A recommendation to “hold” means that investors should neither buy nor sell the security. Companies that are given a “hold” rating often perform in line with the market or at a similar rate to other companies in their industry. This is a neutral recommendation, implying that investors who already own long positions shouldn’t sell, but newcomers shouldn’t acquire. 

An investor has two choices if she decides to hold on to a stock. If an investor currently has stock in her portfolio, she should not sell until she has a better idea of the stock’s short-, medium-, and long-term prospects. Until the company’s long-term prospects become clearer, an investor who does not yet own any equity should hold off on making a purchase.

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