The stock markets are a means to buy and sell, but they are a market place: when, what, and how often and how much one buys, accumulates or sells is NOT the province of the market: that is the province of the field of investment which is covered elsewhere. Investment in general is a rich and complex field as it serves all kinds of investors, government, corporations, services, groups and individuals: each investor has her own objective, her own access to capital which to invest. Indeed, the subject of investing can well be approached from the investors point of view. Given that I am writing this here in a wiki, an information forum open to and created by the community of the world, it might be appropriate to direct this summary to the individual small investor, who invests as part of a long term and life long plan of savings for herself, her family and heirs. Again, the market is a place where one trades (buys and sells) financial instruments, such as stock, bonds and the many forms of these instruments, and is not itself concerned with investing, ie, the strategy for making a profit under many many varied desires and circumstances. This section under the stock market should be dry, technical and thorough, and should serve as a reference. However, to understand the vehicles, form a coherent view of ones own objectives and the appropriate vehicles: stocks (common, preferred) bonds (convertible or not) one should start with an introduction to investing, and most likely, focusing at first on individual investing, which should be the most straight forward and the most useful.
Traditionally the US stock exchange has given an annual average return of seven percent after adjusting for inflation. This makes it one of the most lucrative investments available. Granted, there is no guarantee that the market will behave in the future as it has in the past, but it has been consistent in some respects over its 70+ year history.
The challenge and lure of Investing come from the fact that it is an inexact science. In physics, there are a few laws which govern a large variety of physical phenomena. In Investing, there are no such comparable laws. Investing is all about predicting the future. Since, there are a large number of factors influencing the future price of a stock, there is always a degree of uncertainty with any position.
Stocks are just one kind of financial instruments. The field is complicated by the fact that there are mutual funds, Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs), Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs), options, futures , bonds and several other kind of financial instruments. It takes almost a year to just familiarize oneself with the jargon of the field.
Buy or Sell Stock Advice,
Investing in the Market,
Investment Strategies for Stock Market,
Government Investment in Stock Market,
Learn About Share Market,
How Invest in Share Market,
Learn Stock Market,