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Stock Market Stupid

Posted by Michie1 (My Page) on
Thu, Mar 17, 05 at 14:16

I know I'm stock market stupid (I've generally stuck with more traditional/stable methods of savings), but I was hoping someone would be able to give me a reliable place to be able to buy/sell stocks on my own without paying huge broker fees. Years ago I used e-trade.com to sell off some stocks that were my mother in law's but don't know if there are other sites that are better these days. I thought I heard there was one that was $4 a trade, is that true? Also is there a good site to be able to track what the stocks are selling for these days?


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Stock Market Stupid

I like to use Yahoo. I think it is by far the best free site. I gave up on the stock market. I tried to apply the same logic to the stock market as I do to buying and selling everything else - and it doesn't work. I lost money I could ill afford to lose and finally sold my last stock just before it zoomed. I even managed to buy macro media for very little and still lose money on it on a temporary down - just before it zoomed. I got trashed in steel. I thought the US gov wouldn't let the US steel industry go down the tubes because it was necessary for national defense to have our own steel plants - wrong again! There may be logic to the stock market, but I couldn't find it. I used E-trade, but there is probably something better/cheaper to use.


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RE: Stock Market Stupid

There are a number of discount brokers offering their services.

Don't know about the $4.00 per trade - usually it's $15. - 20. here in Canada, as a base cost, plus a few pennies per share. Up here, we have a number of banks that operate nation-wide, and most of them offer a discount broker service, either dealing through a trader, or one can make one's trades online (at lower cost).

Look arond, as I'm sure that some friends can provide the information that you need.

joyful guy


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RE: Stock Market Stupid

If you want to invest regularly and would be satisfied with a limited pool of stocks, you might check out Sharebuilder.com. For a fee of about $12.00/month, you get six "free" trades.


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RE: Stock Market Stupid

Scottrade. $7/trade. Market or limit orders. Dunno about stop orders. May not have em anymore. No premarket and aftermarket quotes/trading.

E/T is very reasonable considering the service provided IMO. Commission depends how much is in your account; how many trades/month. Full range of stop orders, stop limit ordes etc. on all exchanges. Premarket and aftermarket quotes/trading; a valuable tool.

I found stock research was better at Scottrade than Etrade. It varies over the years as they change now and then. Actually had to use both to get the picture I required.






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RE: Stock Market Stupid

Michiel,

If you want to purchase stocks where there's only a few traded daily, probably best to use limit orders, for if you give a market order and the next best price on offer at that precise time is quite a bit above the price that you expected ... guess what price you'll have paid?

Limit orders usually cost a bit higher fee.

Good wishes for skilful investing.

Some call the costs that go with making some mistakes ... tuition.

Best if you know someone familiar with how the market works who'll give you useful guidance - most of us like to talk about issues that we know something about.

One of the best Canadian money management magazines carries no ads ... so, being totally subscriber-driven, they asked the subscribers what they'd like.

One request was that subscribers have an opportunity to meet with other subscribers in that locality - so they have a list of about three dozen locations in Canada where people meet.

They've done so in London for 8 - 10 years: I've been attending for about 6 years. Meet 2 hours monthly, usually 15 - 18 attendees, room at no cost, so only cost is gas to get there. A great variety of opinions expressed. At each meeting, everyone usually reports on what they've bought and sold during the month (no refence to amounts involved). I've learned a lot from that bunch. Prior to my recent move, I used to travel often with a neighbour - I did buy him a coffee or some gas, occasionally.

After the meeting, about half of us repaired to a coffee house to chin-wag for another hour or so. They have a plan where if you buy eight coffees, registered on a card, you get a free one. So several of us have picked up a card, managed to be first in line of our crowd at the coffee counter, then have everyone buying get our card stamped.

I had one partly filled at home, got another one the other night, then gave it to another regular attendee after all of the stamping had been done.

About half a dozen of the groups nationwide have started a contest - allocate $100,000. at beginning of the year, use it to buy 5 stocks. Recent update found some above market averages, some below - some below amount originally invested. See which group's picks do best by year-end.

