Houses, gold, tulips . . . our idea of what constitutes a good ‘investment’
has changed dramatically over time but one precious, valuable idea
still holds true: that shares over the long term have been a great investment
and have without doubt made their intrepid ‘holders’ returns of between
5 and 7 per cent per annum over many decades. Obviously that optimistic
assessment requires a huge caveat, perhaps even a flashing warning sign of
epic proportions, loudly proclaiming that investing in shares can be a rollercoaster
ride! Anyone piling their hard-earned fortune into the stock market
in 2007 would soon have realised that shares (also called equities or stocks)
can be hugely volatile and that you can lose your money almost overnight.
Remember the dark days of early winter 2008, when the financial markets
stood on the edge of catastrophe and shares were plunging by 5 per cent one
day and 10 per cent the next? Scary stuff, but within 12 months the markets
had staged a remarkable recovery and some stocks – especially those of the
big banks – had more than trebled in value. The moral of the story is simple:
investing in shares can sometimes be fun, often risky, but also frequently
rewarding, especially if you are patient, careful and diligent. This book can
definitely help you avoid the mistakes others have made and can point you in
the right direction.
Explore the pages of this book and find the topics that most interest you
regarding the world of share investing. Understanding what not to do can be
just as important as working out what to do. The single difference between
success and failure, between gain and loss, boils down to one word: knowledge.
Take this book as your first step in a lifelong learning adventure.