A majority of people out there thinks that investing is not for everyone. A recent survey by Blackrock revealed some critical reasons across generations, and as for why people would postpone or even not consider to invest at all. Let’s take a look at the top 4 of those concerns:
- Access to and understanding of information about investing
- Having not enough money to start investing
- Being too worried about one’s current financial situation (and thus being too busy to worry about the future)
- Being afraid of losing everything
All valid points. Some related to each other in one or the other way. So let’s take a look at each of these points one by one. Today’s article will start off the series by taking a closer look at the first point:
Access to and understanding of information about investing
This was the most significant worry in the survey and I am frankly a little astounded by it. I wouldn’t be surprised at all to see this point popping up 10 years ago. But now… it’s 2019. We got the most powerful source of knowledge ever created available (almost) for free, and readily accessible. The internet offers almost unlimited opportunities to gain knowledge.
To be fair, the internet is also full of crap. It takes some time and a little effort to find the most suitable educational source. But it’s definitely all there. Blogs, Podcasts, Audiobooks, YouTube videos, online magazines… In case you don’t know where to start, here a list of some of my most common sources to read and research:
- The Motley Fool – www.fool.com
The .com website is for the US market, but they also have websites for other countries, such as Germany, Hong Kong, Singapore, the UK and more. TMF is a great place to start your journey as the articles are always short, crisp and well explained. If you are not familiar with financial terms and/or stocks in general, this is a great place to start your educational journey. I may be a little biased here because, as some of my regular readers might know, I am regularly contributing to their German website. Still, I can say without a doubt, that the TMF community is thriving and full of interesting ideas and tons of knowledge with fresh articles coming out on a daily basis. They main target group are readers who want to learn about and educate themselves about investing.
- Seeking Alpha – https://seekingalpha.com
This one is actually a website for professionals, but there are a few authors who regularly write very detailed and well-explained articles, either for individual stocks or entire markets. It is set up like a good, old-fashioned forum with thousands of individual contributors mostly from the US. I have personally learned really a lot from this website, especially when it comes to BDC and REIT investing. Since the main target group seems to be retirees, they have a heavy focus on high yield dividend investments and many articles seem to be slightly biased towards this topic. If you ask me, there is nothing wrong with that. Just don’t take it as your only source of “wisdom”.
- The Street – https://www.thestreet.com
If you are up for some entertaining reads and to see all the drama that evolves around companies, markets, and the world, then this should be one website on your schedule to visit at least once a week. Run by an entertaining wall-street guy called Jim Cramer, this website wants to offer not only current news but also introduce the world of investments in general to its readers. Take a peek, it’s worth it.
- Yahoo Finance – https://finance.yahoo.com
If you find a stock that you are interested in and want to know more about it, research it with Yahoo Finance. That’s what I do. Even though Yahoo itself might be out of favor as a company, their financial website is one of the best you can find. Whether you are looking for fundamental data (the numbers) or want to take a look and analyze their chart, Yahoo got you covered.
- Listen Money Matters – https://www.listenmoneymatters.com
You prefer podcasts? Look for “Listen Money Matters”. I listen to it on and off. Not too regularly because I actually don’t like noise and those guys are entertaining, but yeah, noisy. Having said that, they cover tons of topics and can teach in a very entertaining manner.
- ChooseFI – https://www.choosefi.com
Another podcast is ChooseFI, with the FI standing for Financial Independence. Again, I listen on and off and think that there is always something new for me to learn.
- Flipboard – https://flipboard.com
Yeah, this app is amazing. Of course, it’s mainly a news app, but if you put in investment, retirement, FIRE, etc. in your fields of interest, you will receive a regular dose of information on these topics and develop your understanding of the world of finance. What I actually also recommend to do with Flipboard is to follow those companies that you actually have or plan to buy stocks/shares from. It’s never a bad idea to know what your company is doing and how it is being perceived in the world and the Flipboard algorithm will filter all the related news out for you.
There are significantly more tools to use out there, so these are just some that you might want to take a look at. The important thing is to get started and to be consistent with your reading efforts. So whatever it is you do all day long, try to dedicate 30-60 minutes a day to read. Doing that, you will quickly see your understanding of the financial world developing to the next level. That’s only 2-4% of your day. I think it’s worth it.
The next article will tackle the second reason not to invest: Having not enough money to start investing.