My introduction to the stock market was via the back door really. There I was with a few thousand sitting in the bank and not earning anything at all when a small article caught my eye. It talked of the stock market as a way to invest and make some cash which was enough to get my interest.
The long and short of it is that I started looking back through some old newspapers, to see what the local stocks had been doing, and I noticed that several had been steadily gaining over the past year. So with check in hand I ventured into the nearest brokers and asked for some advice.
Having already chosen three or four companies that interested me I put down the check and made my order. To my surprise, that was about as much as I had to do. I got my receipt and went home to wait for the money to come rolling in.
But my interest did not stop there for sure. I started watching all the business programs, started getting the newspaper every day, and generally started watching the stock market with a vengeance. I made up some graphs on my computer so that I could see easily which way the stocks that I had chosen were going and literally could not miss the evening news every day to see what they had to say.
At one point my stocks were increasing in value be about 25% over the course of three or four months and the excitement was getting too much to contain. But then came the general election – I live in an African country – followed by some unrest, and down they came again, just like that.
However, not to be defeated, I bought into some other stocks that hit rock bottom after the unrest and now they are doing very nicely thank you. Indeed, one initial offering – a new stock on the block so to speak – has gone up by more than three hundred per cent. Since the offer price was very low, I bought a lot of them and now I am reaping the benefits.
Now what interests me is not the actual rising of prices since this goes very slowly sometimes. It is the way in which companies run their businesses over the course of the business year. Everything goes on here, with all the intrigue of a good soap opera, and the little gossip pieces in the newspapers just adds fuel to the fire.
Take, for example, the latest spill by a giant petroleum company. Because of the ecological disaster, the stocks have hit rock bottom and the CEO has been given a golden parachute to commit career suicide. Of course, this company, one of the biggest in the world will undoubtedly recover from the disaster, but getting in now to buy the stock will mean a windfall in the future.
So my advice to those who have money to spare, and which is not tied up in the kids’ future college fund of course, having a little timely fling may just bring some great rewards. But caution here. This is not usually a short term dip in the stock market pool but rather a controlled swim until you reach the other end. Get in too deep and bad things will happen for sure.
For those willing to take a calculated risk, this is a great way to hone skills on the stock market while making an extra buck or two – hopefully – along the way. Patience is the key, along with some extra study on the companies with stock to sell. Dallas or Dynasty has nothing on some of the board room wrangles that are revealed on a regular basis!