Despite popular belief, investing in the Stockmarket does not have to involve high risk, extortionate commissions and fees, punitive restrictions, specialised knowledge or even much effort on your part. There are many different ways to invest your hard earned money to create wealth. Some routes involve higher risk than others.
Depending on your objectives, your aim should be to choose the lowest risk route for your investments.
The ideal conditions to make your investments worthwhile would depend on your individual circumstances but there are general conditions that most people expect. Usually these are:
1. High return
2. Minimal Risk
3. Low Maintenance
4. Low Fees and Commissions
5. Easy Access
6. Maximum Flexibility
7. Tax Efficiency
Although no one can guarantee you a high return on your investment, when you invest over the long term and are not pressured to withdraw your money in the short-term, you are virtually protected from market corrections. Sudden downturns in the market are factors that affect the short-term investor.
The ability to generate a significantly high return on your investment comes with the willingness to accept a relatively low investment risk. A good investment should produce returns between ten to fifteen per cent over a number of years with a minimal risk to your money.
A reasonable target return to aim for is twelve percent, which can mean that your investment can fluctuate annually. But over a number of years you can anticipate an average return over a number of years of twelve percent. When the return on your investment dips at any time to seven percent at any time that should not cause any concern providing the average return for the entire period is high.
It is equally important to limit the investment risk to your money. The subject of risk is relative to every person, and greatly depends on your financial circumstances and your understanding of the Stockmarket. Your aim for any investment should be to achieve a high growth with minimal investment risk to money. Ideally, you should be investing your money for the medium to long term. Short-term investing is inherently risky as it exposes you to fluctuations in the Stockmarket.
Even experienced investors and professionals lose money speculating on the stock market. Some people spend their entire professional lives studying stocks and shares and still only get it right half of the time.
For a person fairly inexperienced with the Stockmarket, investing directly into the market bears a higher risk and can be potentially costly, with less predictable outcomes. That is why investment advertising always includes the warning: "The value of your investment can go down as well as up", and "Past performance is not necessarily a guide to the future".
The good news is that you do not have to be a specialist in the market to benefit from high growth with minimal risk.
Investing through a stockbroker is one of the most expensive routes into the Stockmarket, especially if you are just starting. This is usually high maintenance investing, as you need to give instructions to the stockbroker when shares are being bought or sold, and monitor the Stockmarket regularly. Also, your investment should achieve a significantly higher return to justify the additional funds to pay the stockbrokers fees.
Ideally, most people prefer investments that are easy to set up and simple to maintain with little investment knowledge. It should take some effort to initially set up and manage, but once set up you want to be able to focus on other important aspects of your life, including generating more wealth in other areas.
It is best to look for the safer routes into the Stockmarket depending on your financial circumstances. Once you have more spare capital you can choose to play the market then.
Look out for Part Two
Copyright 2006 Margaret Ntifo