Saturday, January 10, 2009

Cash is King

While many mutual fund managers boldly charge into stocks regardless of market conditions, others have kept their powder dry by holding more in cash.

For some of these managers, stashing cash has proved a valuable defense against the economic downturn. For others, boosting cash was a prudent decision at a time when stock valuations were too rich for their liking.

Whatever the reason, such moves in many cases mitigated the steep losses that other funds suffered in 2008. Of the 50 best-performing U.S. stock funds that reported cash holdings last year, the average portion in cash was 22.9%, while the median amount was 15.4%, according to data from investment researcher Morningstar Inc.

"[Cash] is part of my bag of tools to help manage people's money prudently and safely," said Ralph Shive, manager of Wasatch First Source Income Equity Fund (FMIEX).

"Holding cash is part of my style, based on the business cycle," said Shive, who typically holds between zero and 5% in cash. "I'm looking forward to a time when I can put it back in. I think about it every week, but I'm not there yet. We've got some serious structural problems."

The manager of one of the country's better-performing funds decided in August 2007 to build cash positions.

Since then, said Monem Salam, deputy portfolio manager at Saturna Capital, which manages the Amana funds, not much new investor money has been put into stocks.

There are still some warning signs for the markets and the economy, Salam said, including whether financial institutions have finished writing down assets, how large the U.S. deficit will be and the scale of job losses.


[By Sam Mamudi, MarketWatch]

Day 10 of a 21-Day Fast

Every Assignment Has a Birthplace

Are you listening? Every assignment God gives you has a birthplace. What is He saying to you today?

On your tenth day of fasting, remember:
- Water needs to be with you at all times
- Rest and relax as much as possible
- Remember your prayer time and prayer place
- Write your thoughts in your prayer journal
- Continue to meditate and listen
- Sugar free mints
- You must commit again to speaking regularly with an accountability partner from your group.

Physical Effects:
- Continued weight loss
- Bad breath
- Your senses become heightened
- Hunger pangs continue

Today’s Quote: “Do you want to hear the voice of the Creator? Do you want to know Jesus more deeply? Do you want to know the direction He desires you to take? I do. I am convinced that we will never walk in the perfect will of God until we seek Him through fasting. God knows your hunger … but He also knows that what you need is Living Water and the Bread of Life. Taste and see that the Lord is good!” (Jentezen Franklin)

Thoughts for your Journal:
- What do you think the specific assignments are that God has for your life?
- What do you currently desire in your life? Remember to pray about your dreams and ask God for guidance in what is best for your life.

Today's Prayer

Dear God,

Today I want to ask Your special cover of protection and blessing upon the people who work in Children's Ministries around the world. Please continue to work through them to spiritually nurture the children under their care.

Help them all to remain faithful to You, to their purpose, and to the welfare of these children.

I pray also that you would weed out those who do not belong in this place of authority and ministry; those who do not have the gift or compassion and those whose motives are not pure and would cause harm. You have all the power to do what is necessary.

Thank You, Lord. In Jesus' name, amen.