Having said that, in the 1980s and 1990s shares rose 19 times out of 20 between November and April as opposed to 50 per cent of the time during the rest of the year, and made gains of 12.5 per cent compared to 1.5 per cent for the latter period.
The problem is everyone knows this old adage now and in the age of the Internet and global trading more people have access to real time information and knowledge.
Perhaps the Mark Twain approach is best having no set guidelines.
“October”, wrote the American writer, “This is one of the peculiarly dangerous months to speculate in stocks.
“The others are July, January, September, April, November, May, March, June, December, August and February.”
Eerily however, in modern times of stress and a busy life, it can be detected that more people are reverting to long holidays and certainly with less activity in the current economic climate, August particularly has become a quiet month as we seem to go continental and wind down for the month.
Maybe we have gone full circle? With the difficulty of perfecting timing, dealing costs and global trading perhaps its better to stay invested, take a long term view and leave the Blackberry at home when you go away?
* Trevor Law is a director with Merito Financial Services located near Solihull. E-mail: email@example.com