By Robert Kraft
As a millennial investor myself, and Editor-in-Chief of StockNewsNow.com, the Official News Source on MicroCap stocks, there are many things one needs to consider and understand when entering the world of investing. It’s not our parents’ generation anymore, where the Internet reigns supreme with SO MUCH information at our fingertips that even considering investing in MicroCaps has become less risky. But let’s keep it simple for this list. Here are my suggestions to getting started.
1. How much money can you afford to lose? You want to invest, but you don’t know where to start. Firstly, it’s important to understand you’re investment goals. If you’re trying to open an account with a broker dealer, or your own account online, you need to consider what you are trying to accomplish, it’s not as simple as, “I want make as much money as possible, for as little investment as possible.” More often than not, as a millennial, you’re probably interested in building your wealth because investing won’t be your primary source of income. Ask yourself the following questions: How much personal time do you want to devote to investing? Are you a value investor (long term) or a trader (short term)?
2. Determine how you can convert your interests into investment opportunities. If you’re looking into investing in the Stock Market, and don’t know what companies to start looking at first, start with what you know, i.e., hobbies, what do you wear everyday, where you eat, what electronics do you use, etc… See if any of the companies producing goods that you use on a daily basis are public on websites like Yahoo Finance. Make a list of companies that are interesting to you. Look at a huge company’s competitors that are 8th or 9th on the list of ten, typically they may be more affordable than a Fortune 100 company. As an example, I love to surf and I use my GoPro all the time, so starting out, I might make a list of companies that have to do with surfing: Quiksilver (ZQK), GoPro (GPRO), even Nike (NKE – owners of Hurley) - and then make a list of all their competitors. Converting interests into investments also includes affordability and diversification. Ask yourself should I buy 10 shares of a $100 stock or buy 1,000 shares of a $1 stock, and how to spread the different stocks into building a portfolio.
3. Utilize the resources available to you. As I said at the beginning, there are SO MANY information sources about stocks and finance that to sift through all of them would be a nightmare. Here are a few resources that I use on a daily basis to get my information:
- Investopedia.com – Great source if you’re not sure what certain financial terms mean. They have definitions, tutorials, videos, commentary that I’ve used quite regularly.
- YahooFinance.com and MarketWatch.com – these two websites are far and away the biggest news and information sources about stocks that are out there. Both websites are probably the most recognizable in the industry for all stock market information.
- StockNewsNow.com – not to be self-serving, but our website is a great source for information about MicroCap companies. Our parents’ generation, where there wasn’t as much information available, especially about MicroCap stocks had a much harder time finding information and transparency. Although MicroCap stocks are riskier investments, the returns can yield greater rewards. And, with the majority of MicroCaps costing less than $5 per share (initial entry cost thus being cheaper than blue chips), higher growth potential, and the plethora of information (and companies) now available, StockNewsNow.com is a tremendous outlet to find the next great MicroCap idea.
4. Create a portfolio and start following companies that peak your interest. Again, not to be self-serving, but on StockNewsNow.com, for example, you have the ability to register for an account, “My Portfolio”, for free, and start following all the MicroCap companies you want (laying the groundwork for your own portfolio before you invest a dime). Any time one of the companies you follow has any news, you get an update sent to your email address. Follow the news, read the press releases, watch the videos – not only see how the stock is performing, but listen to what the CEO is saying, and if the CEO executed his business plan. By becoming more familiar with the company, the more comfortable you’ll feel when deciding how to invest (or not). This is called DOING YOUR DUE DILIGENCE!
5. Determine whether you want to open an online account or use a full service broker. Read the fine print before opening an account, and make sure you understand all the charges and minimums etc. Compare the details, services and fees of an online broker with a full service brokerage firm. One quick note on the difference in experience – if you are more the DIY-type, than you might want to consider the online broker route; if you don’t have as much time to do research or look for new ideas, full service brokerage firms provide more personal attention. Even if you’re a DIY-type, or more inclined to open an account at a brokerage firm, always remember – Buyer Beware.
As I said in Point #4, I can’t stress enough the importance of doing your diligence, reading the research, listening to professionals – all the tools to be a successful investor are at your fingertips. It’s a lot of work, but once you see that first return, trust me – you’ll be hooked.
BIO: Robert Kraft is Chief Operating Officer of SNN Incorporated, publishers of StockNewsNow.com and the MicroCap Review Magazine. Mr. Kraft also serves as Editor-in-Chief of StockNewsNow.com, The Official MicroCap News Source. Previously, Robert was a Junior Research Analyst at Southridge Investment Group in New York City doing research and compiling information about MicroCap companies. He is also the Co-Founder and CEO of Sammi Girl Productions, a multimedia production company, focused on creating quality content in the areas of film, music, theatre, web and merchandise.
Robert is also working on a series of educational articles teaching Millennials about the investing opportunities in MicroCap stocks. He was recently featured in the Huffington Post sharing his thoughts in the article, "4 Things I Wish I Knew About Money in my 20s".
Robert Kraft graduated with a B.A. in Communications from the University of California, San Diego.
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