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Monevator is an investment site, whatever the weather

Fear and greed index showing extreme greed at the time of posting

This is a testing time for everyone. As we begin to isolate ourselves and the economy is put into a coma to try to save the patient, it may seem like an existential threat.

So I understand why at Monevator we’ve received such a diverse range of feedback on our articles over the past few weeks.

As recently as mid-February, some readers ostentatiously shrugged and said “what crisis?” when I wrote about the virus threat to their portfolios.

But soon enough, as the scale of the challenge was realized, others complained it was not the time to talk about money.

I was several times accused of not caring about people – only about my portfolio.

This despite clearly stating in my articles that I understood that anyone dying was a tragedy for all concerned.

It’s hard to write that statement in less than a few  hundred words without sounding ridiculously glib. That’s because it really goes without saying.

My own mother is well over 70, and we got her isolating early. Time will tell.

Other readers have said they have a vulnerable daughter, or a son risking daily exposure as a doctor, or that they themselves have some kind of extra-susceptibility to the disease.

They have often coupled this with questions or opinions asking why – at a time like this – we are writing about the likely economic hit from the virus or the lockdown, or why we’re discussing whether to sell your shares or to buy more.

Don’t we understand people are going to die?

Yes, we do.

Resistance

As I said, I understand it’s a tough time. You can’t argue against people’s feelings, and I don’t blame anyone for being fearful or single-minded.

But let me be clear.

Monevator is an investing blog. We are here to help people manage and grow their personal wealth. We’ll do that through booms and busts, bull markets and bear markets.

This doesn’t stop because people are getting ill or dying. It doesn’t stop because we’re all hunkering down and fearing for our jobs. It doesn’t stop because our retirement portfolios have dropped by a quarter in the space of four weeks.

On the contrary, for exactly those reasons and others we will continue to talk about money, investing, and the economy.

And continue and continue.

Bluntly: however many people die.

Because that is what this site does. Doing what we do will be our tiny contribution to the bigger picture of keeping the world turning and getting through this horror show.

What else do people expect? For the Monevator home page to redirect to the World Health Organization? Should that also apply to the BBC’s weather pages?

Is it frivolous that people are watching movies in self-quarantine when they could be reading about the daily misery unfolding in Italy and potentially on our doorstep?

Of course not.

Whether you’re feeling anxious about your portfolio or your pension or you couldn’t give two hoots about it is up to you.

I’m not here to say what should matter to you.

If you think it’s distasteful to write, as I did a few weeks ago, of the likely unintended consequences of shutting down the economy – including plenty of bad non-virus related health outcomes, incidentally – and you’d prefer to read another social media post demanding someone do something, anything, then by all means go read those instead.

We’ll still be here when you get back.

That’s the whole point.

Recovery

Monevator will keep writing about personal finance, investing, and the economy in the weeks and months ahead. This will be our overwhelming focus.

If you think that’s wrong and our site should be turned over to a daily roll call of the dead then please do take a break for a while.

I honestly wouldn’t blame you. There are many things far more important than money, and your loved ones are top of the list.

By all means ignore the financial aspect of your life for the next six months. If you can afford to do so then it may well be the best thing for you. There’s more than enough else to worry about.

But discussing personal finances, investing, and the economy is what we do.

We’re just a couple of guys working on this website in our spare time, and 99.99% of the world couldn’t care less what we write about even in the good times.

But some people have generously told us over the years that we’ve made a difference to their financial lives. That matters to us.

I don’t think a reader fretting about their finances and turning up at Monevator to find our last post was a ‘Good Night and God Bless’ from February on account of the virus would do anybody any good.

Quite the contrary.

So we’ll keep on doing what we do, writing about money and investing, for anyone who wants or needs our site, for whenever you’re ready to read us.

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{ 76 comments… add one }
  • 51 Stuart Harrison March 17, 2020, 9:56 pm

    Thank you. I value your articles as you are like a fresh set of eyes and a second opinion to my financial considerations / worries that have me distracted from focusing on the big things s at this time. Please keep going.

  • 52 Pinkney March 17, 2020, 9:58 pm

    All I can say is please don’t stop writing and giving financial advice. Let me make that clear don’t bloody let the bastards get you down. I have old relatives and very fragile friends I don’t come to this blog for advice on how best to support their health I come to read objective opinion on economics and finance. A lot of people will be under extreme stress due to the impact of this event on their income as well as health. This site helps immensely with the financial side of the equation and having followed the advice on this site I personally need to only worry about my family’s health now. That is a fantastic achievement which ironically has had a very positive impact on my health. Thanks and thanks again.

  • 53 Sparschwein March 17, 2020, 10:04 pm

    Right on @TI. This site has been invaluable, and that’s without being a true believer of the “passive” gospel.

  • 54 Ecomiser March 17, 2020, 10:06 pm

    I come here to read about finance. Covid-19 is having an effect on my finances, it helps to see “DO NOT SELL.” in a nice friendly font on a website I trust, not that I was going to sell anyway.
    If I want to know the effect Covid-19 could have on my health, there are plenty of other places shouting that – and it’s much more frightening to learn that I’m considered “at risk” than to see all the red on my portfolio.
    Keep up the good work, and thanks for all you’ve done already.

  • 55 TARDIS March 17, 2020, 10:17 pm

    Another healthcare professional saying I really appreciate your articles. Although in a front line role I’m not in a high risk group luckily.
    Reading you updates helps me keep perspective and realise I’m in a privileged position having such a secure job at this time.
    As our microbiologist says: this too will pass.

