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Money panel

Betty L. Baise: Part-time substitute teacher, 70, Tampa

By Times staff writer
© St. Petersburg Times
published March 16, 2003

Q. How did you get started investing?

I've been messing with it for quite some time. I started in the 1990s. I just went down, talked to a broker and told him I wanted to invest some money. I never did well with him.

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Q. What has been your best investment so far?

A variable annuity. I bought it in the summer of 1999. I did well with it for a while.

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Q. What has been your worst investment so far?

I had some Janus funds in a Jackson National variable annuity. I didn't get out in time to stop from losing money. Then when things are bad, there's nothing to choose from.

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Q. What have you learned about investing?

I've learned, at my age, to be very careful. I'm not a well-to-do person. I don't want to chase hot rainbows -- although there are not any right now anyway.

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Q. How do you describe your approach to investing?

Conservative and cautious and trying to preserve what I do have but not run out of money.

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Q. How are you invested now?

I have a variable annuity that I'm hanging on to waiting for the penalty to go down. Forty percent (of my portfolio) is in variable annuity, one-third in a CD and one-third in a money market.

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Q. Is this a good time to invest?

No, I'm afraid. I'm not going to do anything to invest in any market until I see it has some stability to it. Right now, I'm not making much.

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Q. Do you have a goal for your investments?

I want to do a little traveling, but I don't want to be pressed to have to do much work if I don't want to. And I don't want to run out of money. I want to have a portion of my money growing.

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Q. Where do you get your investment tips?

Now, it's from Humana Market Point.

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