There are so many website today containing stock market content, it’s easy to get lost in a sea of information. It’s time to cut through the clutter and find out what really makes the live stock market work and the driving forces in play.
The first thing you have to realize about the stock market content is that it’s driven largely by the actions of uneducated investors. For instance, many people often times will purchase a stock based merely on speculation that it is about to rise, or that oil prices are going up or down, etc.
Often times, these factors really have nothing to do with the companies overall profitability, and more to do with the economy as a whole. Unfortunately, uneducated investors will usually make their investment decisions based on how they perceive the economy to be doing, and not their particular company.
This is the primary reason for the market crash in 1929 and it’s the reason for every market downturn since. When uneducated investors get into the market, they have a tendency to act as a ‘herd’.
In other words, when the financial analysts are saying to buy, they all act as one and often times buy, driving the stock market prices up even if a company isn’t doing particular well financially. Likewise, everybody could sell in a chain reaction to some news pertaining to the economy as a whole that really doesn’t have anything to do with the particular company they are holding.
In both scenarios, the stock market is either severely over or under-valuing a particular company, with little regard to its’ actual profitability. This is the nuts and bolts of how the market works.
Keep in mind: short term, the stock market tends to severely over or undervalue a company because of a number of factors, often many of which have nothing to do with the company: however, long term it always value the company according to it’s earnings and actual profitably.
Think about the dot.com craze and the 1929 stock market crash. This was again a situation where many analysts were telling people to buy, and like a herd, they did.
Therefore, companies were selling for astronomically high prices even though there was no profitability behind it. When people finally realized were no profits behind the madness, the dot.com businesses came crashing down.
So what’s the lesson in all this? Don’t follow the crowd. Instead, take the time to educate yourself on how to read a companies’ financial statements, and determine how profitable that particular company is.
Only once you’ve determined this and made sure a company is a least reasonably profitable should you even consider investing with that company. The most important factors to read up on for the company in question is their profit margin, net profits, debt levels (obviously the lower the better), and probably most importantly, how long they have been turning a profit for.
Very simply, if a company has only been making money for the past two or three years, they probably are not a great company to invest with, because they haven’t proven they can be profitable for the long term. Try to find companies that have exhibited good profit levels for at least 10 years, and preferably longer.
Finally, the best places to find a stock market ticker and information is probably on the internet. You can get up to the minute stock information online, and it’s becoming increasingly easy to invest your money online as well. This, in a nutshell, describes the stock market content and how you need to direct your investing decisions.