5 Common Types of Investments

Common Types of Investments real

“Investing” never sounds like a whole lot of fun. For many of us ladies who haven’t dabbled much in financial markets: you hear the term, you picture dizzying screens full of charts, numbers, and red and green arrows, and you move along with your life.

But the truth is if you have a little bit of spare income it’s wise to invest if at all possible. I won’t get into a lengthy lecture about it, but let’s just say the longer your money’s invested, the more opportunity it has to grow.

The interesting part isn’t deciding whether or not to invest. It’s finding a type of investment that works for your lifestyle and doesn’t bore you into a coma!

5 Common Types of Investments

So here let’s talk about a few common ways to invest, and why they may or may not work for you…

1. Stock Market Investing (Long-Term)

This is what you probably think of when you hear the term “investing.” You buy stock in companies, ideally putting together a diversified portfolio of assets, and then you pretty much let it sit there for a while in the hopes that those assets gain value.

That’s not to say it’s a one-stop shopping experience. You’ll probably want to check in on things now and then. But the general idea is to ignore minor fluctuations and hope to make money over the long term as it’s often the most boring investments that make money.

2. Stock Market Trading (Day-to-Day)

Think of long-term market investment like going to the zoo. You take your time, patiently watching animals all day in the hopes that one of them will do something interesting.

You might wait around for hours while nothing happens but then an ape does sign language right before closing time and it’s like your Apple stock ended the year up 15 points.

Day trading in the market is the safari version. You’re diving head-on into the wild to seek out interesting goings on instead of just waiting for them.

It’s a lot more exciting and a lot more dangerous. In other words, day trading is not for the faint of heart!

If you’re committing to investing this way, you’re pretty much making the investment a full-time job, as day traders try to capitalise on the smaller fluctuations in stock prices from hour to hour.

3. Alternative Market Exploration

“Exploration” makes it sound fun, at least. And really this is probably the most enjoyable sort of investing opportunity out there, simply because it doesn’t apply to one boring or numbers-based concept.

An alternative investment is anything outside of a typical financial market. Maybe it means buying up real estate, or even art or antiques. In some cases it might even mean peer-to-peer lending, which is one of the fastest growing markets in the UK.

Whatever the specific venture may be, this is always an exciting route to take as it means trying to help your money grow away from the dizzying charts and numbers of the stock market.

4. Forex Trading

Forex trading, also known as currency trading, is basically the buying and selling of currency “pairs” (such as the Euro/U.S. Dollar pairing) to grow your wealth.

For instance, you might buy the Dollar when it’s low relative to the Euro, but if its value increases you can then sell what you bought back for a greater quantity of Euros.

That alone is pretty exciting relative to boring old regular investments, but there’s more to this market that can make it appealing to a lot of people.

There are some pretty nice advantages, such as the fact that forex trading occurs 24/7 and only eight currency pairs represent 72% of forex volume. Compare that to thousands of stocks to sift through.

5. Mutual Fund Participation

Most of us are all about mutual funds because guess what: you don’t have to lift a finger—almost literally!

A mutual fund is an existing stock portfolio run by an expert that you can buy into to (hopefully) ride the gains until you decide to pull your money out.

Getting back to the zoo vs. safari example, this is like being teleported to the zoo only when the gorillas are doing sign language.

You waste no time and effort, but you still see the fun stuff. Believe me, I get it. Investing isn’t for everybody, and talking about investing is for even fewer people.

It’s just not a whole lot of fun unless you happen to have a passion for finance. But making money off your savings… well, that is fun, so it never hurts to do some thinking about what sort of investment might do the trick for you!

Over to You

Have you ever dabbled into any of these investments? Share your experience with us below, we’d love to hear from you.



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  1. I haven’t really invested any money. This is something I am keen to learn.

  2. I’ve dabbled in all of them after I decided that I’ll learn about investing couple of years back. Have to say that it is ‘hourses for courses’ with most of these. For example, the stock market is very volatile during the last several years and I don’t believe it will change (another conversation, really). I have a potfolion of stocks and shares that consists only of companies that are recomemded on Motley Fool’s Rule Breaker portfolio – e.g. companies that meet six conditions one of which is that they are picked early on. This portfolio is doing well (I do make a seconday selection and research carefully). I’ve tried FX and with this one really needs to know what they aree doing – for myself I know that I don’t want to put my effort there because anything that can be automated I find un-exiting.

    My latest venture is in buying businesses; I recently bought a 50% share in an MOT and car service garage. I reckon, if one wants to make money they should invest in businesses. If one wishes to keep their money at an interest slightly higher than a savings account, they should have an ISA with a good provider (I like Nutmeg).

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