Have a joyful holiday weekend, all.

ole joyful


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RE: Stock Market Stupid

Hey, Michie. If you want some basic education before you invest, try going to fool.com. If you want to just jump in without educating yourself, there's Sharebuilder.com for investing in individual stocks. You might be interested in a DRIP - Dividend Re - Investment Program where you buy stock directly from the company with no broker involved. I'm a novice at stocks, don't understand all the jargon & lingo yet, but I'm in a Proctor & Gamble DRIP and so far it's been profitable. I send in $100 when I can and P&G takes a $2.50 fee and buys stock with the rest.


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RE: Stock Market Stupid

I made my living from it.

You'd best buy about 6 different books by 6 different authors on stock mkt investing and cool em. The first book I ever bot was "Financial Planning for the Utterly Confused", cost $6.95, after 2 financial planners broke me! "When to Sell" by Justin Mamis is old, 1977, but good.

Learn the jargon. Don't listen to rookies and stay away from NAIC (National Association of Investing Clubs); They should rename it HNTBS (How Not To Buy Stocks).

Try to hook up with an investing friend of your same abilities, ambitions and goals so you can learn together, compare notes and discuss decisions. I had 2 of em. We were hot dogs and really got into it. Lots of studying, discussions and discoveries. Above all trust in your OWN judgement. Nobody elses. Nobody!


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RE: Stock Market Stupid

Hi Michie1,

Usually you need to own (at least) one share of a company before you can become involved in their Dividend Re-Investment Plan (DRIP).

Many then allow you to purchase more shares with additional cash infusion, but some only allow you to re-invest dividends which they are paying on the shares that you own already. In which case having bought one share would not have been such a good idea.

Quite often stockbrokers charge a fee above the purchase commission when you ask them to have the share(s) registered in your name.

Good wishes for skilful investing.

joyful guy

P.S. I've been a personal financial advisor for twenty years, only the first year selling mutual funds, since then operating as a fee-for-service planner, selling no financial products.

So my clients need have no worry that I'm trying to sell them some financial products - that I sell. Rather than some others that might be better for their situation, but which I don't happen to sell.

jg


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RE: Stock Market Stupid

I guess I'm more stupid than I thought. Most of this sounds like Greek to me. Thanks for your input though.

Michie


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RE: Stock Market Stupid

Try mutual funds, many companies will give you detailed information about their funds on the web. Go to someplace like T Rowe Price and just browse the site. It will give you someplace to do research and learn more...
Good luck!


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RE: Stock Market Stupid

From your original post:

""Also is there a good site to be able to track what the stocks are selling for these days?""

The absolute best way is to subscribe to a stock quote service like Quotes Plus or Telecharts 2000 (TC 2000). Cost about $250 to $300 per year. You download end of day quotes every day for about 11,000 stocks and can look at charts (graphs) of the stocks and indexes of your choice. With TC2000 you can look at a particular chart monthly, weely, daily, 3day which is a very valuable tool, or any number of days 1-9. The charts go back about 10 years.

The long term charts establish the general trend (is the stock moving in a steady or definable trend?). Monthly and weekly charts show the near term trend (is the stock gettng ready to make a change in trend?). Daily charts establish if the stock has started to make its move (ie which day should you buy it?). And finally the broker and TC2000 will/can show you a real time 1-minute interval chart during the day to decide just when during the day to buy or sell or go short.

There IS no substitute for books. They don't lie. The mutual funds lie. Brokers lie. Remember above all else: you are just a commission to those people and the only thing between them and their home mortage is you.

You can refer to the books over and over, stop in the middle of a trade and check something out. Whenever I switch from long to short trading out comes the book for a quick review. Comprendi?

$250/yr sounds high but it will come back many times over in 1 good trade and you can stay on top of your stocks. I started out subscribing to ValueLine, about $550/yr. Read it at night. Read it on the pot. Took pages to work with me. You can probly find it in your library for free, on-line for a fee.

Where to stop? Better pinch it off here. The price of investment books and end-of-day quotes is nil vs bad trades based on quesswork and/or live human advice.


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RE: Stock Market Stupid

$250?!!!!! I am only looking to buy 1 stock? There must be a free service offerred by the stock exchange, no?

Michelle


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RE: Stock Market Stupid

Michie1,

There's a lot of information at Yahoo, then click on the "Finance" option.

If you enter the symbol (see them listed beside the name of the stock in a good financial paper, e.g. N.Y. Times), it will show you what the current price is, during the day (with 15 - 20 min. delay).

