Distressed Investing Blog

George Putnam, one of the country's leading turnaround and distressed investing professionals, shares his timely insight on the economy and turnaround investing opportunities.

Whither this Election Year Market?

Excerpted from the May 2012 Issue

May 24, 2012

As political posturing and rhetoric continues to escalate, most of us are wondering about the election’s potential impact on our investments.

Historically, the stock market generally does well in a presidential election year. The S&P has risen in 12 of the 15 presidential election years since 1952. However, the trend has been less clear in recent election years, with stocks showing significant losses in 2000 and 2008. While election year results have generally been good, the best returns have typically come in the year before the election year—on average more than double the annual return rates seen in each of the other three years.

Much has also been made of how each candidate—and his respective party’s philosophies—will impact Wall Street. History shows us that the market has tended to respond more favorably to a Republican victory in past elections. In short, although there is some logic to the presidential cycle, you shouldn’t be trying to time the stock market—in an election year or any other time. Read more historic election year statistics.

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Distressed Investing Blog

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Are the "Experts" Usually Wrong? Time to Buy Emerging Markets?

If you look longer-term--both backwards and forwards--emerging markets look like much more promising investments...and many of the stocks have decent dividend yields to compensate you in case you have to wait a while for a rebound. Read More.

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Act Now on Tax Losses

Beat Year-End Bounce Rush


With all the stock market volatility this year, many investors probably find themselves holding some stocks in which they have sizable losses. By selling those losers and realizing losses, you can use those losses to offset taxable gains that you may have realized during the year.

Value Stock Profit

Most individual investors consider this investing strategy in December, which means that this tax-loss selling could push the price of some of these stocks even lower--meaning you probably do not want to be selling your losers then. In fact, savvy contrarians should consider buying some of these beaten down stocks to take advantage of that tax-generated downward pressure that goes away on January first.