Main Street to Wall Street: We don't buy the rallySubmitted by meekandmild on Fri, 01/08/2010 - 21:58
EW YORK (AP) -- Edward Shook can't resist a bull market.
He rode the one in the late 1990s and lost $350,000 in the dot-com collapse. Shaken but optimistic, he bought into the bull market that followed -- and lost another $350,000 from his portfolio's peak when stocks fell to a 12-year low in early 2009.
Now the 65-year-old roofing contractor from Raleigh, N.C., says "he's getting smart for a change." Even though the Standard & Poor's 500 has climbed 68 percent since March, Shook is largely leaving the stock market "to the crooks that run" it. He's sold shares and bought bonds instead, with no regrets.
Millions of other Americans are steering the same course. After being key players in bull runs of the past, small-time investors have not only stopped buying, they're selling. The question for the new year: If the man on the street doesn't jump back in, will stocks continue to defy gravity?