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One of the great "secrets" of successful people is discipline and it doesn't make any difference whether it is manufacturing, processing, servicing or investing in the stock market.
Before you can have that discipline you must have a successful plan and stick with it. If the method you use does not work or results in smaller profits it should be abandoned and a better one found. For the average investor the plans laid out by Wall Street do not work and over the long run you will lose money. Actually you will make a very small percentage, but the return will be mitigated due to ongoing inflation. The great majority of investors believe that an annual return of 10% or more is to be expected when actually it is much less and there will be periods when there will be almost no return at all.
Returns can be increased greatly if the investor will learn not to follow the 3 great lies of Maul Street. They are Buy and Hold, Dollar Cost Average and Do Research. These lies have been told so often that they have become conventional wisdom.
During 1998 and 1999 the price appreciation was fantastic. If you check back in history you will find this was an aberration. Folks still think that was "normal". The actual norm is about 16 to 18 year periods of bull markets followed by bear markets with many 4 year cycles of ups and downs with that 16-year time frame.
Think back to 2000, 2001 and 2003. During that time did your broker ever call to tell you to sell? About 98% of brokerage company recommendations were to Buy. Many folks lost 50% to 80% of their savings. That alone should have turned on the light bulb in your head that either these guys are stupid or they are lying to you.
There is a "secret" to investing and it is one word - Sell. You must have to discipline to remove yourself from losing positions. During the worst part of that 3 years we saw many stocks drop 50 to 90% and other companies go out of business. It you have placed a limit to the amount of loss you would take you would have a lot more money today. Why do you want to wait for your stocks to drop 30, 40, 50% or more when you could have placed an Open Stop Loss Order with your broker to sell you out if your stock dropped below a certain price? Maybe 10%, hopefully not 20%, but even that is better than a huge loss.
In many cases brokers try to talk you out of selling, but your discipline will require you to be firm. You must protect your money; insist on protection of your investments.
Al Thomas' best selling book, "If It Doesn't Go Up, Don't Buy It!" has helped thousands of people make money and keep their profits with his simple 2-step method. Read the first chapter and receive his market letter at http://www.mutualfundmagic.com and discover why he's the man that Wall Street does not want you to know. Copyright 2005
Series 7 Exam
What is the Series 7 Exam? If you are looking to become a licensed Stockbroker, you need to know about the Series 7. The Series 7 is a 250 question exam that when passed, licenses you to act as a Registered Representative. Persons who receive this license are allowed to sell most securities. These securities would include: Stock, Bonds, Options, Mutual Funds and Annuities. The license itself is active while you are practicing it. Practicing with a Series 7 means that you are either employed or affiliated with a member firm. If you leave the business, your license will still remain active for 2 years after your last day with the firm. If you do not re-enter the business within 2 years, your license will expire. You would then have to re-take the exam again. The Series 7 exam itself is comprised of many topics although not equally divided. Approximately 50 questions will be on Municipal Bonds alone. Other major topics include Options, Industry Rules and Customer Account handling. The SERIES 7 is a multiple choice test graded on 250 questions administered on computer by an NASD testing vendor (Prometric Technology Center). 70% is needed to pass the SERIES 7 Exam. You will be given 6 hours to complete the exam in two 3 hour parts. Each question is worth .4 of a point. 175 questions correct will equal a passing grade. The score is not curved or rounded up so yes, if you get 174 questions right, you will get a 69.6% and you will fail. Each part also includes 5 experimental questions, which do not count on your total score. You will not know which ones are the experimental questions. Each exam is different, meaning if you take your test next to someone else, your test will not be the same. The percentages will be the same but the questions that each individual is tested on will be random. This applies to all Licensing exams but the difference between tests is less with smaller content exams like the Series 63. You will be given a calculator to use at the center. Applicants are not permitted to bring their own. Scrap paper will be given to you as well for you to use during the test. Once the test officially starts you can write down anything you want (Formulas, Rules etc.). The computer also offers the student the ability to change their answers at the end of the first or second part of the test. Meaning, if you wish to change an answer to a question in the first half, you will have to wait until the end of the first half to do it. Once the second half starts, you will be unable to view your first half. Basically, you are taking 2 different 125 question exams. Even if you are unsure what the correct answer to a question is, you must enter something before the next question is shown. Don't Cheat: Today, the testing centers require fingerprint verification when you take your test. A student was caught a few years ago on camera cheating in the testing room. This person had a tiny video camera device on his tie and a listening transmitter in his ear. He was actually filming his screen while someone else at another location was feeding him the answers. I didn't believe this one at first but several people told it to me. Pretty amazing. Needless to say, he was nabbed and busted. Just study and you will pass....and maybe learn something too! Good Luck!
