Driving along the back roads in New England can be an adventure. There are twists and turns and frost heaves that rise up in the late winter / early spring and then degenerate into potholes in the summer and fall. These can make our highways and byways hazardous to a vehicle’s undercarriage. How fast we travel depends on how firm a grip we have on the wheel and whether we have dental insurance to deal with loose fillings afterwards.
By contrast, I’m always amazed when I travel to other parts of the country: how straight and level and smooth even the smaller roads tend to be. There’s a reason why the speed limits out west tend to be higher.
Driving can a lot like investing. Some roads are more difficult to negotiate. They’re bumpy, they have steep drop-offs, they may not have guard rails. When we find ourselves travelling along one of these, we need to slow down and be more cautious. Other routes are well-travelled superhighways. They’re designed for speed and efficiency. Their biggest road hazard is boredom.
How fast we drive is like how much risk we take when we’re investing. It depends on what tools we have, what the environment is like, how much time we have get to our destination, and our own constitution. Some folks like to drive fast, just for the exhilaration.
But if the road turns out to be rougher than expected, watch out!
Douglas R. Tengdin, CFA
Charter Trust Company
“The Best Trust Company in New England”