Stock Market Investing and Ways to Invest in Securities

The stock market has outperformed gold, real estate, bonds, and other investment vehicles. It is a market for trading securities such as derivatives and stock. Derivatives include credit, commodity, interest rate, and foreign exchange derivatives. They are traded through the over-the-counter markets and the stock exchanges. The major exchanges include NASDAQ, the London Stock Exchange, NYSE, TMX Groups, and the Tokyo Stock Exchange.

Most investors sell stock during bear markets and buy during bull markets. The problem with this strategy is that they miss rebounds, and this is when seasoned investors and brokers make profits. Novice investors usually buy stock through open-ended investment companies and unit trusts. Other types of funds include private equity, exchange traded, closed-end, and mutual funds.

Stock Market Explained

In general, the stock market is a platform for selling and buying securities such as debentures and bonds issued by municipalities, public liability companies, and governments. Debentures and stock of companies are also traded.

The goal of the stock exchanges is to provide capital to businesses that seek to expand their operations. Companies fund their operations by raising investment capital. IPO refers to the first time a private company offers stock to the public. It is usually small companies and start-ups that offer stock and seek capital, but there are also some corporations that are publically traded.

Investors who buy stock are entitled to a percentage of the profits and assets of a business. The company’s trademarks, equipment and machinery, and buildings are considered assets. The sale of goods and services brings profits. Investing in stocks is risky, however, because it is difficult to predict whether the value of shares will go up or down. One way to limit risk is to buy shares of local businesses. This is provided that the investor is familiar with their operations, services, and financial data.

Novice investors usually trade stock through full-service brokers while experienced investors use the services of discount brokers. The traditional brokerage firms offer the full array of wealth management, advisory, and transactional services. Whether to hire a discount or full-service stockbroker depends on the type of investor you are. Some people research their investment options carefully, buy stock, and hold it for long periods of time. These are passive investors. Others want to consult their stockbroker on a weekly basis to check whether changes are necessary. The active investor is another type who trades stock on a daily basis. People also have different tolerance for risk. Many factors determine risk tolerance, including age, expenditures, investment plans, sources of income, and others. People invest in stock for different reasons: retirement savings, capitalizing a new business, house purchases, etc.

A good place to start is to discuss your investment options. You can invest in a combination of bonds, mutual funds, and individual stocks. One option is to look at Warren Buffett’s approach to investing, which is based on several key principals. People should buy the shares of companies with consistently high earnings, a proven earning capacity, sound management, and record of debt repayment. Other factors to consider include rates of return, book values, dividend yields, earnings, and price/earnings ratios. Increase in returns is more important than company growth. Investors should also pay attention to the company’s earnings, capital expenditures, and ways of dealing with inflation. Finally, there are two types of businesses for Buffett – non-commodity and commodity companies. The latter sell ordinary products and services. Non-commodity companies are different in that they sell original products and services and beat the competition. They have a competitive advantage and investors take less risk by buying their shares.

Related Articles

Securities as an Instrument to Trade and Invest
A security is a type of financial instrument that can be traded for cash. The three main categories of assets are derivative contracts, equity, and debt securities. They are issued and traded by businesses, corporations, government agencies, and municipal authorities. The majority of investment...

Full Service and Discount Brokers and Services Offered
A stockbroker is a professional who trades securities and charges a commission or fee. The commission depends on the value and size of the trade and the experience and reputation of the broker.Stockbrokers build a customer base by advertising in newspapers, magazines, and online. They often work...

Portfolio Management for Different Investment Instruments
Portfolio management refers to asset allocation and management of bonds, stocks, shares and other securities. The term portfolio is used for a pool of investment instruments, including cash, mutual funds, bonds, and others. The aim of portfolio management is to maximize returns and minimize risks...

Securities and Exchange Commission: Roles and Responsibilities
The Securities and Exchange Commission works to oversee corporate takeovers and to protect investors in the United States. Established by the U.S. government, SEC requires that publicly traded companies disclose their financial information to the general public. Investment advisers are required to...

Follow Tessa on