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I really HATE buying a stock one day and then selling it a few days later. It really stinks. No kidding.
On September 11, 2008, just 4 days ago (!) I purchased 210 shares of Robbins & Myers (RBN) at a cost basis of $38.21/share. Today, I sold my 210 shares at $35.0832. That represented a loss of $(3.13)/share or (8.2)% since purchase.
As you probably know (!) it was a pretty awful day in the market. The Dow closed down (503.99) to 10,917.51, and oil dropped $(5.47) to $95.71/barrel.
With the stock declining tied to something fundamental like the price of oil, I sold my shares and am downgrading my "buy":
ROBBINS AND MYERS (RBN) IS RATED A SELL
I don't like selling my own shares and leaving the rating at a "buy" either. Just doesn't seem right. But I do this if there is nothing what I would call "fundamentally" wrong with the stock. In this case, the stock is trading as an oil-related holding (again like Graham (GHM)), and with the price of oil continuing to break down, there is little reason for me to even leave RBN at a 'hold'. Anyhow, that's my rationale. Above all, remember that I am an amateur!
Since I was down at 5 positions, and this puts me at 4, paradoxically this sale actually gives me a "buy signal" since I was at my 'minimum' holding level of 5 positions.
I shall wait for something positive in the market and start scanning the lists of top % gainers when that happens. I am not in a hurry.
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Yours in investing,