Looking to start investing? Read this advice from the expert first!
If you want to protect your wealth, investing is a wise idea. Unfortunately, investing can be intimidating, especially if you’re new to it. Further, even for experienced hands, some investing concepts are complex and challenging to understand. Fortunately, Darrin Eakins of Wilmington, NC, will share some must-know investing insights for those new to investing.
“The first thing to understand with investing is that knowledge really is power, or perhaps more to the point, profits,” he explains. “It’s smart to study investing and do so every day, even if you only spend 15 minutes studying; it can make a huge difference.”
Studying investing doesn’t mean having to complete a finance degree at a university or online. Although, if you want to take formal classes, consider your local community college. Many colleges offer affordable investing classes that working professionals can complete in their spare time.
You can also find plenty of great investing books on Amazon. Then you can work through the books one chapter at a time. Another option is to subscribe to a finance/business-focused newspaper, like the Wall Street Journal or Financial Times. Staying apprised of industries and government policies can go a long way too.
So what might you learn while studying investing? Some of the basics can go a long way.
“The first concept newer investors should understand is probably diversification,” Darrin Eakins argues. “If you diversify your portfolio, you can reduce risks, which is very important when safeguarding your wealth.”
Diversification can mean many things. For example, you might hold stock in Apple, Microsoft, and Amazon instead of just Apple. This way, if one company stumbles, your wealth is still protected. You can also diversify by industry, investing in, say, Apple, Toyota, and Johnson & Johnson.
“Investing in multiple industries is often wise,” Darrin Eakins explains, “however, with newer investors, I recommend sticking to industries you know. If you follow technology closely and work in retail, investments in retail and technology offer a good start. Just make sure you don’t let any allegiances say to your employer or favorite tech brand color your investment decisions.”
Investing in industries you’re familiar with may make it easier to understand trends, data, consumers/customers, and more. Macrotrends, in particular, can be very important. If you understand the general trends in an industry, you can look for winning companies that will profit from those trends.
“Definitely, keep an eye on macro trends. If a recession lands, most stocks and other assets will lose value,” he notes. “Also, pay close attention to government decisions, say raising or lowering interest rates, as they can have a big impact on society as a whole.”
Setting Up Your Investment Portfolio
Once you have some knowledge under your belt, it’s time to start building your portfolio. So how do you get started? By finding a stockbroker that offers affordable fees and value-added services.
“One thing investors sometimes fail to consider is how quickly fees add up,” Darrin Eakins says. “Some brokers charge $30 bucks or whatever a trade. Those fees can add up, so consider lower-cost brokers, especially at the start of your investing efforts.”