Personal Finance January 4, 2016

    As you look ahead to 2016 and beyond, think about what you'd like to accomplish and how you're going to get there. Saving for retirement? Baby on the way? Schwab Intelligent Portfolios® can help you invest for the future, whatever it looks like.

    So how can you get closer to your goals?

    Automate your investing. Chances are you have at least some of your bills on auto-pay. Why not automate your investing as well? If you set up automatic monthly contributions to an investment account, you won't have to make a regular chore out of transferring the money and choosing investments. And the money will be invested before you have a chance to spend it. With Schwab Intelligent Portfolios, you won't even have to worry about periodically rebalancing to ensure your asset allocation stays aligned with the risk tolerance and goals you identified in your profile.

    Don't invest emotionally. It can be easy to panic in a volatile market, and it can be easy to get overconfident when the market is rising. You may sell a particular investment too early because you're worried it's about to drop in value, or you may hold onto an investment long after you should have sold. All of these emotions—panic, greed, fear, loss aversion—can prevent you from achieving the best outcomes. What's another path? A rational, technology-based approach that takes individual investment choices off your hands and doesn't focus on market timing.

    Start now. There's no perfect time to invest—and waiting to save could cost you. Yes, it can be scary to start investing when the market's down or just muddling along. But look at it this way. If you invest a set amount regularly, through the market's inevitable peaks and valleys, you'll be buying more when prices are down and less when prices are up. And over time, even small monthly investments can really add up.

    You can set up a Schwab Intelligent Portfolios account in the time it takes to scroll through your Twitter feed. That's a pretty low level of effort compared to your typical New Year's resolution, and the benefits may last long into the future.

    Investing involves risks including possible loss of principal.

    Periodic investment plans, automatic investing, and rebalancing strategies do not ensure a profit and do not protect against losses in declining markets.

    This information is not intended to be a substitute for specific individualized tax, legal, or investment planning advice. Where specific advice is necessary or appropriate, Charles Schwab & Co., Inc. (“Schwab”) recommends consultation with a qualified tax advisor, CPA, financial planner or investment manager.


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    1. Open an account
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