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Ignoring the News
Old 02-13-2009, 05:07 AM   #1
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Ignoring the News

Does anyone totally ignore the news, tv, msnbc,cnn,barrons,wsj related to finances and just live/practice life based on their own financial principles. How has this fared for you? Has it reduced the stress in your life ?
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Old 02-13-2009, 07:06 AM   #2
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Totally? But I try. Certainly feel much less stressed when I do not turn on the news. Probably a better husband, father etc. as a result. Do you try to avoid the news?
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Old 02-13-2009, 07:19 AM   #3
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Absolutely!
I am in firm control of my exposure to the media.
I never watch TV during the day, and very rarely at night. I do play the radio all day for "right now" local, state and national news.
I get a lot of my current news right here. TY all!
I read news online if I'm in the mood to depress myself.
msn.com is a favorite.
I subscribe to several e-newsletters - Savvy Senior, M*, Military.com, GovExec, FedWeek, TriCare bulletin, and Dummies. Some are read, some are simply deleted after a quick topic scan.

Net result ? Media-driven stress reaction? what's that?
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Old 02-13-2009, 07:28 AM   #4
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Completely ignoring macro trends might not be a good idea -- it is good to be reasonably informed -- but obsessing less over the fearmongering news is probably good for lowering blood pressure and stress levels, and just might lead to less carnage in the markets and the economy.
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Old 02-13-2009, 07:58 AM   #5
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I'm a critic of the news media after too many experiences in which they got it all wrong about something I was involved with. But survival at w*rk included getting ahead of the news stories that affected my areas of responsibility. Nothing can ruin a morning like getting a call at 0600 from the boss asking, "have you seen this story?", quickly followed by, "what the hell were your people doing?" For those that haven't experienced this joyful experience - the correct answer is never: "I don't know anything about it". And you never want to hear, "why is it I heard about this from some reporter before I heard from you?"

Now that I no longer work in the 29-story puzzle palace downtown, when I occasionally run across one of those stories that would once ruin my day, I just cluck my tongue and think "looks like somebody's day is going to be interesting."

At the same time my interest in financial news has increased and I've had to learn how to apply filters to that topic. While working I could go years without paying attention to the markets. There were a couple of times that I went a year or more without even opening brokerage statements. Many crises came and went without my knowledge, and my only comment would be something, "looks like last July really sucked, but it's all better now".

The current economic, market, and political conditions are interesting as hell. Again I'm using interesting as in the old curse, "May you live in interesting times". But interesting times bring opportunities if you have the right mindset, some courage, and a decent bit of luck.

So I watch and read but have learned to maintain some emotional distance. And there have been occasions in the last few months in which I've backed away because the media madness was too much to deal with. But for the most part I really wish that this would all just go away and I could open up a brokerage statement in a few years and think, "Man, it looks like 2008 really sucked. But it's all better now".
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Old 02-13-2009, 08:14 AM   #6
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I do not watch TV at all during the day and only briefly at night . I read the news but I try not to get sucked into the ultra negative . They over dramatize things and all it does is make me worry about things I have no control over . So for me filtering the news works great .
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Old 02-13-2009, 08:20 AM   #7
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I do not watch TV at all during the day and only briefly at night . I read the news but I try not to get sucked into the ultra negative . They over dramatize things and all it does is make me worry about things I have no control over .
True. Plus, saying "and in other news, 90% or more of Americans are still employed" doesn't get ratings or produce the emotions of greed or fear the financial media want to see in order to get more eyeballs. Average economies with inline markets don't tend to be good for their ratings. Pumping greed in the good times and selling fear in the bad are what butters their bread.
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Old 02-13-2009, 08:22 AM   #8
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I rarely watch CNBC anymore. Sometimes I will catch the 'Nightly Business Report' on PBS. They do a decent job of reporting the news without trying to sensationalize it. But I don't watch it everyday, usually on Friday for the weeks recap.
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Old 02-13-2009, 08:42 AM   #9
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TV watching in youth tied to depression later - International Herald Tribune
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Old 02-13-2009, 10:12 AM   #10
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I'd love to ignore the news, but it's so entertaining. I check CNN.com during the day, and watch NBC nightly news each evening (recorded).
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Old 02-13-2009, 10:20 AM   #11
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I would regard ignoring the news as being equivalent to hiding my head in the sand.

