Investment Guide to Investing For Beginners

You need the best investment guide you can find in this messed up economy and tough investment environment. You’ll also need a good guide to investing for beginners to navigate the rough waters ahead. Investing has never been more difficult or confusing. It’s time to learn how to invest, and here’s how to go about it.

First, you’ll need to get a handle on the investment universe including any investments you might already own. This is not that difficult if you have a good investment guide, since there are only 4 basic investment alternatives out there. Second, you’ll need to learn how to invest and put together a sound investment strategy that will work for you in both good times and bad. That’s what a good guide to investing for beginners can do for you.

In other words, learning how to invest successfully over the long term is a two step process. Skip step number one and you won’t understand step two. Without step two you won’t be able to put the investment knowledge you learned in step one into action. Up front I stated that now is a tough time to invest. Now I’ll back that up with my 35 years of investing experience, in terms of the 4 basic investment alternatives available to all investors. Consider this a mini investment guide and a wake up call. Investing for beginners is no picnic today.

Your 4 basic investment alternatives in order of safest to riskiest: safe investments, bonds, stocks, and alternative investments. Safe investments like bank accounts and money funds pay interest, and these days they don’t pay much. The score in late summer 2010: 1-yr. CDs at less than 1% and money funds at less than.05%, or one-twentieth of 1%. This is not normal, and is in fact downright scary. The government can hardly push rates lower to stimulate the economy as they’ve done in past years. We are already looking at zero interest rates in the money markets.

In order to earn higher interest income of 3% or more, average investors are moving money into bonds in the form of bond funds, which are not really safe investments. Simply put, when interest rates go UP, the value of bonds go DOWN. That’s a basic investment fact you can count on – interest rate risk. If you believe that interest rates will fluctuate as they always have and will go up in the not-too-distant future, bonds are not exactly great investment alternatives at this time. With two down and two to go, we move into the riskier choices that involve assuming the risk of ownership in order to earn higher returns.

Any guide to investing for beginners can point out that on average, over the long term, stocks have returned about 10% a year. The problem is that over the past 10 years the average investor would have done better with his or her money in safe investments in the bank. And over the past 3 years, a loss of about 10% a year was common for the stock funds that invest money for millions of average investors. Investor confidence in the economy and the stock market is not high, as billions of dollars are being pulled out of stock funds and moved someplace else (like to bond and money funds) in search of greater safety.

In the past when uncertainty was high and confidence in the stock market was low, smart investors turned to other (alternative) investments like real estate to find opportunity. That’s been a problem this time around, because the financial system seems unable to get the traction needed get things moving again. High unemployment won’t go away and millions of mortgages are “under water”, as people decide to just walk away from their financial obligations. Gold and silver have done well compared to other investment alternatives. If history is any guide to investing, that’s not exactly a cheerful note. People buy and hoard gold in times of fear and desperation.

Out of our 4 basic choices, none looks like a screaming BUY opportunity. Some of the best minds in the investment world are suggesting that investors need to start viewing the investing game differently and lower their expectations. I suggest that you start with the basics and curl up with a good investment guide on a rainy day. Then, you’ll want to follow up and learn how to invest with a guide to investing written for beginners. Once you start to get up to speed you might even begin to enjoy the challenge. And make no mistake about it… investing today is a challenge.

A retired financial planner, James Leitz has an MBA (finance) and 35 years of investing experience. For 20 years he advised individual investors, working directly with them helping them to reach their financial goals.

The Best Investment For Most Folks

The best investment for most folks is mutual funds. Investing money in these investor-friendly funds is the way to go for those who need help with money management and don’t really know how to invest in stocks or bonds on their own. Mutual fund investing is a great way to start investing, and a good way to invest money for your future. Trust me; you don’t need to be a rocket scientist or brain surgeon to invest money here.

If you are afraid to invest money because you feel you don’t really know much about how to invest … relax. You are in the majority. Most people know little about money management and investing. That’s the point of mutual fund investing. These investment packages are designed for the majority of the population who find investing money as comfortable as biting their tongue.

If you want to invest money and watch it grow, invest in a few different types of mutual funds. I’ve written numerous articles on the subject of mutual fund investing, and as a financial planner I recommended mutual funds to hundreds (or thousands) of my clients. Why? Because they are the best investment for most people who want to make more money than they can at the bank, at an acceptable level of risk.

Let’s get real basic and look at the advantages of mutual fund investing. No matter what you read some places, the disadvantages are few and far between if you go with one of the major mutual fund companies (I’ve listed my favorites in previous articles).

Professional money management and diversification are the BIG mutual fund advantage. What do you pay for this? Not that much if you invest money in one of the major no-load fund families like Vanguard, Fidelity or T.Rowe Price.