Congress recently passed another new law that is supposed to outlaw financial crime. Corporate officers will be sent to jail for "cooking the books" as it is called. Among other things it is taking the stockholders money and paying themselves huge bonuses for nonperformance. These guys are even worse than mutual fund managers who do the same thing ? get paid big salaries yet continue to lose your money.
Long Term Investing
In his wonderful book, 'Multiple Streams of Income', best selling author Robert Allen advises Investors to divide their Stock Market investment and trading capital into three portions -50% invested long term (forever) in an Index Fund, 30% invested in Accelerated Stock strategies and 20% in options or high risk investment strategies.
Starbucks Stock is Up
Starbucks earnings are up again and so is their stock slightly. It appears they are exporting America's weakness to caffeine and sugar around the world. This seems to serve the company's profits well and nations like China have quite an emerging population to sell to. Think of the exporting of tobacco and the riches the orient has given. Perhaps this is the answer to our advancing trade deficit. Should you have Starbucks in your portfolio?
Never Lose Money
Never lose money in the stock market again. Yeah, I know. Don't buy any stock, but that is not what I meant. There is a clear and easy way to protect your capital ? what you have now and what you might decide to buy in the future. And don't count on your broker to tell you this.
When you stand on the ocean shore and watch the waves breaking you might become aware that the tide is coming in or going out. It is a slow process to watch the water retreat and when it finally gets to its lowest point it is almost impossible to tell if it has stopped or will retreat further. Plenty of wave action, but going nowhere.
Ever jumped out of an airplane? It's OK if you have on a parachute. Pretty dumb if you don't.
Some Good News for A Change
Before we get into all the good news out there, let us first take a look at what the term "news" really means. By definition, the term "news" means the exception to the norm. If it is expected to happen then it is not news. If it differs from the norm, then it is news.
I'll bet with almost anyone that has stocks or mutual funds in his portfolio that he has losers, but he won't sell them because he "likes them" or some similar excuse. This is the philosophy of a loser.
There is no question that the stock market is being affected by war jitters. When it looks like peace we have a strong rally. When it looks like shooting will begin momentarily the market takes a dump. What should you do with your stock, mutual funds or cash that is waiting to find a home?
During our travel down life's path we come to many places where the trail divides and we must make a decision. Some involve psychological (emotional) choices ? marriage, divorce, leaving home, career changes, etc. Others are monetary ? buying a new car, home, starting your own business, investing, etc. Many are interwoven having aspects of both psychological and monetary.
Index Fund Trading Using Technical Analysis and Swing Trading Strategies
Index Fund Trading can be one of the most profitable...or most costly exercises you will ever do.
Trading Tips No 2: The Big Lie in the Stock Market
It is commonly reported that the stock market averages about 10% per year return over the long term (decades). So the investor that buys and holds a diversified portfolio of stocks or mutual funds is led to believe that their portfolio will grow by 10% per year on average. You know the mantra, “Not to worry, I’m a long term investor. On average, I’m earning 10% per year.”
Wall Street Paradigm
In 1960 an engineer working for a watch company in Switzerland discovered that a small crystal would vibrate at a constant rate. He found this was so accurate that it could be used to calibrate time so he took it to company management and said it would make an entirely new kind of watch that had no springs and no gears. They could not imagine who would want such a thing. Swiss watches dominated world commerce. They did not even bother to patent it.
Online Investing & Stock & Share Trading: 4 Reasons Why Most Online Investors & Traders Go Broke
Are you attracted to the idea of being in control of your financial future, but confused about how to start investing in the stock or share market, while avoiding costly mistakes?
Can?t Stand The Heat
It seems that every day I turn on the TV and find a Poker game. Texas No Limit seems to be all the rage these days. I love watching it. When I discuss this with others, their response is always the same, "You should play." Ah, but what they don't know is I stay out of the kitchen. As far as risk to reward ratio. That's a gamble I'm not willing to take. I prefer to invest my money. Sometimes I gamble in the stock market, but as long as I stay within my comfort zone (long term), I don't mind.
Top 25 Growth Funds
On Monday, November 25, 2000 Investor's Business Daily listed on page B1 the Top 25 Growth Mutual Funds for the last 36 months along with their performance for the year 2000 to date. Only four showed a profit this year of 21% and the other three had increases of 12%, 5%, and 5%. Fifteen had loss of from 10% to 28% and the other 6 were down slightly.
Alfred E. Newman
What! Me worry?
Basics of Stock Market
Financial markets provide their participants with the most favorable conditions for purchase/sale of financial instruments they have inside. Their major functions are: guaranteeing liquidity, forming assets prices within establishing proposition and demand and decreasing of operational expenses, incurred by the participants of the market.
How to Maximize Your 401k Mutual Fund Returns
When it comes to 401k's there is an overabundance of sad stories. Here is one that at least has a happy ending-and it's getting happier all the time.
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