If you’ve ever bought or sold stocks, there’s a chance you may have done so based on feelings and emotions rather than cold, hard evidence. You may want to believe you trade based on objective information, keeping an eye focused intently on your investment goals. But you’re human. You buy a stock because you saw a pundit talk about it on television. You sell a stock because it’s lost some value and you’re freaked out. You’ve probably bought or sold stocks simply because it feels good to make a transaction.
The Best News Magazines That Cover Finance, Business, Markets and the Economy. The Economist: Although not a dedicated finance magazine, this is one of my all time favorite publications. I find the articles help me gain perspective on what is going on here in the United States by framing things in a more global context. The Economist describes itself as an ”authoritative weekly newspaper focusing on international politics and business news and opinion.” This one is a must read.
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Women, Men, and Money. Yet another personal finance book with a telling subtitle: ”The Four Keys for Using Money to Nourish Your Relationship, Bankbook, and Soul.” In Women, Men, and Money Author William Devine goes beyond the practical ins and outs of personal finance and gets to the emotion and meaning behind money, ”showing you how to earn, spend, invest, negotiate, and communicate about money” in a way that will enrich your relationship with your significant other.
Strange Stuff. If investors are behaving rationally, there are certain events that should not happen. But they do. Consider, for example, some evidence that stocks will have greater returns on the last few days and first few days of the month. Or the fact that stocks have been known to show lower returns on Mondays.
How It Can Help You, If you want to become a better investor, you will want to become less human. That sounds harsh, but it will benefit you to take stock of your own biases and recognize where your own faulty thinking has hurt you in the past. Consider asking yourself tough questions, like, “Do I always think I am right?” or “Do I take credit for investment wins and blame outside factors for my losses?” Ask, “Have I ever sold a stock in anger, or bought a stock based on a simple gut feeling?” Perhaps most importantly, you must ask yourself whether you have all of the information you need to make the right investment choices. It’s impossible to know everything about a stock before buying or selling, but a good bit of research will help ensure you’re investing based on logic and objective knowledge rather than your own biases or emotions.