Kiplinger

When Stocks Are Down, Grab Your Wish List

Like every other investor, I felt sick watching the Dow Jones industrial average lose three-eighths of its value in just 40 days in February and March. But I felt a little thrill as well. I had a list. I could buy stocks I loved at a discount. Or, to put it a little differently, I could now become a partner in some of the best businesses in the world at bargain prices.

Incredibly enough, many investors are resistant to bargains. They think of stocks as different from, say, sweaters. Imagine you have had your eye on a sweater in a store window, but it's just too expensive. A few weeks later, it goes on sale at 10% off, but you wait--not enough of a deal. The next week, it's marked down by another 20%, and you

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