Should investors panic over stock market?

January 22, 2008 11:53:45 AM PST
There has been a wild ride on Wall Street after the Federal Reserve boldly cut interest rates by three-quarters of a point. A lot of us are wondering, how will all this financial turmoil affect us?

It is hard to know whether to panic, especially with all of the news coverage this is getting, but experts are saying we need to sit wait and watch awhile -- because this instability is probably far from over.

Traders who work the stock market knew this day was going to be a little bit better when the fed cut the interest rate this morning before the market even opened. The rate cut saved the Dow from the free fall it was headed for. But what does the cut mean beyond the walls of the trading floor?

At Boulette's Larder in San Francisco's Ferry building -- the owners aren't sure what to expect and are still worried about a possible recession. With the restaurant selling such specialty items as Welsh sea salt, the owners depend on their customers having disposable income.

"I'm concerned it will change our customer's behaviors. It makes it a little bit harder to plan the future especially when it comes to business growth and opportunity, so there a little bit of anxiousness around that," said Lori Regis, co-owner.

Experts say business owners like her don't need to watch what the fed does so much -- but should keep an eye on President Bush and his proposed economic stimulus plan.

"That I think will bode well for restaurants and businesses and the like as it will put more money in their pocket and be able to sustain their habits of spending through this downturn," said Terry Connelly, J.D., Golden Gate University Business School Dean.

The fed's rate cut could be good news for those of you with a mortgage. Golden Gate University Business School Dean Terry Connolly says this could stimulate the troubled housing market over time.

"It may be easier for people to refinance this spring if rates keep coming down, sooner or later what the fed does has an effect on mortgage rates," said Terry Connelly.

And for those of you who are wondering whether you should buy some stocks right now -- Connolly says wait a while. You can probably get some discounts now -- but prices will be even better when we hit the bottom -- which probably hasn't happened yet.