Good to Know

Try a stock market simulator before investing real money

One way to enter the world of investing without taking risk is to use a stock simulator. Using an online trading account with virtual dollars won’t put your real money at risk. You’ll also be able to determine how you would react if this really were your money that you gained or lost.

“That can be really helpful because it can help people overcome the belief that they’re smarter than the market,” Keady says. “That they can always pick the best stocks, always buy and sell in the market at the right time.”

Asking yourself why you’re investing can help determine if investing in stocks is for you.

“If their thought is that they’re going to somehow outperform the market, pick all the best stocks, maybe it’s a good idea to try some type of simulator or watch some stocks and see if you could actually do it,” Keady says. “Then if you’re more serious about investing over time, then I think you’re much better off – almost all of us, including myself – to have a diversified portfolio such as provided by mutual funds or exchange traded funds.”

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