Why the election doesn’t matter for your portfolio

(It is 7:24am MST on 11/6/12.  Polls in Colorado and in most of the nation are open).

If you’re investing, it is for the long term.  Everything else is speculating. And investing should mean a very broadly diversified global portfolio of equities and bonds. So what are the long-term factors for investment success?  One of them is most certainly not who is sitting in the White House for four years.

Face it: the world is an increasingly complicated, intertwined place, and the same is true of the global economy.  The running joke is that economists exist to make meteorologists look like geniuses.  These economists are SMART.  They have Ph.D.s, access to the most robust data you can find, brilliant experience and insight.  And even they can’t predict, with any certainty, the next jobs number, let alone the direction of markets, the impact of a natural disaster, or what is really going on in China.

These economists fail not because they lack information, but because there is simply too much of it.  There are infinite variables that affect the strength, direction and productivity of the global economy.  One man or woman, even the leader of the free world, cannot flip a switch to set alight or destroy the global economy – there are simply too many other inputs to the equation.

So instead of fretting over results to be announced tonight, successful investors will recognize the long-term nature of success, and focus on reducing those factors that hinder their growing wealth: costs and taxes.  All else is noise.

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