If you click on the symbol, it will show you recent information about that stock, plus chart of stock price ranges, over a day, a few days, a month or so, a year, 5 years, etc.

In most libraries you can look up information about a whole host of stocks.

Very few mutual funds have a long-term track record of much higher than stock market averages. Which are somewhere in the neighbourhood of 7 - 8% annual growth.

U.S. mutual fund managers often charge about 1.5% management fee - which is a fairly hefty percentage of your growth for the year. Many Canadian mutual fund managers charge over 2% annual management fee, which is about a quarter of the usual rate of growth.

However, if the value of the stocks in their portfolio drops - they still get their fee.

There are some stocks that carry a number of stocks as part of their business, so they operate somewhat like a mutual fund. One such could have been bought for $12. in 1965 and recent price was quite a few thousand, as they've never split.

Some say that they've not paid out any of their earnings, either - which would have meant that you'd have incurred no tax liability since '65, had you bought shares then and continue to hold them. But the guys who claim that are wrong - they paid out 10 cents in 1967, so shareholders would have had some tax liability that year.

I understand that they own more Coke shares than any other agency, plus a lot of Gillette, insurance, candy, etc.

Their annual report is written in language that most of us can understand.

I'm not suggesting that you should buy any of that company. I own some shares - of the recently issued kind, which are valued at one-thirtieth of the original shares.

Good wishes for learning how to make wise investment decisions.

ole joyful


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RE: Stock Market Stupid -amended

Michie1,

There's a lot of information at Yahoo, then click on the "Finance" option.

If you enter the symbol (see them listed beside the name of the stock in a good financial paper, e.g. N.Y. Times), it will show you what the current price is, during the day (with 15 - 20 min. delay).

If you click on the symbol, it will show you recent information about that stock, plus chart of stock price ranges, over a day, a few days, a month or so, a year, 5 years, etc.

In most libraries you can look up information about a whole host of stocks.

Very few mutual funds have a long-term track record of much higher than stock market averages. Which are somewhere in the neighbourhood of 7 - 8% annual growth.

U.S. mutual fund managers often charge about 1.5% management fee - which is a fairly hefty percentage of your growth for the year. Many Canadian mutual fund managers charge over 2% annual management fee, which is about a quarter of the usual rate of growth.

However, if the value of the stocks in their portfolio drops - they still get their fee.

There are some stocks that carry a number of stocks as part of their business, so they operate somewhat like a mutual fund. One such could have been bought for $12. in 1965 and recent price was quite a few thousand, as they've never split.

Some say that they've not paid out any of their earnings, either - which would have meant that you'd have incurred no tax liability since '65, had you bought shares then and continue to hold them. But the guys who claim that are wrong - they paid out 10 cents in 1967, so shareholders would have had some tax liability that year.

I understand that they own more Coke shares than any other agency, plus a lot of Gillette, insurance, candy, etc.

Their annual report is written in language that most of us can understand.

I'm not suggesting that you should buy any of that company. I own some shares - of the recently issued kind, which are valued at one-thirtieth of the original shares.

Good wishes for learning how to make wise investment decisions.

ole joyful


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RE: Stock Market Stupid

last post "$250?!!!!! I am only looking to buy 1 stock?"
first post "reliable place to be able to buy/sell stocks on my own without"

Where did Buy one Stock come from?
===============================

"I heard there was one that was $4 a trade, is that true?"

Sure is. Get into one of those day trading pits and make 50 trades a day as fast as you can think and move. Better yet get a day trading program to do it at home with real time quotes and a couple computers all for only $3000 up front and a couple hundred a month real time fees and exchange fees.

And NO. The exchanges don't provide free anything. You might get it apparently free from your brokerage account but they pay for it from your commissions.

But if you tried a library book or two (free) you'd know all this too. :-)

I just typed into Google "Stock Market Investing Books" and got this: (don't know how to make those link things)

Stock and Investment Guide for Beginning Stock Market Investors
... is a book you should have. ... who know absolutely nothing about the stock market or
other various investments, it's a great introduction to investing. ...
pages.prodigy.com/wealth/ - 12k - Cached - Similar pages
=======================
enuf


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RE: Stock Market Stupid

Michie1, for $250 you can join a company that has a DRIP. It cost me $250 to join up with P&G. There are many many other well-known companies that offer drips. Just type in DRIP or dividend reinvestment plan in your web search to get to some pages that will list DRIP companies. I found the P&G drip in a book, called the phone number, they sent out paperwork, and I enrolled. Fight the fear of the unknown. DON"T pay money unnecessarily for information. Again, I find fool.com very helpful to "money stupid" people like me. I also found that owning some stock gave me the impetus to learn more and fight the fear of advanced finances.
Join a DRIP in some company you know and like and understand. P&G sells TIDE soap powder. I use TIDE. My grandfather raved about TIDE. I also use DAWN for dishes and I understand what CREST toothpaste is and what Oil Of Olay is. Invest in something you understand.


