This is intended for someone who has had little if any investment experience. It may be a bit simplified but you’ll learn the very basics of investing. It's arranged in Sections or Lessons, each just a few minutes long. A glossary of investment terms is here.
SECTION/LESSON 1. WHO SHOULD INVEST? WHEN TO START?
Everyone needs to invest. Your money simply won’t grow enough in a savings account to keep up with inflation. Investing helps your money work for you, and allows you to earn more money than you can anywhere else. Before you begin investing there are at least two things you should do.
Wait until you’re debt free – Don’t forgo paying bills so you can invest. Pay off all your credit cards and personal loans before you start investing. And develop the discipline to pay all your credit cards in full every month, so there is no interest.
Have An Emergency Fund – After you’ve paid off all credit cards and personal loans, build a budget, save up an emergency fund, and then start investing. A fund for the unexpected, not just unexpected expenses but an unexpected stop in your income. How much to put in this fund depends on several factors, including your living expenses and how solid (i.e., dependable) your income stream is. Go here to see where to put this money.
In each of the next sections we'll cover some basic investment concepts for stocks, bonds and real estate (I don’t know enough about commodities and I don’t recommend them for beginners).
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1 This was updated in Oct. 2019. The views expressed here are mine and at times may depart from the norm. In preparing this article I first read several articles, and ideas or phrases from those articles may have unintentionally crept into mine; I am happy to remove any plagiarism if alerted.