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Investing can be one of the best ways to make money, but can also be one of the best ways to lose it all, as well. So, knowing how to invest wisely is absolutely crucial. It may seem overwhelming, but the tips in this article can help you on your way to successful investing.

Pay attention to cycles, and wait for the bull market to emerge. You must be ready to pounce when things are on the upswing. If you do your homework, you will learn to recognize when a bear market is about to do an about-face and head in the other direction.

If you have some spare money to invest consider putting it into your employer-based pension plan. Many companies will match a percentage up to 100% of the contributions made by its employees, and this is basically the opportunity to receive free money. If you don’t take advantage of this, it is tantamount to wasting quite a substantial opportunity.

Aim for investing in stocks from companies that are financially sound and have earning growth that are above the market average. There are over 6,000 publicly traded companies in the United States stock markets, available to choose from. However, applying these criteria reduces your target pool of stocks to just around 200 choices to invest in.

Don’t think of stocks as something abstract. Think of them as money invested in a company. Evaluate the health of companies, and peruse their financial statements when assessing your stocks’ value. With this broader perspective you will be able to make more informed decisions about whether or not to buy or sell a particular stock.

If you are investing in a stock, be aware of potential changes and prepare for them. The stock market is like a roller coaster, always going up and down, and it is crucial that you are prepared for this to happen. If you feel like you need to know more about these changes, do your research on the Internet.

For some fun in investing in stocks, take a look at penny stocks. The term applies not just to stocks worth pennies, but most stocks with values less than a few dollars. Since these stocks come dirt cheap, even a movement of a dollar or two can yield major dividends. This can be a low cost way of learning the markets.

Save money by trading online. Search online for firms that offer cheap stock trading. Quite often, their fees are much lower than traditional brokerage firms. A regular broker will usually charge a high commission, just to make a simple stock trade on your behalf. If possible, try to pay between $7 and $10 per trade.

A simple investment plan is the best bet for a beginner. Although you may be tempted to diversify quickly, find one method that works well before venturing out into other avenues. Slow and steady will earn you the most over time.

Hold your stocks as long as you can, from a minimum of five years to maybe eternity. Do not sell when the markets have been rough for a day or even a year. Also do not sell if your stock has doubled or tripled. As long as your reasons for holding that stock are still good, then keep holding it. Reinvest any earnings you do not need in the next five years. Sell only if the stock goes so high that the business is just maxed out and not going to grow anymore.

Learn how to balance risks and rewards. The more successful investors spend a bunch of time studying market trends and current news about the economy. They don’t gamble and they put their money into an ETF, stock, or mutual fund following some careful analysis. This helps keep their balance on an upswing, even when they take a hit.

When you start out, stick with known companies. If you are new to the market, these options can fill your portfolio with stocks that offer lower risks for their investors. Later on, once you have gained more experience, branching out to smaller companies will be less stressful and much less risky. Remember that small cap stocks can earn a higher return but also present more risk.

Beginner stock traders would be wise to avoid risky investments when they are starting out, as this is a sure way to lose money quickly. Investing in things like features, foreign stocks and options are extremely volatile and should only be traded by people with a great deal of experience.

As previously noted, investing can be the way to achieve financial success or it can be the way to lose it all. It all depends on the way you invest, along with a little luck. The hints and advice in this article are provided to help you find the investment methods that are right for you.