How to Start Investing in Stocks in College

Interested in making money while attending the University of Cincinnati? There are a variety of ways you can earn income while you’re hitting the books, one of them being stock investments. Investing in stocks can be profitable when done strategically. However, coming up with that strategy is another story. Unless you’re a kid prodigy, you likely know nothing about the stock exchange and how to invest. But don’t worry – here are a few tips to get you started in the right direction.

Hit the Books

You’re already used to studying, so your mind is on absorption mode. Use this to your advantage by reading all you can about investing. This will help open your mind to the concept and make it less confusing for you down the road. Of course, you don’t want to wear yourself out with every single book on investing you can find. You only need to focus on those that give you tips for analyzing stocks, mutual funs and bonds. If they teach you how to formulate a winning strategy – even better.

Pay Off Whatever Debts You Owe

You want to free up as much money as possible, so investing won’t put a larger hole in your pocket. If you have a credit card balance of $1,000 that has 15 percent interest accruing, paying that off will give you a 15 percent return, which is $150 (which would have otherwise gone to your monthly payment, if you hadn’t paid it off. But if the interest rate is around 1 percent or 3 percent, you would be better off investing rather than retiring the debt.

Find a Reputable Brokerage

Once you’re ready to start investing, search around for a brokerage, so you can open up an account to begin investing. There are two ways to go about this – opening up an online account with a discount broker or using a traditional broker. With the online account, you’re executing the trades yourself using a computerized system. The traditional brokers offer one-on-one advice and a variety of other useful services.

In most cases, the newbies choose the discount brokerages. That’s because traditional brokers normally ask for a large amount of money upfront. Plus, they charge fees that are much higher. Online brokerages allow you to start trading with a small investment and the fees are nominal. You’re only charged per buy and sell you make.

Diversify Your Portfolio

You don’t want to put all of your eggs in one basket, as they say, so make sure to diversify the types of investments you make. Avoid going all in on one or two positions. You should invest in a wide range of assets and markets to keep the risk low.

Start Investing Sooner Rather than Later

Time is on your side as a young student attending college. This means you have ample time to learn the ropes of the investment world. If you can pick yourself back up after you fall and stay motivated, you can eventually learn what it takes to invest profitably.

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