It's hard not to be a least a little nervous as we edge closer to Donald Trump's inauguration. Democrats, still reeling from the unexpected election loss of the White House, are determined to block his agenda, starting with his cabinet and Supreme Court nominations.
While Republicans, scrambling to justify to voters why they gave them control, struggle with some of Trump's ideas as well, beginning with his stance on the Russian hacking debate.
The market has held up so far, focusing on what will be if Trump's agenda (tax reform, infrastructure investment, repatriation of corporate cash, changes in Obamacare, etc.) is passed, rather than think about what will happen if it isn't.
I don't manage money, but I am still being asked by friends whether they should just take their money out of the market until things shake out. Even knowing all of the cons of doing that, I have to admit that the thought has crossed my mind as well. Is this time different? Is Trump just too unconventional? Are we headed toward a large calamity?
In the end, however, I continue to answer no to these questions. Thus my somewhat cautious outlook in the face of general nervousness. As an advisor, it is now time for you to take a stand. Clients need thought and action leadership and direction.
Now is certainly not the time that you recommend clients take on more risk, but the time to reaffirm that their asset allocations are correct and in line with their long-term goals. Remind them that corporate profits will drive the market in the long-term, not Donald Trump's next tweet.
But also be honest if you are nervous (and cautious). There is nothing wrong with that, as long as you put your feelings into the proper context and remain a calming force.