Sep 23, 2009 2:16 AM by Jeannette Hynes

Dow inching close to 10,000. Now what?

One year ago, the Dow Jones Industrial Average closed at 11,015.69, down 372 points.  Monday, the Dow closed at 9,829.87, up 51 points. So where does that leave the economy?  Still up in the air, but on the mend.

"The consumer is still nervous.  We can see consumers sales are down, and consumers aren't running out and spending wildly," says Craig Carnick, Certified Financial Planner in Colorado Springs. "All the mortgage problems are not over.  There are a lot of theses adjustable rate mortgages that'll reset in 2010 and even 2011."

His advice, no matter the economy: have a long-term financial plan, and stick to it.

Carnick says, if you're a long way from retirement, you can keep your money in stocks and give that investment some time to work for you.  If you're closer to retirement, take a more conservative approach - get out of stocks and into investments like money markets and CDs.

"People who were emotional when the market dropped and sold out made a mistake.  They sold out at the low point.  Now people are waiting to get back in and trying to make a killing, and that's the wrong approach," says Carnick.

Also, Carnick warns of investment scams.  He says his office has received several calls, especially now, from people who were pressured into investing into something that was "guaranteed" or a "sure thing."  He reminds people investing is hard work, so know who you're dealing with, and where your money is going.


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