Your Questions About Investing Tips

Linda asks…

Can you provide me with tips how to invest with stock exchange individually?

I want to buy shares or invest with stock exchange,and I dont know where to start. Can you help?

John answers:

First learn how to trade. There are a number of corps that have courses on how to trade the stock market. Before you do take the lessons, I’d recommend that you read a few books on the basics of trading, so that when you take the courses, it will all gel together and make sense to you.

After you learn, then you can paper trade for at least a month before you go on to live trading with real money. The papertrading will help you get a feel for the market without losing or using any real money.

Carol asks…

What are the pros and cons to investing?

What are some tips you guys can give me. Wanting to invest in stock, really want to learn more about investing, what are some good sites?

John answers:

Think of it like educated gambling. You can make a lot of money, but you can also lose quite a bit. Educate yourself and the odds of losing money decrease, but it’s never a sure thing. Just read as much information as you can about the companies you want to invest in.

Http://onlinestocktraders.org/

Robert asks…

I am hoping to buy shares on the Irish Stockexchange, what do people think about investing in these companies?

ELAN
DIAGEO
DRAGON OIL
FYFFES
IRISH CONTINENTAL GROUP
KERRY GROUP
GRAFTON GROUP

Any other ideas will be useful. First time investing so any suggestions, tips and ideas would be great!!!

John answers:

I think Diageo is smart. Are you limited to Irish exchange companies?

Maria asks…

How can I become an expert in investing & stock market?

Are there any books that will teach me everything, and also give me tips to make sure I never make bad mistakes in stock market investing? Perhaps there are forums, newsletters, online mentors, etc that have helped better your knowledge of investing. Please only helpful answers.

John answers:

Read. Start with Investing for Dummies and Random Walk Down Wall Street. Look at your local book store. Expect it to take years. The people who are on the other side of the trades are professionals who have spent years learning their trade.

Steven asks…

20-something wanting to start investing in stocks? Any suggestions?

I’m young and still in college, but I’m wanting to test the waters so to speak so that I can begin learning how to invest now. Any suggestions on ways to start? I.E. Good companies to work with, a good (reasonable) amount to start investing with, and any other tips you might have. Thanks in advance!

John answers:

Standard investment advice is that you should invest in a diversified mix of stocks, bonds, and money market funds. You want to buy a diversified portfolio of stocks as individual stocks are too risky. Most folks
have a dificult time buying a properly balanced portfoilio of stocks on their own. They will misbalance their portfolio by buying all small stocks or all growth stocks, or some other misbalanced assortment of stocks. Unless you know what you are doing, it is best to buy mutual funds. I like Vanguard.com, other people like Fidelity, TIAA-CREF, and DFA. Buy no-load, low cost funds. If you are like most people you will invest part of your money aggressively in stock funds, and part conservatively in money market funds and bond funds. Vanguard has an on-line questionnaire which will give you an idea of how to do “Asset Allocation,” determining how much to put in each type of fund.

Once you start working, if your company offers a 401K plan at work, try to invest the most you can. The money grows tax free, and some companies will match your contribution. Investing in a mutual fund IRA is also a good idea.

I like index funds. Because of their broad diversification, you are less likely to have a dramatic drop in value. They also have the lowest expenses. For stock funds, I would suggest putting ~70-80% of your money in the Vanguard Total Stock Market Index Fund. And ~20-30% in a foreign stock index fund. However, there are many different opinions out there on what the best mutual funds are. Read the links below and form your own opinion.

If you have high-interest debt, like credit cards, it is best to pay this off first before trying most of the investment ideas above. You should also have 3-6 months of salary saved up as an emergency fund in a bank or money market fund before trying more risky investments.

Believing advice you get on Yahoo answers can be risky, so read these websites for further information. If you find it too confusing, contact a professional financial advisor. They will charge you significant commissions, however.

Sources:

http://www.vanguard.com/VGApp/hnw/planningeducation
http://www.fool.com/school.htm
http://sec.gov/investor/pubs/assetallocation.htm
http://www.diehards.org/readsites.htm
http://finance.yahoo.com/education/begin_investing
http://finance.yahoo.com/funds/basics

Asset Allocation Calculators
(Determining how much to put in stocks and how much into bonds and money markets is a personal decision depending on your financial status. These Asset Allocation questionaires give you a rough idea how to do this. I like Vanguard best, but try some of the other sites as well.)
https://personal.vanguard.com/VGApp/hnw/FundsInvQuestionnaire?cbdInitTransUrl=https%3A//flagship.vanguard.com/VGApp/hnw/planningeducation/education
https://ais2.tiaa-cref.org/cgi-bin/WebObjects.exe/DTAssetAlcEval
http://www.ifa.com/SurveyNET/index.aspx

Web forum: http://www.diehards.org/
(Many investment web forums are overrun by scam artists. This one seems the most legitimate site.)

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