There are plenty of gimmicky little phrases in English that essentially tell us the same thing: stay the course. “Keep calm and carry on”, said the English wartime propaganda poster. “If you’re going through hell, keep going”, is something Winston Churchill said to chivvy up the populace during the same war. “The greatest glory in living lies not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall,” was Nelson Mandela’s celebrated view on perseverance.
In military strategy, the remaining calm under fire is regarded as essential to making effective decisions, and in the fraught state of South Africa’s political economy, this has seldom been a more valuable truth for investors and their asset managers.
It’s critical for sober people to step away from the unhelpful noise around the economy and to keep focused. If you have a pension with your employer, or privately, or a life policy, then you are an investor. You’re invested in the JSE, the bond market and probably overseas as well and, if your investments are soundly and actively managed, then keeping calm and carrying on is most likely your best option.