probably have asked yourself the question above…
The answer:- it depends 🙂
When we invest, there are 3 possible outcomes:-
a) market goes up
b) market goes sideways
c) market goes down.
For lump sum investment, we make profit if (a) occurs. On the other hand, (b) and (c) are not uncommon as illustrated in the following diagrams:-
Periods when S&P Index (US) was trading sideways
Magnitude & Frequency of Market Drawdown
Let me now define dollar cost averaging.
Dollar Cost Averaging (“DCA”) involves investing a fixed dollar amount at regular intervals (monthly/quarterly etc) over a period of time. By setting aside a fixed amount consistently, it allows you to manage your emotion while taking advantage of market volatility to buy more during a market correction.
My Investment Director recently did an analysis on DCA, assuming certain scenarios, using the following parameters:-
a) a fixed amount of $1,000 is invested monthly;
b) a period of 49 months; and
c) a sideway market (market starts and ends at the same level) as well as a down market
1st scenario: Market Goes Up and Down a Lot (Up +120%, Down -90%)
2nd scenario: Market Goes Up and Down a bit (Up +30%, Down -30%)
3rd scenario: Market goes down -48%
So long there is volatility, DCA outperforms lump sum in a sideway market (prices starts and ends around the same price) or in a down market.
Reason why DCA outperforms in a sideway market
The fact that more units are bought during the down leg allow faster compounding when the market recovers.
Key Takeaways on DCA
a) Takes timing out of the equation (useful given the unpredictable nature of markets)
b) Helps to manage the emotional aspect of your investment journey (instead of looking at market corrections as a stressful period, we should now see such corrections as good opportunities to accumulate more units)
c) Ability to generate return in a sideway market
If you have any question on DCA strategy or connect with me.
Article is written by Thomas Ong Cheow Siang, Financial Advisory Manager.
Important: The information and opinions in this article are for general information purposes only. They should not be relied on as professional financial advice. Readers should seek independent financial advice that is customised to their specific financial objectives, situations & needs. This advertisement or publication has not been reviewed by the Monetary Authority of Singapore.
??Straight out of uni in the mid-1990s, I joined Prudential Assurance, wanting to have a career that connects with people and have flexible working hours.
⏰⏳After a decade with Prudential, I moved to Financial Alliance. Here, having an array of financial service partners allows me to present more choices to my clients.
????In my personal life, I have 2 school-going boys. It will be awhile before they fly the nest– I became a parent late. As such should they choose a university education, the tuition fees will come at a time that clashes with me about to retire.
?️?So I bide my time setting aside, preserving and growing my assets meticulously. All the while I dream of the mountains I will climb and the causes I will champion, without consideration of work the Monday after.
??I’d like to enable my clients to have a retirement dream too. I hope they retire in dignity and live their last chapter with financial freedom!
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