On the other hand, there is no reason to beat myself to death with it! For example, I know that there is a stimulus bill in the works, and I guess it is 1420 pages of pork and maybe under $800 billion. However, there is no point in reading about all the individual pork sections and raising my stress level. I also know that what it is, and whether it is, is beyond my control so there is no point in fixating on it and becoming overly aggravated.

Also, there is a difference between reading the news and responding to the news. Like some have mentioned, I have my financial plan and try to stick to it. Market timing is (theoretically) not part of it. I try to keep my eye on the golden ring (see my sig line).

I only watch Cramer when he doesn't aggravate or upset me. In other words, not often. He's kind of cute and entertaining sometimes, though.
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Old 02-13-2009, 10:22 AM   #12
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My TV is stuck on three channels, Military, History and Western. I have a 9 to 10 year cash/bond position. I can't change what is going to happen so I don't watch the money porn shows exept every now and then I watch Cramer cause he cracks me up. If during the next 10 years my equity holdings go to zero I will have a problem but most of society will have worse of a problem.
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Old 02-13-2009, 10:34 AM   #13
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I scan the headlines of the paper and the net occasionally. That's enough for me as I have enough going on in my own little world.....
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Old 02-13-2009, 10:47 AM   #14
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I follow the news simply because the topic being discussed is quite interesting. I'm not that involved with the market, so I have no emotional involvement save for my son who is a third year teacher in NYC and I'm hoping he will keep his job.

Most of the day to day crap and parsing of the market and it's components is no different than a horse race. Good for those actively trading, useless for long term investors.

I notice that there are many opinions by so-called experts spanning the spectrum of gloom to exhiliration.

Wall street was established to simply trade stock of active companies. It has evolved in recent years to a circus-casino with flashing lights, clowns, puppet shows, and hot reporters all trying to lure the suckers in to put their hard earned cash down into sound investments. Of course the house has it's take, just like in Vegas.

Conventional wisdom as to investment is out the window and never made any sense to me. Companies on average grow slowly, like the economy and US population. Walls street tells you and scares you differently. So now we have a crisis where the market is IMHO, priced where it should be. So it is no crisis, just noise.

Sit back, grab some popcorn and simply watch the show, a new group of suckers will sooner or later refuel the insanity.

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Old 02-13-2009, 11:17 AM   #15
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When I am at home, I almost always keep CNBC as background noise during the day. But I still completely ignore what they say.
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Old 02-13-2009, 11:35 AM   #16
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YES! I used to watch CNBC quite a bit (for more than a decade), preferring that over the more generic news networks that spent way too much time on politics, disasters and celebrities. I found business and economic news interesting.

But now I can't stand CNBC at all. They have been going berserk - first with all the economy disasters non-stop freak-out. And now it's even worse with the OMG what is the government going to do already or screw-up freak-out. The media has just gone rabid with the current financial situation and there is always a freak-out du jour!

Oh yeah, and the explanations are usually dead wrong! And it seems like the financial networks are now totally into editorializing and agendas which is a huge departure from a decade ago.

So off with it all! I've got better things to do, and my life is richer for it. My investment strategy does not require me to be informed of current events.

If DH turns on the TV and it's news - I put on my iPod and headphones (the in-ear ones that really block out external sound). Those have been a sanity saver!

Audrey

P.S. - Well, OK, I do peruse various financial websites several times a week, so that keeps me well enough informed.
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Old 02-13-2009, 11:59 AM   #17
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Does anyone totally ignore the news, tv, msnbc,cnn,barrons,wsj related to finances and just live/practice life based on their own financial principles. How has this fared for you? Has it reduced the stress in your life ?
As a regular reader of this forum, that would be impossible.
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Old 02-13-2009, 12:04 PM   #18
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As a regular reader of this forum, that would be impossible.
Not really. You can skim over the stuff you wish to ignore. You don't have it force fed into your ears!

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Old 02-13-2009, 12:11 PM   #19
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Not really. You can skim over the stuff you wish to ignore. You don't have it force fed into your ears!

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Okay, you got me. I'm addicted.
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Old 02-13-2009, 06:16 PM   #20
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I beat myself to death with the news and I am not afraid to admit it. I am a newsaholic; gotta have it! When I FIRE, the TV is gone, except for football season and the Miss Hooters contest.
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