You can start investing with as little as a few hundred or a few thousand dollars.

Investing money in mutual funds is quite simple. You invest a dollar amount and the professional money management people who run the fund make all of the investment decisions for you. This is how to invest the simple and easy way.

Basically, you can invest in stocks, bonds and safe money market securities by investing money in mutual funds. That’s all the choices you need. You can pick and choose which stock funds, bond funds and money market funds to invest money in.

Or, if you don’t feel comfortable picking the different types of funds you can start investing with funds that invest in a combination of all three of the above investment categories (balanced funds). Now your only investment decision is how conservative or aggressive you want to be.

For years the investment of choice for most investors has been mutual funds. They are, in my opinion, still the best investment for most people.

There’s a big difference between saving and investing money. If you need a cash reserve and total safety keep some money in the bank. If you want to invest money and make it grow, go with mutual fund investing. For most of the people most of the time, mutual funds are the best investment.

A retired financial planner, James Leitz has an MBA (finance) and 35 years of investing experience. For 20 years he advised individual investors, working directly with them helping them to reach their financial goals.

Guide to Right Investments

As an individual we all have targets and set goals in our finances, hence adequate information to the right investment is very important. Considering the fact that good investments help us to actualize our objectives in our education, career, capital projects, family needs, etc, then it’s imperative for us to understand these investments.

Presently, we are faced with the recovery of the economy after experiencing the global economic meltdown for more than two years of economic impasse. In most African countries, especially Nigeria do not seem to get on a good start as the government has limited funds to inject into the economy (Capital market) unlike other developed nations of the world are currently doing. Therefore, there’s a need for us to make the right decision at this trying period. There are different types of Investments available to us; Savings, Insurance, Bonds, Equities and Stocks, FOREX, Real Estates, Importation and Exportation, and what have you. These may sound interesting, but we must look before we make decisions in our chosen investments.

For most people, making the right investment decision can be a tough one. They assume that you need enough money to venture into a lucrative business. It is always a good idea to do some research before you can make a decision as to what you want to invest in. This is better achieved the most when you gather information on your type of investment because you want to make the right investments that would work best for you. It is financially wise for you to know the investment basics so that you will be in a position to have variety of choices. Is this where the use of funds comes in? It is advisable that you use your savings especially if you plan to invest in long term. Moreover, you do not need a lot to get into investing though; you can use your monthly savings and investing consistently. The Stocks and shares option is one of the most popular and profitable business.

Also investing in Insurance policy is another guaranteed way of investing without having fear for drop in market price. Unlike the stock market, Insurance is a sure way of getting your money back with a certain accumulated interest over a stipulated period of time that is if there have not been any occurrences before the maturity date. This however, would be discussed exclusively in my subsequent articles.The mutual fund investment option is yet another form of investing whereby organizations collect money from different individuals and use it to venture into suitable quoted company stock at the right time.This reduces your risk of losing money since you are not directly investing in the stock market. You should look out for all loop holes and engage the services of a financial expert to help you make suitable investment choices.

Before we delve into the various investments stated above properly, there is a need to highlight the basic Principles of Investments that would be our guide to a successful venture. I shall discuss 5 of these proven principles that would guide us through;

The first investment principle we must know is to get the foundation right of any investments plan and all the hiccups we envisaged or encountered would be checked. The problem most people have is that they try to solve their challenges from the surface. It is easy for one to quickly take a pain relieving tablets to stop his toothache problems without knowing the cause. Alright let’s look at our business transactions as an instance. A growing businessman borrows money from his fellow business men to build his business venture. By doing this overtime he became heavily indebted. But in order to be free from his indebtedness, he quickly pays his debts without ever considering the fact that his greatest weakness could be poor financial (money) management. In Nigeria today, an average 60 percent of the population are into entrepreneurship in one business or the other yet most of them have little idea of their venture which accounts for low returns in profit every quarter. This dismay performance could only be attributed to their poor knowledge of the said business, hence the business foundation is lacking. In addressing such situations, understanding the roots of these investments
would place us on the driver’s sit to know where and how to make great returns on our investments

The second principle simply tells us to set values in our investments’ plan and life goals generally as a yard stick to take us to our desired expectations. Values are internal anchors we set ahead of time to guide us in time of decisions making. It is also important to note that in our individual offices and business places, values we set for ourselves would determine the future and success of our careers and business ventures. According to Hamel, G. in “Rethinking the basis for Competition” in (Gibson, R (ed) Re-thinking The Future, Nicholas Brealey Publishing, London pp. 76-92 he says that “the big challenge in creating the future is not predicting the future. Instead, the goal is to try to imagine a future that is plausible – a future that you create based on values.” As matter of fact, we must place great values on our investments and businesses for it to grow beyond limits.

