The main reason that some people take opportunities when they arise, and others do not, is that some people are ready.
They have their Business Plan ready and all they need to do is take advantage of the opportunities.
Where can you find the right Business Plan?
If your Business is based in the United States - click here
If your Business is based in the U.K. - click here
For many investors, the choice of possible investments can be overwhelming. There are stocks, bonds, commodities, securities and lots of other choices. One of the most popular choices is mutual funds. These diverse and complex investments have become one of the most popular ways to invest and Americans have been taking part in mutual fund investing for many, many years.
The first ever mutual fund, known as the Massachusetts Investors Trust was born in 1924, but the idea of a group of investors pooling their money together for one big investment goes back even farther. Evidence of this style of investing can be traced back to Europe in the mid-1800s. The staff and faculty at Harvard University were the first group to do it in the United States in 1893. It was this group investment that went on to become the very first mutual fund in US history.
To say that this first mutual fund was successful would be an understatement. The fund, which started out with 200 investors and a starting point of $50,000 dollars, grew to a value of almost $400,000 in the matter of a single year. If only every investor could get that kind of return!
To compare those numbers to today, there are approximately 10,000 different mutual funds available right now, representing 83 million investors inside the United States, making mutual fund investing one of the most popular and wide-spread forms of investing in the US.
The rules of investing in mutual funds changed dramatically after the great stock market crash of 1929. The Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC) was born, and with the help of two key pieces of legislation, the Securities Act of 1933 as well as The Securities Exchange Act of 1934,the government would take a pivotal role in trying to protect potential investors from getting ripped off. The SEC requires that companies file their financial information with them, so that investors can see which companies are healthy and are ready to grow, and which companies to stay away from.
The creation of the SEC did wonders for consumer confidence in mutual funds, and by the 1960’s the mutual fund market had exploded. There were an estimated 270 different mutual funds that anyone could invest in with a value of about $48 million dollars.
As you can see, mutual fund investing has had its ups and downs, and while a well run mutual fund is likely to make money, remember, there are no sure things in the investment world and you should always be careful when trusting someone with your hard earned money.
Pooled investment funds – also known as collective investment schemes – are a way of putting sums of money from many people into a large fund spread across many investments and managed by professionals. Investing this way can be easier and less risky than buying shares in individual companies direct, and there are lots of funds to choose from.
With an investment fund, lots of people pool their money together and a professional fund manager invests the money in assets such as shares, bonds, property, cash, or a combination.
There’s a huge range of funds that invest in different things, with different strategies – high income, capital growth, income and growth and so on.
Popular types of pooled investment fund
- Unit Trusts and OEICs (open ended investment companies)
- Tracker funds (Index Funds)
- With-profits funds
- Investment trusts
- Off the shelf stocks and shares ISAs usually contain investments in funds
There are many reasons to buy a mutual fund. We narrowed down the long list to 10 reasons that mutual funds can be a good investment choice for you.
In no particular order, here's why you should consider buying mutual funds:
- Mutual Funds Offer Diversification - The beauty of a mutual fund is that you can buy a mutual fund and obtain instant access to a hundreds of individual stocks or bonds. Otherwise, in order to diversify your portfolio, you might have to buy individual securities, which exposes you to more potential volatility.
- Mutual Funds are Professionally Managed - Many investors don’t have the resources or the time to buy individual stocks. Investing in individual securities, such as stocks, not only takes resources, but a considerable amount of time. By contrast, mutual fund managers and analysts wake up each morning dedicating their professional lives to researching and analyzing current and potential holdings for their mutual fund.
- Mutual Funds Come in Many Varieties - A mutual fund comes in many types and styles. There are stock funds, bond funds, sector funds, target-date mutual funds, money market mutual funds and balanced funds. Mutual funds allow you to invest in the market whether you believe in active portfolio management (actively managed funds) or you prefer to buy a segment of the market with no interference from a manager (passive funds and index mutual funds). The availability of different types of mutual funds allows you to build a diversified portfolio at low cost and without much difficulty.
- Mutual Funds Have Low Minimums - Many mutual fund companies allow investors to get started in a mutual fund with as little as $1,000. Schwab’s mutual fund family has a minimum of $100 for many of their mutual funds.
- Systematic Investing and Withdrawals with Mutual Funds - It is simple to invest regularly in a mutual fund. Many mutual fund companies allow investors to invest as little as $50 per month directly into a mutual fund. Money can be pulled directly from a bank account and invested directly in the mutual fund. On the other hand, money can be regularly withdrawn from a mutual fund and be deposited into a bank account. There are generally no fees for this service.
- Mutual Funds Offer Automatic Reinvestment - An investor can easily and automatically have capital gains and dividends reinvested into their mutual fund without a sales load or extra fees. Unless you are looking for income (i.e. dividends separated and deposited into cash for income reasons), you'll want to choose the option to reinvest dividends and capital gains. This will take advantage of compounding interest, which essentially means that the interest, dividends and gains will go to buy more shares of your mutual funds, rather than the cash coming out and being deposited into a separate account.
- Mutual Funds Offer Transparency - Mutual fund holdings are publicly available (with some delays in reporting), which ensures that investors are getting what they pay for. Investors can also see the underlying securities (stocks, bonds, cash, or combination of those) that the mutual fund portfolio holds. All of the information you need to know, plus some you don't need for investing, will found in the mutual fund prospectus, which can easily be found on the mutual fund company's website.
- Mutual Funds Are Liquid - If you need to withdraw money from your brokerage account, you can get cash from most mutual funds within a few days. If you want to sell your mutual fund, the proceeds from the sale are available as soon as the day after you sell the mutual fund. Some mutual funds have a "settlement" period of up to three days. But this level of liquidity (quick access to your money), is much better than some investment assets, such as real estate.
- Mutual Funds Have Audited Track Records - A mutual fund company must maintain performance track records for each mutual fund and have them audited for accuracy, which ensures that investors can trust the mutual fund’s stated returns. Mutual fund companies also offer a prospectus for each fund, as well as semi-annual or annual reports. These documents provide a wealth of information about how the fund invests, the amount of assets under management, the internal fund expenses, and more.
- Safety of Investing in Mutual Funds - If a mutual fund company goes out of business, mutual fund shareholders receive an amount of cash that equals their portion of ownership in the mutual fund. Alternatively, the mutual fund’s Board of Directors might elect a new investment advisor to manage the mutual fund. However, because mutual funds have market risk can (and often do) fluctuate in value. This means that, in some cases, an investor can end up with less money than they initially invested. But this market risk is also what enables investors the opportunity to grow their wealth over time. In different words, "safety" is a relative term. If you're looking for a guarantee or safety of principal, mutual funds may not be the best choice for you.
A Great Business did not just happen - It was planned that way.