Hey life lovers! I know I've been gone for a while. Yagoli was on a short hiatus so that we could revamp and hit the ground running as we start to wrap up 2017. In addition to that I got married Aug 4th to the girl I should have been dating back in high school.
But that's more than enough about me, lets talk about money. It's been a while since we talked about finance and with the fiscal year nearly over I figured now is as good a time as any. So with that said it’s time for some financial fitness training life lovers.
Now a lot of people know what stocks are but, for those that don’t let's start from the very beginning. A stock, as defined by financial experts, is a type of security that signifies ownership in a corporation and represents a claim on part of the corporation's assets and earnings. In other words, when you buy stock you buy into a company’s potential success. When Microsoft first came out, it’s stock prices were low, just like any other fledgling company. Today, however, one share from Microsoft costs $69. This is were a lot of people lose interest. “So 100 shares is only worth $690?” Yes and no. First you have to understand that the stock exchange is a trade market. Just like how we used to trade baseball cards or pogs, people trade shares on the market to get a better value. Second, each share represents potential for gain. If the value of a stock goes up by 10% that means each share gains value and your overall investment increases. Lastly, the more a company grows and expands, the more shares that company is able to sell. If you bought 100 shares of Microsoft 25 years ago, you would have over 28,000 shares today due to the stock splits which would be worth roughly $750,000. That’s what’s known as the long game, and many everyday people don’t think that the investment of a few hundred dollars is worth risking in the market. That’s what we’re going to get into today.
To start things off properly I’d like to tell you how I got into investing. A Facebook ad. While I was scrolling my wall commenting on friends pages I saw an ad for an app called Acorn. It seemed like an easy way to try my hand at it so I signed up.
Acorns looks at every purchase you make and rounds it up to the nearest dollar and then deposits the run off into an investment portfolio. So it you spend $6.45 at the store, Acorns takes the $0.55 difference and sets it to the side. Then when enough run off accumulates, Acorns uses it to purchase stock. Without even realizing it I had saved $67.23 into my portfolio and gained an additional $4.58 in gains over the course of a month. I didn’t even miss the money and I had become five bucks richer. The only problem was that I had no control over the investments. The money I put in the app went into a generalized portfolio to by small percentages of shares from multiple companies. On the other hand, you can even earn what's called "found money" when you shop at places like Wal-Mart, Apple, Blue Apron and more. Don't take my word for it though, here's $5 to try it for yourself. After seeing how easy it was to get started with Acorn I decided to do a little research which eventually lead me to another app called Stash.
Stash is my favorite investment app so far. I schedule by weekly deposits of $5 and then delegate which type of portfolio the money goes to. I split my Stash investments between a couple conservative portfolios and a couple more aggressive ones. I actually can see which companies each one is connected to and just like Acorns, the money goes toward a percentage of a share. If Stash sounds appealing to you click here and get $5 free to help get you started.
If only owning a piece of a share doesn’t appeal to you though there is an alternative. Penny stocks. Now penny stocks get mixed reviews online so I’m just going to give the facts as I know them. The SEC defines pony stocks as any shares that are traded below $5. Most of the time these shares don’t go on the major market exchanges. Pennystocks.org is a good place to get started and get connected with stock brokers to help manage your portfolio.
One thing to remember is that there is no such thing as investment without risk. Any one that says otherwise is lying. There are plenty of low risk investment opportunities for those who can be patient. Vice versa, there are investments that can yield huge gains but also come with an increased potential for loss. Start off small and pay attention to the trends and above all think before you act. Buying and selling should never be done hastily and you should always be especially weary of abandoning ship altogether without thinking it through first. If a company is running into the ground that’s a good time to sell off all your shares, but if a stock price takes a dip out of the blue you should find out more information before giving up.
Best way to get your start in investing in stocks is to use the money you won’t miss. Take a few dollars from your eating out budget and get started with one of these easy start-ups listed above. Be patient and avoid selling any stocks for at least the first 6 months. If you know of any other apps or sites that work better for first time investors please leave in the comments and for more financial fitness tips be sure to subscribe to Yagoli.com