Wall Street’s ‘Black Monday’: should you worry about your 401K?

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NEW YORK - Feel the ground shaking?  It's not an earthquake, as far as we know, but it's a roller-coaster called Wall Street.   Monday morning the Dow Jones plunged 1,000 in just 10 minutes, but then it bounced back just enough to make everybody sick.   So, what's going on?

"The stock market is very volatile, and that has been the case for the past six to eight months," explained William C. Heath, CPF, chairman and CEO of Barrington Financial Advisors, Inc.  "When China devalued its currency, that was probably the first step."

And when investors and financial advisers start talking about volatility… hold on to your 401K, cowboy, because it's gonna hurt.   But, aside from being scared,  what to do?

"People that have retirement programs, 401Ks, IRAs, anything in tax deferred accounts… if they haven't done anything through this point in time, my recommendation would be to do nothing," Heath said. "The market has already gone down. If you'd sold now you'd just be converting a paper loss to a real loss.  So, my recommendation would be just sit; especially if you have a long investment horizon."

They say this is not 2008 and the bumpy ride is gonna slow down at some point.  When?  That's not clear yet.  But one thing is for sure, we've had enough already.