Smart investment strategies
There's no magic formula for managing your investments—but these few things come pretty close.
POINTS TO KNOW
- When it comes to your investment strategy, building your portfolio the right way is half the battle. Focus on things you can control, like asset allocation and costs.
- For most investors, once your portfolio is set, there are only a few things you need to do to stay on track.
Make sure you're doing these 3 things first
If you've already started investing but aren't sure you're doing it right, check out these tips for becoming a successful investor.
Start with your asset allocation
Protect yourself through diversification
Don't let high costs eat away your returns
Then add these 4 additional steps
Keep performance in perspective
The length of time you have until you need the money from your investments is inversely proportional to the amount of time you should spend focusing on your performance.
Monitor your risk level & rebalance
Remember how important asset allocation is? It continues to play a critical role in keeping you on track.
Make regular investments
If you're trying to increase your portfolio to meet a specific goal, making small investments consistently makes a big difference.
Tackle multiple financial goals in the right order
Most people have multiple demands on their money. We believe there's a right order in which to attack them.
Good to know!
If you're in a higher tax bracket, taxes may be a big consideration when managing your portfolio. Find out what you can do to keep them under control.
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The way your account is divided among different asset classes, including stock, bond, and short-term or "cash" investments. Also known as "asset mix."
The measure of how much an investment has paid off, also known as return.
The degree to which the value of an investment (or an entire market) fluctuates. The greater the volatility, the greater the difference between the investment's (or market's) high and low prices and the faster those fluctuations occur.
A bond represents a loan made to a corporation or government in exchange for regular interest payments. The bond issuer agrees to pay back the loan by a specific date. Bonds can be traded on the secondary market.
Usually refers to common stock, which is an investment that represents part ownership in a corporation. Each share of stock is a proportional stake in the corporation's assets and profits.
The sum total of your investments managed toward a specific goal.
Usually refers to investment risk, which is a measure of how likely it is that you could lose money in an investment. However, there are other types of risk when it comes to investing.
The profit you get from investing money. Over time, this profit is based mainly on the amount of risk associated with the investment. So, for example, less-risky investments like certificates of deposit (CDs) or savings accounts generally earn a low rate of return, and higher-risk investments like stocks generally earn a higher rate of return.