This has been a hard lesson to learn, but as an investor with a long time-horizon I'm beginning to love the bear.

If you're like most investors, you cheer for the bull. This makes sense if you need to cash out your stock investments in the next 3-5 years. Table: Windows of OpportunityBut otherwise, you've got it all wrong—you need to start pulling for the bear.

Why? Because during the investing phase of your life, you're going to be a net buyer of stocks for many years to come. You want your monthly investing dollars to stretch as far as possible, acquiring as many stock and stock fund shares as you possibly can. And that happens when prices are down. ...

You like it when you can get bargains on clothes, electronics, furnishings, cars, vacations, and houses. Nobody cheers when those things cost more. Similarly, you should also like it when you can get bargains on stocks.

So, learn to love the bear! The truly long-term investor realizes we need more of them. There have been only ten in the past 40 years. ...

In fact, that's what we may be experiencing right now, but it's too soon to say for sure. At its lowest point to date, the drop has been only 9.4% from the July high. The selloff may already be over and the bull market about ready to resume (drat), or perhaps the market will yet fall -10% to -19% into that mini-bear territory and present a fine window of opportunity for buyers (yes!).

If it's the latter, don't fret and moan along with your friends (who thus reveal their short-term way of thinking despite protestations to the contrary). Enjoy the fact that bargains will continue to be available in the coming months. Eventually you'll be the richer for it!

I was buying into the latest correction and have made more than 6% gains on those purchases just over the past few weeks.

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