The announcement of a snap general election didn’t do much to inspire confidence in the markets did it? Market confidence is all important. Investors want stability and certainty unless they are contrarian investors who like to profit from the volatility.
Any sign of common-sense and cooperation between the superpowers is good for the global economy. There doesn’t seem to be much chance of that at the moment as things get more volatile. Someone once said there is never a bad day on the stock market, when it’s down you buy and when it’s up you sell. It’s not quite as simple as that but there are always opportunities. We need certainty but we find continued risk and uncertainty.
One thing I have learnt about investing is never look back and regret your decisions. You can’t change the past so concentrate on the here and now and of course try to predict the future. I have sold a few shares a little too soon but who knows what will happen to them tomorrow? It is better to sell too soon and make a profit than sell too late and make a loss.
Sometimes it is the whole market that crashes and sometimes it is one or two share prices. To limit the damage, we need to diversify and have some investments not associated with the market. Then a big drop in the part of your portfolio that is invested in the stock market isn’t quite so damaging. I have an investment in peer-to-peer lending through Zopa. Surviving a crash emotionally is a different matter. People get excited about making money and upset when they lose money but you can get used to seeing it as numbers on paper or on a computer screen. There has been a lot of excitement on the forums recently about Solo Oil and the price soared from around 0.3 up to 0.8 more than doubling the value of my investment and then this week the news from NT2 wasn’t quite what some investors expected and the market makers slashed the price.
As a small investor, I obviously watch the stock market mostly to look for bargains but also to look for trends. I also watch some of the forums to see what other investors are saying. There is a lot of ramping because sentiment does influence buying and selling but not to an extent that we can influence it. I do suspect that traders in the City of London are more positive and tend to buy on days when the sun is shining! I don’t base my dealing on the weather forecast, though.
Just the way we think about finance can help us save money and make money. Finance can be about risk and a diverse approach to finance can limit that risk. Using a diverse approach when we are investing is fairly common but we can also use a diverse approach when we are buying too.
Deciding when to buy and sell on the stock market can be difficult. Some investors operate stop losses but those aren’t foolproof especially on AIM. Market makers often reduce the bid price by a few percent with the intention of triggering stop losses. It seems to be a common practice on the AIM.
The stock market will close at lunchtime today and for small investors, it will be the ending of trading for 2016. Did we have a good year? I saw my portfolio take a huge dive following the Brexit vote but as the market recovered my returns recovered too. So I’ll be ending 2016 reasonably happy with my investments.
This week we seem to be seeing a change direction for the government. Teresa May, was by any standards impressive when she made her speech to the party conference. She did, however, praise the record of the Cameron government and still seems a little out of touch. The pound crashed this week down to 1.2454 this morning. She hasn’t got a vote of confidence from the market.
The whole economic picture for the UK and maybe for the world is still uncertain. Despite the super-computers running economic models and expert economists making their predictions, the economic future looks even more unpredictable than ever. The future for the UK is even more unpredictable because of uncertainty caused by Brexit.
There is always some political risk when it comes to investing. The prehistoric tendency for one tribe to go to war with another still exists. We might have developed supercomputers and space travel but many people still have Neanderthal ideas. It makes it difficult for those of us who want a world of entertainment, peace and security. (more…)
The value of money used to be determined by the gold standard. Now we have ‘fiat’ money, value seems to be determined by confidence and sentiment. The way the global economy works seems so strange to me. The price of things we are told is determined by supply and demand. (more…)
If you want to save money then cooking your own food is an obvious money saver. When you buy takeaway food or have a meal in a cafe or restaurant, you are paying someone else to do something you could do yourself. On top of that, 20% VAT is added. The same applies to drinks like coffee. (more…)
This is the hospital where I go, a couple of times a year. I’ve had a lot of ill health and people can judge you unkindly if they can’t see what is wrong with you. So I think my greatest attribute is being non-judgemental. (more…)
This week I’ve been following the progress of the oil well at Horse Hill near Gatwick which has been flow-tested with good results. It’s producing about 450 barrels a day which is good for all the small companies involved. For Solo Oil, this is another investment to bring in revenue. (more…)
The Halifax has said that house price growth has risen to 9.7%. Who benefits from this? If you own property as a landlord, then you might benefit when you sell your property or you might be able to increase the rents but overall as a society, we are losing out as so much investment goes into the property market. (more…)
The other day I read that the majority of members of parliament are now landlords and have their money invested in the London property market. It only needs the government to fund a London building programme to burst that bubble. No wonder they’re all scared of Corbyn getting into number 10! (more…)
The all share index on the London stock market is down nearly 4% this week, which is a lot for small private investors. There are some bargains to be had but falling markets have had a devastating effect on the value of portfolios in recent months. We have to think long term and consider buying. (more…)
You can buy things with money, but it also has other uses. Money to some people is power and to others it’s security. They feel secure in the knowledge that they can afford to enjoy Christmas and still have some money in January. We all tend to feel a little more secure with money in the bank. (more…)
We can never be sure what the future will hold, but I think this will be the year when inflation starts to creep up again. Competition in many areas such as the supermarkets was fierce in 2015. The oil companies had to compete too with a glut of oil and that is seeing producers with higher costs disappearing. The world economy has seen tight money and increasing competition. (more…)
The stock market has been a little rocky as investors wonder how the general election result will affect their investments. The minimum wage might go up and put a strain on those companies that have a lot of low paid staff. However, many of those companies will benefit from increased sales. (more…)
Goals for 2015
I took this photo yesterday, it was freezing, that’s ice on the lake. You might have noticed I’ve added some EXIF info from the camera and my copyright notice to the picture. That’s one of my goals this year, to add copyright notices to pictures. (more…)
Today is Black Friday and people are fighting to get goods in major supermarkets. It seems it’s been chaos in Asda and Tesco as people go after 40 inch televisions. (more…)