Invest In Yourself!

 

Hello, all!

It might be hard to believe this, but January is almost half over.  If you set any goals, objectives or resolutions for 2019, today, January 15, is a great day to take stock of your activity so far.

Whether you call them “resolutions” or some other name, the things we hope to accomplish in the coming year as the ball drops usually have one thing in common: they’re investments in ourselves.

What is interesting is that many of us who resolve to “invest in ourselves” end up doing so in pretty much every way except, well…investing.

And investing is the only way by which most of us will be able to maintain a comfortable standard of living in our old age.

Don’t get me wrong.  Adopting healthy habits – diet, exercise, quitting smoking – is of utmost importance to living a long and rewarding life.  In fact, it’s a must!

But if you don’t pay attention to your financial health by way of long-term investing, you may be physically fit at age 80, but you could be cash poor.

I don’t want to see that happen to you.  I don’t want to see that happen to anyone.

I’m hoping that you’ll take a look at the short book I wrote, which I linked to at the beginning and end of this post.  It’s called The Stock Market is For Everyone.  I called it that because I believe that.

It’s an easy read.  I made it that way because most people who write about money and finance do it in a way that is over the average person’s head.

It’s also not boring.  I talk about myself in there, and about regular people living regular lives.

I don’t discuss trendlines, or moving averages, or any other such term commonly found in books about stocks.  I talk about companies – what they do, what they’re working on, what they produce, how they’re run.

An investor should know what he or she is investing in.  A chart or a graph isn’t going to tell you that.

I’m happy to hear from people that my book has changed the way they think about investing and has inspired many of them to start doing it.

So how about it?  Today’s January 15.  No better time than the present to reaffirm your commitment to invest in yourself.

Do it today.

*  The Stock Market is For Everyone, Eric Milton’s short guide to stock market investing for beginners, is available in e-book and paperback formats.  If you like what you see on this blog, we hope you’ll take a moment to purchase and read the book, let us know what you think via a blog comment or Amazon review, and share this information with others!  Thank you. *

Sorry…We Don’t Accept Cash!

fullsizerender

The “war on cash” is very real.

I am starting to hear about more and more retailers no longer accepting cash.  In fact, some companies, such as the restaurant chain Dig Inn pictured above, are making it against their policy to accept cash as payment.

I also look at my own spending habits for example.  I have reached a point in my life where I hate using cash.  I use cash for three purchases: to do laundry in my building, to get my beard shaped at the barber, and to get taps put on my shoes.  Other than that, I never use it.  I would bet that your list of expenses you absolutely must pay in cash is similarly short.

The trend towards a cashless society is on the horizon, and banks are taking notice.

Want to invest in this trend?  If so, I think Square (NYSE: SQ) would be a great choice.

Square is the innovative merchant services company serving small to midsize businesses.  If you have made a debit or credit card purchase from a smaller vendor, signed using your finger, and had your receipt texted to you, chances are that the transaction was processed using Square.

The stock was up 44% in 2018, and that’s after being down 38% from its 52-week high.  Square is taking market share from banks with its Cash App, which allows people to transfer money to one another via their phones.  The company recently applied for a banking license.

Square represents the future of financial payments.  It’s definitely on my watch list, along with these other stocks.  It should be on yours as well!

Talk to you tomorrow.

Disclaimer/Disclosure Statement: Information in this article is not intended to be a recommendation to invest in any stock.  Rather, it is presented for readers’ education and consideration when making their own investment decisions.  The author has no position in any of the stocks mentioned in the article.

*  The Stock Market is For Everyone, Eric Milton’s short guide to stock market investing for beginners, is available in e-book and paperback formats.  If you like what you see on this blog, we hope you’ll take a moment to purchase and read the book, let us know what you think via a blog comment or Amazon review, and share this information with others!  Thank you. *

 

3 Stocks For The Risk-Averse!

If you have been thinking about investing, but are a little gun shy given the past few months, I have put together a short list of three stocks you can invest in that will enable you to sleep at night.

These companies are all large in size, and able to withstand a big market decline.  You won’t get the same growth that you can realize from investing in a high-flying growth stock.  But you will get steady income in the form of a dividend.

