Market Timing: Macro-Approach
I don't believe in trying to time the market...
except for when I make an exception.
Here's my main exception: As a long-term buy-and-hold kind of guy, I try to impose disciplines on myself to keep myself from trading too frequently (frequent trading is generally driven by emotion and ego). (I'm a lot more disciplined in real life than I am in CAPS!).
What I generally try to do is evaluate my holdings in June and sell any that I no longer have great confidence in. I try to sell during a week when stocks are rising, not falling (sell high!). Build up my cash for awhile. Then in the fall I wait for a correction. If we get a good one I use most of my cash to buy the top stocks on my watch list. If we don't, I buy anyway (at some point in November).
As we all know, stocks tend historically to be flat during the summer and early fall and often can be especially volatile in September and early October. So it's a good time to have extra cash and wait for buying opportunities.
I'm sitting on some cash right now. Some of my favorite CAPS picks have been doing lousy lately. I'm looking forward to picking up a couple of them cheap, for my real portfolio, when the leaves start to fall from the trees.