The S&P 500,which is widely considered one of the best measures of the U.S. stock market, finished the year up over 11%. After some significant ups and downs over the past few years, the price of oil stabilized and posted some nice gains over the second part of 2016. So why did I lose money or break-even in my brokerage accounts for 2016? This is an important question that needs a closer look. A well-diversified portfolio should be up in 2016. In my experience, there are a few things that can cause investors to lose money when the market is up. Ask yourself these questions:
1.Was my account being traded too often with lots of buying and selling, called churning?
2.Do I have concentrated positions (a significant percentage of my investments) in things that dropped in value?
3.Is my broker getting me into investments at a high price and selling me out at a lower price?
If your answer to any one of these questions is “yes,” and your losses exceed $50,000, you should contact an experienced securities arbitration attorney for a complimentary review of your potential case. Our firm represents individual and institutional investors in cases against financial advisors, and we are happy to give you a free initial evaluation.