On the third principles of investments, we must draw out our investments plans and strategy. One does not expect a high dividend as a return on your investments from a quoted company if you don’t invest well on that company. In any investment we do, there is need to know the strategy to adopt in getting good returns. Let’s look at the stock market for instance, you would not be foolish to invest in First Bank PLC in the Nigerian Stock Exchange that has reached its’ bullish state when you know most investors are bailing out after a period of planting then smiling to the banks for a good investment. You have to understand the investment first (foundation) then adopt a particular plan or strategy that would suit it for a stipulated period. That is why; Sun Tzu, great author, posits that “the General who wins the battle makes many calculations in his temple before the battle is fought while the General who losses make but few calculations beforehand”. You should know that whatever plans or strategy you make does not really guarantee you success as it may not suit the kind of investments you are into but get the right information to guide you through. Hence, you are advised to invest in financial books, business tips or any investment instruments to put you ahead of your contemporaries. By doing this, you must have drawn an investment philosophy that includes your; aim, period, returns and interest of your investments.

The fourth Principles would centre on our spiritual strength in business. Knowing that sometimes we face all sorts of problems and setbacks in our investments or business activities, we may not have the physical power to overcome them. To be realistic, we need to look up to God by committing our businesses in His hands irrespective of our religion or faith. According to the Book of Proverbs; “If God can see everything in the world of the dead, he can also see in our hearts.” If we commit our ways to God, He would direct our paths. We should always seek Him when faced with any problems. I also suggest you renew your minds with great spiritual and inspirational materials. Great authors like; T.D. Jakes, John Mason, Joyce Meryce, Mathew Ashimolowo, Dale Carnegie, etc have wonderful works that can nourish our soul and make us achievers even in the face of adversity. You would find out that what you consider as problems are not problems, but some stumbling blocks you encountered as challenges to your road to success.

The last Principles of investments which is the fifth, has to do with you as an individual. As a child while growing up, we all aspired to be one great professional in our chosen field. That’s the reason why Education could be adjudged as the highest form of investment. I must say that that most professionals or CEOs these days don’t utilize five percent of their brain. With the latest technologies at our finger tips, we seldom use our brain to work even getting the least calculations. Knowledge they say is power. The more knowledge we acquire, the more resourceful we become in affecting our lives positively. We have to invest in ourselves to improve on our business ideas and skills as change is inevitable. To buttress this point, let’s look at Romans 12:2; “and be not conformed to this world, but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind that you may prove what is good and acceptable and perfect will of God”. Please make it a habit to invest huge part of your income on your brain and mind, as it’s such an investment that you would receive a 100% returns.

Remember, knowledge is part of the key to all successful businesses. Follow these basic principles of investments guide and you would be amazed how your business would grow in greater profits.

Life Long Investing For Your Future

When it comes to investing, many first time investors want to jump right in with both feet. All too often, we see these same people start out investing with dreams of getting rich overnight. Sure this is possible, but it is also rare, as very few of these investors are successful. So as you can see this mindset is usually a very bad idea to start out with.

Now if you truly want to set up investing for the long haul for some later life events, such as funding a college education, purchasing a home, or retirement, you got a couple of options to chose from. However before you look at that, please consider the following.The problem is it seems like many people are not getting to the core reason behind investing.The core reason in investing is to make money with the lest amount of work possible. So for most people this seems like easy money or passive income. Guess what, it isn’t that easy or passive. It takes work and time. So please keep this in mind while considering how you want to invest for life.

So before you start, lets look at how it all works. To begin, please understand that there many different methods of investing. Now keep in mind, you do not need to invest in high-risk stocks and risk all your hard earned money, if you don’t want to. You can just as easily invest your money in ways that are very safe, and which will show a decent return over a long time period.

One such method would be with bonds. Bond certificates are similar to Certificates of Deposit. But instead of being made out by banks, bonds are issued by the Government. Now there are various types of bonds that you can purchase, so depending on the type of bond certificates that you buy, your initial investment could double or more over a specific time period. So if you aren’t quite ready to take the risks involved with mutual funds or stocks, at the very least you could invest in bond certificates that are guaranteed by the Government.

Next we have Mutual funds. Mutual funds are a bit riskier than bond certificates, but for the most part are still relatively safe. Mutual funds Basically exist whenever a group of investors arrange their money collectively to purchase stocks, bonds, or other investments. This can sort of off set the risk of investing by yourself.

Finally we have Stocks. Stocks, of course, are even riskier than Mutual funds. However stocks are a different vehicle for long term investments that allow for risk. Basically shares of stocks are shares of ownership in the company you are investing in. So when the company does well financially, the value of your stock climbs. On the other hand, if a company is doing badly, your stock value drops. So when purchasing stocks be sure you pick out stocks that are well proved.

