You’ve probably seen some of those amazing spreadsheets experienced investors use to keep tabs on how their portfolios are performing. Interestingly, even if you’re not familiar with Google Sheets, it’s really easy to create your own. And if you don’t quite have the spare time, you can always use my dividend tracker.
I don’t enjoy using the same old “invest only what you can afford to lose” since that brands investing with the same brush as gambling. To me, investing in the stock market is not gambling, not unless you attempt to do active trading to make a buck in quick turnarounds. Still, you should only invest what you can afford to lock away in a vault.
Penny stocks are considered by many investors to be the bargain basement of the stock market. These are the stocks that are ideally suited to those with not so much spare cash who simply wish to have a piece of the action. Sometimes they can be brilliant investments, but other times it’s a massive gamble.
Becoming a safer investor isn’t rocket science. It also won’t require years of market experience and countless online courses. I’ve rounded up some helpful pointers that will not only make you a safer investor but are what I use on a daily basis when interacting with the markets.
ETF stands for an exchange-traded fund, which essentially offers a way to invest in a wide range of shares or bonds using a single ticker and listing. An ETF usually tracks a single market, for instance, the FTSE 100 or NASDAQ. But why should you consider investing in one and do you earn dividends?
How a company determines whether you should receive a dividend is by using two dates: ex-dividend and record. You’ll need to have shares held in a company by these stated dates in order to receive a dividend payment. This is the focus of dividend investing, which is what I’m using to become financially independent.
You may have seen this term thrown about when referencing specific stocks, but what exactly is a dividend aristocrat? Simply put, a dividend aristocrat is traditionally a company in the S&P 500 index that has paid and increased its dividend payments for at least 25 consecutive years. These are the companies you should at least consider for a dividend stock-focused investment portfolio.
A stock split is a process whereby a company essentially multiplies the total number of shares. The main reason for doing so is to increase liquidity and attract new investors by lowering the share price without affecting other important stock-related metrics. Common stock split ratios include 2-for-1, 3-for-1, and 4-for-1.
Being able to tell how well a company is performing before or after investing money is incredibly important. If you plan to buy or currently own dividend-paying stocks, that’s not the only metric you need to keep tabs on. The dividend yield is a good indicator as to how good the payments are, but the payout ratio is how you can tell whether a company can actually afford the said dividends.
Choosing the best stocks to purchase and companies to invest in is a grueling process. If you’re focused on building a stream of passive income, the dividend yield is an important metric you should factor in your analysis process. But what is the dividend yield, why is it so important, and how do you calculate it?