  • 56 The Weasel March 17, 2020, 10:34 pm

    Thank you for bringing us clarity on investment matters without trying to sell us sh*t.

    That’s why you rule.

  • 57 Maximus March 17, 2020, 11:23 pm

    @TI – Of course you must carry on enlightening us masses; we’d all be in a far worse financial state without you, that’s for sure.
    And please, more swearing and CAPITAL LETTERS in the future…

  • 58 Prometheus March 18, 2020, 2:32 am

    Panic can exhibit itself in many forms, particularly striking out in an attempt to garner attention.

    Back to more serious issues: I’ve up’d my pension contribution to max…..

    Keep up the good work TI!

  • 59 Don (aka MR) March 18, 2020, 6:49 am

    Hi “The Investor” team,

    Good to see you are still writing great stuff! I’ve been away for a while…
    I’ve been taking small positions in great stocks as the market tanks. I’ll probably be doing so the entire way down over the next few months.
    Good luck and great content 🙂

  • 60 Herbert21 March 18, 2020, 7:42 am

    Here here! ✊

  • 61 Vanguardfan March 18, 2020, 8:19 am

    Keep up the good work. I’d like to continue to see comments on the economic impact as things unfold.

  • 62 Vanguardfan March 18, 2020, 8:35 am

    More specifically. People are obviously going to feel distressed at this time, and this will come out in all sorts of stress reactions. We need to cut each other some slack, all of us.
    I’ve now come through the stage of reading and commenting about the virus, I’m sufficiently terrified.
    So I will try to keep to investing/money related things, there will be plenty of that. Give it a couple of weeks and many people will be facing an income apocalypse.

  • 63 Dan Bond March 18, 2020, 8:43 am

    Thanks for keeping doing what you’re doing and actually assuring us that you understand where you fit into this horror show and that you will not give up on the hugely valuable work you do to keep one of the cogs of the world spinning. You’ve definitely changed my life for the better thru your advice and education so thank you. Everybody needs to do what they can, and I’m grateful your gift of time and insight. I hope your family and mum stay well!

  • 64 Vanguardfan March 18, 2020, 8:48 am

    Does anyone have any insight into the food supply chain and logistics? Along with healthcare supplies, securing food and fuel seem to be the highest priorities for government action.

  • 65 ChesterDog March 18, 2020, 9:49 am

    Steady as she goes – Monevator does a great job through thick and thin.

    Even when the proverbial is hitting the fan, we need to be focussed on keeping on keeping on. You help to keep that focus.

    Thank you.

  • 66 Mark March 18, 2020, 12:51 pm

    Hi Monevator team
    Also long time reader first time commenting. Just to say thanks very much for all your hard work educating people like me who had no idea of finance before you guys, Tim Hale and Lars, whom you put me onto. Please keep up the good job you do especially the essential links on the weekend. On a personal note, currently on the retirement travel jaunt in Cambodia with the wife who also just retired from the NHS (impeccable timing) which has all been rescheduled, waiting to see if our flight back to the UK on Saturday still happens as we watch the world lockdown around us. Stay healthy and once again thanks.

  • 67 mjcross March 18, 2020, 6:29 pm

    We read you. We need you. Keep going… please 🙂

  • 68 Dorf March 19, 2020, 9:16 am

    Want to add my voice to the others thanking you and the other Monevator contributors for being part of the resistance…”Your courage, your cheerfulness, your resolution will bring us victory,” etc. I look forward to reading your book!

  • 69 Jonny March 19, 2020, 9:56 am

    Keep up the good work (I’ve been reading you since early 2011, and you’re the ONLY blog who I have subscribed to, and still subscribe to for email updates). 🙂

  • 70 Frank March 19, 2020, 10:25 am

    Grateful to hear you will continue to do what you do. I look forward to your posts -particularly the weekend one! Your writing and practical advice has informed and adjusted my investment approach over the years.

  • 71 mitac March 19, 2020, 11:43 am

    Money has no morals or ethics – keep up the good work

  • 72 Mohammad Javed March 19, 2020, 10:56 pm

    Thank you for all the articles you put out there. It was reading up on articles from this site that have made me more financially aware & make better use of my money.

    Carry on being awesome, as mentioned its an investing blog, not the coronavirus blog.

  • 73 Andrew G March 20, 2020, 6:33 pm

    70+ supportive comments already but I’ll add another one anyway. I need you to write dispassionately about money now more than ever. As the best financial blog for Brits this is your Churchillian moment. ‘Do not sell’ was your ‘we will fight them on the beaches’.

  • 74 Ray March 24, 2020, 11:21 am

    Thanks – do keep going!

  • 75 Hare April 2, 2020, 6:51 pm

    Thank you for continuing. I have family over 70, a partner in a risk category and friends who now have no income and there will be no government help: nor do they qualify for benefits.

    I’ve been planning for years for ‘being okay financially when bad stuff goes wrong’ and as a result we are okay financially.

    Because of that we are able to support others who have been hit by this, whether that be donating to the fundraiser for a local independent cafe, spending money with local businesses rather than big supermarkets or paying for services and goods at super small businesses who’ve been hit hard.

    We couldn’t be doing any of that if we weren’t in a good financial position and continuing to be in one is my plan for helping the country out. Stay home, stay safe, stay healthy includes financial health as well as physical. I’m not an NHS volunteer but I am a ‘financial’ volunteer and I intend to be supporting local people who need financial and other support in the months to come.

  • 76 Allan April 16, 2020, 7:26 pm

    First ever comment on the site despite reading for years. I whole-heartedly agree with this – its the very reason you are here and the reason I come here. Keep up the good work.

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