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RE: Stock Market Stupid

Hi again cube1067,

$250. fee to set up a DRIP plan?

Holy cow!

Up here, one can do it at no charge - and of course one needs at least one share of stock.

But if one chooses to buy only one share of stock, that's usually a strategy that one uses in order to become an investor in the company, with a view to participating in another plan, the Share Purchase Plan (SPP), to purchase a substantial number more shares.

For example, if one were to buy a share of a $30.00 stock, paying 3%, that would be 90 cents annual payout, so it would take over 30 years to buy one more share - if price stayed at present level. If share price grew, likely payout would, as well, so purchase time for next share would be probably about the same.

But ... some companies don't like to do the accounting for partial shares.

michie1,

If you go to the usual major library, they have resources that give a great deal of info about hundreds of individual (mainly U.S.) stocks. Also about how the stock market works.

If you use Google to ask for various company names in which you may be interested, many of them have information of interest to investors/potential investors.

As I said before - check the "Finance" portion of Yahoo. There's a wealth of information there.

Good wishes for skillful investing.

ole joyful


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RE: Stock Market Stupid

The $250 was P&G's initial amount to join their DRIP. The fee was $7.50; the rest of the money bought stock. Matter of fact, the very day I mailed my initial $250, P&G's stock price tanked and I got more shares than I'd thought my $250 would buy the day before. Now that I'm a member, the minimum purchase I can do is $100.


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RE: Stock Market Stupid

Cube-
I applaud your doing it on yer own.

I just looked at Etrade and they automatically reinvest your divs with no minimum and fractional shares is no problem. You might like their plan. Might not, dunno. There's pros and cons of course.

After recovering a bit from the financial planners that did us in I read that book "Financial Planning for the Totally Confused" and got the address of the US Treasury Dept. Wrote for their info pkg on T-bills, note, bonds.

At that time you had to submit your tenders by mail with certified checks. Well we saved up and did just that. The first one my wife and I each had a hand on the envelope as we put it in the mailbox together. It was kind of corny but it was the first step to financial independence.

I can't even begin to describe the feeling of fredom that resulted from that simple cornball act. We regained control of our own destiny. I still get a bit emotional thinking of it. :-)


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RE: Stock Market Stupid

Hi again, cube,

Thanks for the clarification.

I think that I was wrong - I think that a number of companies up here charge a small initial fee for set-up, as well.

michie1,

Most of my shares are held in the database of the brokerage house, but there are some which I've owned for years that were registered in my name - and which I use as collateral at the bank when I wish to use them as collateral for a loan.

I can't use the shares in the brokerage database to ask the company to set up a DRIP, but I can ask the brokerage to have any portion of the shares which currently they hold in their database in my account to be registered in my name.

When I ask my stockbroker who to register that share/those shares in my name, most brokerage houses charge $35. - 50. administration fee to administer the arrangement with the company involved to get that certificate issued to me.

I must own at least one share in my name to open a DRIP account with a company. But I wouldn't think of buying just one share from a broker, then asking for it be be registered in my name, unless I intended, once the DRIP was established, to send new money directly to the company to buy more shares using their Share Purchase Plan. Most who offer DRIPs offer Share Purchase Plans, as well - but one would want to know for sure before buying just one share through a broker and having it registered.

If I own a hundred shares, of course, I'd almost always have the whole hundred issued in certificate form.

As for these messages being all Greek to you - ask some specific questions, and we'll explain more fully.

Actually - I took some Greek. But that was over 50 years ago, and it was the classical type, not the modern stuff - they wanted me to be able to read the New Testament in the original language. Don't ask me now what it says!

Good wishes for improving our investment skills.

Getting started is half the battle.

ole joyful


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