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Coulda, woulda, shoulda...

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December 21, 2010 – Comments (18)

How many people have had a stock they sold just to see it sky rocket and then have that "coulda, woulda, shoulda" feeling about selling too soon?

I had lots of stocks that went up after I sold, as well as go down and I usually just dismiss what happens after.

I just looked at the last stock I sold.  I guess it was bought in the 50c range and sold in the $2- $2.50 range and now it is in the $6 range.  So, made around $18k on that investment but could have been $45k...

 

MIRASOL RESOURCES LTDMRZ:TSX-V

 

18 Comments – Post Your Own

#1) On December 21, 2010 at 12:16 PM, ChrisGraley (29.88) wrote:

Bought F at like a $1.50 and sold at like $7.50.

 

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#2) On December 21, 2010 at 12:18 PM, motleyanimal (79.87) wrote:

Now I don't feel so bad, having sold AMAT last week at $13.28.

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#3) On December 21, 2010 at 12:23 PM, Option1307 (29.96) wrote:

Definitely had this happen many times. However I just remind myself the reason for selling. Ultimately I was uncomfortable holding the stock any longer, while there was likely a potential for further gains, the downside risk was greater imo.

Selling and taking a profit is never a bad idea! Although watching the stock continue to rocket up is a little frusterating I agree.

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#4) On December 21, 2010 at 12:33 PM, TDRH (99.66) wrote:

My dad says, a bull can make money in the market, a bear can make money in the market, but a hog never makes money.   It is painful to watch though.  

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#5) On December 21, 2010 at 12:40 PM, Valyooo (99.54) wrote:

I bought TCK at $4.02 as one of my first purchases ever, and sold it at $17.47.  A couple of months later it hit $45.

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#6) On December 21, 2010 at 12:55 PM, dwot (46.92) wrote:

Option1307, I actually haven't watched it rocket up.  I just looked at it today for the first time in months.  It was sold 11 months ago.

A number of stocks that I took profits on dropped considerably after so it can go either way.  Roughly, I doubled my husband's retirement savings with that last sell so I really can't complain...

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#7) On December 21, 2010 at 1:02 PM, dwot (46.92) wrote:

I have been so busy with school and travel, today is the first day I have had a chance to look around since last Wednesday and I saw this on home equity.  Because home buying is a leveraged purchase the decline in market value has had a multiple effect on wiping out equity.  We all knew that with all the homeowners with negative equity, but the graphs on Big Picture just give another look at the issue from a macro perspective.

I am back in Vancouver for xmas.  I did 10 hours of driving on snowy roads and then a flight with transfers.  When I left the north it was -26 C and it is 9 C here, or about -15F and 48F...  That's quite the temperature difference...

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#8) On December 21, 2010 at 1:07 PM, davejh23 (< 20) wrote:

Bought Dell in the early 90's (~$0.25) after meeting Michael Dell.  It tripled in the next couple years and then fell back to about $0.25...where I sold.  There was a split during that time, so I made some money, but wanted out after watching the stock fall 65%.  Had I held and sold in 2000, my $5,000 investment would have been worth $96 million. 

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#9) On December 21, 2010 at 1:09 PM, Jbay76 (< 20) wrote:

I had to deal with this just two weeks ago with options express and boy was I bummed.  A gain is a gain, but had I held on for a bit more I would have gained more.  I still got the dividends, which was what I was after anyways, but its still disheartening.  Thank God for beer, it helped me cope :)

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#10) On December 21, 2010 at 1:12 PM, davejh23 (< 20) wrote:

Okay, that didn't actually happen to me, but I bet it happened to some early investor that's kicking themselves now. 

I agree with option: "Selling and taking a profit is never a bad idea!"  I believe "The Intelligent Investor" discusses this...you shouldn't worry about what a stock does after you sell.  If you bought for the right reasons, and sold for the right reasons, there's no shame in an investment that yielded 400% instead of 1,200%. 

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#11) On December 21, 2010 at 1:41 PM, A6Bogie (< 20) wrote:

#6 Val I feel your pain.

I got into TCK at $2.62 and jumped out at $26.54.  Oh well it's all good on the plus side.

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#12) On December 21, 2010 at 3:38 PM, TMFCrocoStimpy (93.33) wrote:

Just remember the flip side to all this:  Got in on HW @$20ish, sold half the position @$30ish, now the other half is <$5.00.  I'm kicking myself for not completely getting out....

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#13) On December 21, 2010 at 4:57 PM, Rehydrogenated (32.23) wrote:

I sold Cemex two days ago and it's gone up 8% since then...