So what to do to begin investing. First off realize that investing requires more than just jumping on the phone and calling a broker and telling them that you want to buy stocks or bonds right now. So before you invest a single penny, really think of what you hope to achieve with your investment.

Seriously before you jump right in, it is always best to ask some questions like the following:

How can I find out more about investing and how it all works?

What are my goals for investing?

What do I hope to achieve with my investments?

Funding a college education?

Purchasing a home?

Retiring?

Knowing what your goal is, will help you make smarter investment decisions along the way. It takes a certain amount of research and knowledge about the market if you hope to invest successfully. Don’t short yourself. Go ahead and set up the investment plan you want and feel will fit in with your lifestyle. Then you should go and see a financial planner before making any investments. This way your financial planner can help you determine what type of investing you must do to reach the financial goals that you have set. Investing in anything requires some degree of skill. It is important to remember that few investments are a sure thing. As there is always the risk of losing your money! The crucial point is to do your research before investing your money for long term gain.

The best investment of them all. The best investment that you will make will be investing in your own business. Also the best type of business even in this recession is an online business. Now does this mean you shouldn’t invest? No, not at all. See the point is a lot of people are missing the options available in investing in your own business as opposed to the more traditional forms of investing. So if you finally and truly want to take control of your life and make an impact then consider starting you Internet Marketing Business. However keep in mind that just like traditional investments you still need to do your research and make sure you can make it work.

The reasons for this are many, here are just a few.

* You will usually have a low or no cost to getting started.

* This can be used to help leverage your income

* In most cases you have control over how your money is spent.

* You get to choose the direction the company is going.

* You can even change markets if you wish to.

* You can even give yourself a raise every year if you wish.

* You can also add to you product line as well.

So in addition to considering “more traditional forms of investing, you may find online businesses an investment beyond your wildest dreams.

So would you like to start investing in the best life long investment? Then let me ask you a question.

Are you truly interested in making money…

Then why not discover the secrets of building your own autopilot business that can earn you $1,000s a month in a matter of weeks.

Kill your day job. Start living the life you want. Enjoy your freedom. Stop dreaming and take action now.

Investment Portfolio

Investment portfolio could be defined as a pool of different investments by which an investor bets to make profit while aiming to preserve his invested amount at the same time. The diversity of the investments in an investing portfolio depends upon the investors estimates of both risks and returns. They can either invest in stocks having low risk with low reward or in stocks having high risk with high reward. The decision of investment as well as the investment pattern of an investor depends upon his basic nature as well the amount of capital he wants to invest. There are mainly three types of investment. These are patient, aggressive and conservative investment portfolio. The investor having patient portfolio mostly invests in companies that give him/her regular returns no matter what the market conditions are. The investors with such investment portfolio hold their investment for a longer period. The investors with aggressive portfolios invest in risky stocks that could earn him high profit and their investments are mainly in rapidly growing companies. The main feature of their investment is it keeps on changing and experiences big turnovers over time. The conservative investment can be seen of the investors who always invest with an eye on the yield. They also take into account growth of the company as well as dividends offered. Based on this they take their investment decision.

For your investment portfolio working the best, you need to ably manage it. Below mentioned are some of the points that would help you to manage your investment portfolio better:

o You should never keep worrying about the performance of your every investment. There would be some that may be giving you bad returns at that point of time, but you have to forget about it and focus on the performance of your investment portfolio as a whole.
o You should have patience no matter how worse the situation turns and should always keep your focus on the eventual gains.
o You should always stick to your strategy while taking minimum risk and should not deviate from your investment plan hearing any rumour.
o Your stock investment should be diversified so that if you face loss in one or two profile it could be compensated. For example you can invest in small stocks, real estates investment trusts and in foreign stocks, but the investment should not be big.
o You should always adopt value-oriented and diversified approach and should not invest money in stocks that you may need immediately.
o You should not rebalance your portfolio often, give it some stability and don’t take the things for granted taking its history into account.
o You should not fill your portfolio with fashionable stocks as it will not gain you much profit.

For successful investment portfolio, you need to have sound investment strategy. There are mainly two types of strategies that are adopted by the people. One is passive portfolio strategy and the other is active portfolio strategy. In passive portfolio investment strategy the investor has minimum expectations from his investments and depends upon diversification on investment to match market index, while in active investment portfolio strategy the investor uses available information and forecasting techniques to seek a better performance. With the technological advancement even the modes of managing your investment portfolio is changing. Now technological help in the form of software is available in the market that helps you to manage your investment portfolio efficiently. But whether it’s taking technological help or formulating strategies manually, it’s your instinct as well as your market reading capability matters the most. So you should always back your investment portfolio with a sound investing strategy.