401K Investing Primer:
If you want to “play” around a little bit, you can select asset classes that you think might perform better over a set time frame:
Within the major asset classes, the subclasses of assets sometimes don’t behave differently. For example, the stock market did well in 2020-2021, so ANY “equity” asset class did well. Regardless of which sub-class within the “Equity” asset class, just choosing any “equity” was fine.
Commodities have done poorly over a very long time, but that asset class does well with inflation, or is supposed to.
Fixed Income do well when there is deflation, and interest rates are falling (or are supposed to). Fixed income assets are also supposed to be fairly stable (i.e. not as volatile in price) since they represent debt that needs to be repaid, backed by collateral / creditworthiness.
Real Estate is its own thing and highly dependent on location, sentiment of people, population & demographic cycles, etc…
There are also “Thematic” asset classes such as:
Going deeper than this will require research you will have to do and experience. It is an entire game people fiercely compete in. If you’re interested, consult with a financial advisor or start researching these topics to learn. Remember, it’s a blood sport. The “Market” doesn’t care how long you’ve been doing it, what your positions are, or what your hopes, dreams, and goals are. If you prefer not to play this game, Jack Bogle built a great company called Vanguard that’s spawned a lot of similar companies & funds that have “index funds” and “target date funds” for you. Please refer to the first 3 items in the post. Remember, “investing” is easy: https://shared401k.com/blog/how-to-invest/