If you’re a beginning investor, you, no doubt, have many questions about the way the stock market operates. There is much information available on the web today, but finding the right information can be difficult. However, you are in luck, because this article will give you the information that you need, to better understand the stock market and its intricacies.
Keep in mind that there is a variety of stocks available. Compared to bonds, commodities, real estate and certificates of deposit, stocks might seem like a singular venture, but within the stock world there are many options. Common divisions within the stock market include specific sectors, growth patterns and sizes of companies. Stock investors routinely discuss things like small and large caps and growth versus value stocks. It is good to learn the terminology.
Remember that stock prices are reflections of earnings. In the short term immediate future, market behavior will flucutuate depending on news and rumor and the emotional responses to those, ranging from enthusiasm to panic. In the longer term picture however, company earnings over time wind up determining whether a stock price rises or falls.
Make a habit of buying good stocks and holding on to them. Rapid trading can rack up costs, fees and taxes very quickly. Traders who engage in this kind of behavior also tend to try to time fluctuations in market pricing to capitalize on short-term gains. In addition to being risky, this means investing in companies they have not researched, which you probably do not have the time to do every day.
Try and earn at least 10% a year since you can get close to that with an exchange traded fund. To estimate what return you’ll receive, research the expected earnings growth rate then add it to the dividend yield. Stocks yielding 4% and which have a 10% earnings growth rate may produce a return of 14%.
When considering company stocks to invest in, consider any past negative surprises. Similar to the idea that one pest is typically indicative of more pests in your home, one blemish on the company record typically indicates more in the future. Choose businesses with the best reputations to avoid losing money on your stocks.
It is important to remember when investing that cash is always an option. If you do not like the current state of the market, or are unsure of what to invest in, there is nothing wrong with holding cash. You can put the cash into a savings account, certificate of deposit, or purchase short term treasuries. Do not pressure yourself into investing in the stock market if you do not believe the timing is right.
Do not turn down free money from your employer by ignoring the availability of matching contributions for your 401k investments. You must invest the amount needed to get the entire company match. Often, this match amounts to 50 cents for each dollar you invest up to a specified cap. A 6% investment on your part nets you 3% from the company. Few alternative investments will ever reach a 50% rate of return. Whether you decide to invest beyond the level of the matching contribution is a separate decision, but don’t forgo an important component of your compensation by not taking advantage of free money when it is available.
Now that you’ve finished this article, you should have a better understanding of the way the stock market works and how you can use it to your financial advantage. Take heed of this practical advice, and you’ll be on your way to making wise investment decisions that will prove to be profitable.