Heather: What’s the matter? You look terrible.
Paul: Haven’t you seen the paper? The stock market went down a lot yesterday. The NASDAQ is down 100 points and the Dow is down 30! My portfolio is in big trouble.
Heather: I knew you had some stock options in this company, but I didn’t know you were so heavily invested in the market.
Paul: I’m invested in the bond market, in derivatives, and I have shares in a lot of companies that took a nosedive yesterday.
Heather: I’m sure you have a good stockbroker who has made sure that your portfolio is diversified and you have different kinds of securities.
Paul: That’s my problem. I don’t have a stockbroker. I decided to invest on my own and to go for less secure stocks hoping for a better return. I thought I could tell the difference between a bear and a bull market as well as the brokers. I guess I was wrong.
Heather: The drop in stock prices won’t last. I’m sure the market will rebound. Just don’t panic and sell everything. The old saying, “buy low, sell high,” is still a good idea, I think.
Paul: I know, I know. I won’t do anything stupid— that is, I won’t do anything even more stupid. I’ll wait to see what happens before taking any action.
Heather: That’s a good idea. Come on. I’ll buy you lunch.
Paul: Thanks. Now that I’m poor, I won’t say ‘no’ to your charity.