I also owned 3sbio (ssrx) at 4 and now its at 15.

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#14) On December 21, 2010 at 7:16 PM, Imperial1964 (98.31) wrote:

I got out of a short-put position that was slightly in the money (for the Put owner) two years ago when Netflix was just below $30.  I kinda wanted to get assigned, but Netflix isn't really my type of stock, so I got out and used the money to fund my IRA.

NFLX has been flirting with $200 recently.  (That makes me want to buy Puts).

It happens to us all.  However, just because if things were timed perfectly someone could have made more money doesn't mean you would have.  For example, if had been assigned the NFLX I would have sold well before it hit $50.  I am not a competent growth investor.

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#15) On December 21, 2010 at 7:16 PM, Momentum21 (76.04) wrote:

all the time DWOT! : )

If we play the game of looking for those multi-bagger dream stocks we are virtually guaranteed to have to watch some of our loved ones run straight to zero. And by human nature we are more likely to let those continue to crash while we systematically cash-in on "inadequate rewards" in most cases. 

Playing an aggressive strategy and modestly outperforming in an up market isn't going to cut it over time. When the market goes south those risky bets always get pummeled.  

I do think it is a valuable exercise to study the opportunity costs of the winners that we left behind...especially when messing around with penny stocks and biotechs. More people should make the case that "taking a profit is not always good" in some circumstances.

I know people hate using gambling analogies with investing but much can be learned from Poker I believe. Random players will get lucky at times and mistake it for skill...those with skill and a sound strategy can make a living over time simply by playing higher probability odds and recognizing that his/her skill can always be trumped by bad luck on a given day.

Picking the right stocks is overrated and managing ones funds is quite underrated...in my opinion of course. I am still trying to figure it all out, and hopefully will still be around trying in 5 years. : ) 

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#16) On December 22, 2010 at 9:23 AM, Seansonfire (36.91) wrote:

DWOT -

I was thinking about this very issue this morning on my way to work.  As I have the same sellers remorse at times.  And after a cup of coffee and some light jazz on the radio, I realized, shouldn't I be as upset about selling a stock I owned and watching it go up 100% after I sold it, as I should be about watching a stock go up 100% that I never owned in the first place.

Every minute of every day you have the option to buy, sell, short, or cover any stock, so shouldn't you be as mad for missing a stock entirely as for missing a stock by selling it to early? 

And if that is fact, you shouldn't feel bad about selling to early as you have profited from your trade, so what if you missed a 100% gain, you missed one on not owning plenty of other stocks on a daily basis.

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#17) On December 23, 2010 at 12:44 AM, dwot (46.92) wrote:

Momentum21,

I found your comment interesting.

"Playing an aggressive strategy and modestly outperforming in an up market isn't going to cut it over time. When the market goes south those risky bets always get pummeled."

I played a wide range of strategies when I was very active in the market and buy and hold wasn't one of them. I had a trigger happy sell finger... I think my longest hold was about 4 months. I researched stocks with an intention of holding, but my math mind calculated 5 and 10% returns in under a month compounded to massive returns and I would sell. I made 200% in 15 months by doing that and that wasn't modestly out performing the market, through that period it was about 8 times better then what the market did. Right now I am up about 225% and the dow is up less then 10% from where I started.

But, looking back at some of what I owned, some of it made craters in the floor they fell so far...

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#18) On December 27, 2010 at 12:28 PM, Momentum21 (76.04) wrote:

But, looking back at some of what I owned, some of it made craters in the floor they fell so far.. 

So was your research bad or timing just good? : )

I commend you on those returns since I doubt I will ever achieve that type of return in 15 months...but it won't stop me from trying! 

Perhaps we are saying the same thing. Booking 5%-10% monthly on a ticker sounds great to me but unless you are batting 1000 you are going to be dealing with losers simultaneously. That is the big question I ponder...how much is enough on the winners to support the losers?

Right now I have a 70% winner over a 7 day period (just pure luck in the timing obviously). Is that enough considering that I knew I was playing with a potential implosion?  I realize that a relatively significant portion of my portfolio will significantly underperform given my "value-inspired" approach of sorts.  

I don't think buy and hold is the way to go necessarily but I do think it leaves more room for bad timing and makes sense if you are buying less volatile mid to large caps. 

There is no way to avoid risk while playing the game. Even sitting on the sidelines comes at a price if you are waiting to come back in. Therefore since I am committed to playing the game I am equally as committed to finding a strategy that is sustainable.   

 

 

 

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