So, here we go:

  1. Verizon (NYSE: VZ) – One of the largest telecommunications companies in the world with a market cap of $239 billion, Verizon is as steady as any business can be.  They have great customer loyalty, and their cash flow is on par with – if not stronger than – cable companies.  They boast the most reliable service, and their subscribers number 151.8 million – more than any other company.  Verizon is investing heavily in the rollout of 5G, which is expected to be the next big thing in telecommunications.  Verizon pays a dividend of 4.15%.
  2. Home Depot (NYSE: HD) – Home Depot is the largest home improvement company in the United States, with a market cap over $200 billion.  Over the past three decades, Home Depot has been one of the best investments in history.  Unlike Macys, Bed Bath & Beyond, and Sears, Home Depot has demonstrated itself to be “Amazon-proof”.  It is one of the best run retailers in the business.
  3. Alphabet (NASDAQ: GOOGL)– Alphabet is the parent company of Google, which is one of the top three most valuable companies on earth.  Google’s business is rock-solid; they generate an obscene amount of cash.  Google owns 44% of the global advertising market which is $88 billion.  They one of the leaders in autonomous driving.  Their life science research organization, Verily, cites a mission to “make the world’s health data useful so that people enjoy healthier lives.”

Over the next five to ten years, any one of these investments should outperform the market and would be great additions to a risk-averse investor’s.

Disclaimer/Disclosure Statement: Information in this article is not intended to be a recommendation to invest in any stock.  Rather, it is presented for readers’ education and consideration when making their own investment decisions.  The author has no position in any of the stocks mentioned in the article.

*  The Stock Market is For Everyone, Eric Milton’s short guide to stock market investing for beginners, is available in e-book and paperback formats.  If you like what you see on this blog, we hope you’ll take a moment to purchase and read the book, let us know what you think via a blog comment or Amazon review, and share this information with others!  Thank you. *

Take 20% Of Your Refund And Buy A Damn Stock!

Fact: your wealth is determined by just 20% of your take-home pay.

You can earn a million dollars a year and be broke.

I know that’s hard to believe, but it’s true.  If you make $1,000,000 before taxes, bring home $600,000, and owe $2,000,000, you are essentially bankrupt.

For many of us, getting that seed money to make your first investment can be a challenge.  That’s why it’s imperative this year that you take 20 percent – just 20 percent -of your tax return and invest it.

What if you took $200 and bought any of the following stocks 10 years ago?  Here’s what that investment would be worth today:

Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL): $2,112

Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN): $4,977

Netflix (NASDAQ: NFLX): $13,400

Now, is there a possibility that you could have chosen a stock that lost money?

Absolutely.

However…the focus here is on what could go right as opposed to what could go wrong!

*  The Stock Market is For Everyone, Eric Milton’s short guide to stock market investing for beginners, is available in e-book and paperback formats.  If you like what you see on this blog, we hope you’ll take a moment to purchase and read the book, let us know what you think via a blog comment or Amazon review, and share this information with others!  Thank you. *

Why I Would Put 1% Of My Net Worth In Bitcoin…

should i buy bitcoin

Let me start by saying that I am not a bitcoin enthusiast, advocate or even a follower.  At this time I am an observer, at best.

I don’t know if bitcoin – or any other cryptocurrency – will still exist in the next ten years.

I do, however, keep my eye on the price of bitcoin at least a few times a week.

What intrigues me about bitcoin is that it is absolutely hated right now, and no one is talking about it.  History has taught me that you have to pay attention when an asset class goes from boom to bust the way cryptocurrencies have.  Sometimes the asset class makes a resurgence, like internet stocks, and sometimes it doesn’t, like telecom stocks, during the tech and telecom boom and bust.

I have no idea which way bitcoin will go.  But the fact that it has been left for dead makes it a very intriguing investment.  I do not think there will be a middle ground regarding bitcoin’s success or demise – it will either be a huge success or fade into oblivion, perhaps being replaced by something else.

Although the downside to bitcoin is zero, its upside in my opinion is unlimited.  For that reason alone I would have no problem putting no more than 1% of net worth in bitcoin.

*  The Stock Market is For Everyone, Eric Milton’s short guide to stock market investing for beginners, is available in e-book and paperback formats.  If you like what you see on this blog, we hope you’ll take a moment to purchase and read the book, let us know what you think via a blog comment or Amazon review, and share this information with others!  Thank you. *