Everyday my firm sees new cases of people having lost too much money in the stock market. While those who were speculating in the market deserve to suffer the ups and downs of the market, many are just people who believed what the industry had told them. We have been told that to not invest you money in stocks is a waste of your money, because the value of you cash will go down with inflation. We have been told that over the long haul, the stock market averages better than other forms of investment. We have been told to just put in the money and just let it sit and grow for 20 years or more, so that it will be there for retirement. I agree that retirement planning is important, but the brokerage houses don’t just invest money and let it sit. They not only buy and sell furiously every day, they now how computers systems programmed to buy and sell vast quantities in the blink of an eye. All of this is to the detriment of the average investor. The markets don’t create wealth, they only create wealthy people by taking your money and rewarding those who control or game the system.
Proper handling of your stock account requires investments that are suitable for YOUR needs, If your investments have lost too much as you were about to retire, that is not suitable investing, and you should call a lawyer.