With 2009 mercifully behind us, believers in a bounce-back 2010 are staking their hopes on the “January Effect.” The January Effect, for those new to the concept, refers to how securities prices tend to rise in January. The main characteristic of this phenomenon is a rush to buy securities before the end of the year for a lower price, speculating that the price will go up in January, and then selling for a profit.
With 2009 behind us and a new decade ahead, savvy investors would do well to study which stocks turned in the strongest performances in the last decade. Throughout the tech crash, 9/11, Hurricane Katrina and the global financial meltdown, a handful of resilient stocks not only held their own amidst adversity, but actually outperformed the entire market from 1999 to the present. Various financial publications have tallied up the winners. Today, we’ll explore how these companies maintained their high share prices throughout the 2000’s, including acquisitions, market forces and well-timed product launches.
There’s a stereotype in America that successful CEOs and entrepreneurs were born with silver spoons in their mouths. Their eye-popping fortunes were little more than a gift from luck, genetics or privilege. Given this stereotype, it’s tough to imagine people like Warren Buffett ever working “regular jobs” like the rest of us. However, you may be surprised to learn that many titans of industry got their start in very pedestrian positions that you wouldn’t suspect. Today, we look back on the first jobs of 10 wealthy CEOs and entrepreneurs.
It’s tempting to study and learn more about bull markets – the how’s and why’s of booming investment success. The investor’s goal of course is to implement what he learns into his own portfolio. Until recently, however, far less attention has been paid to bear markets. The recession has inspired more people to look for the lessons behind the wreckage, perhaps to better fortify themselves against future downturns. So today, we will turn our attention to 10 lessons any consumer or investor can absorb from the current and maddeningly long bear market.
Diamonds are one of the world’s most sought-after natural resources. Used to signify wedding vows, fuel guerrilla revolutions and awe all in their presence, diamonds have been cherished and esteemed by mankind for centuries. It’s not surprising then to learn that diamonds have been competitively traded on the world market for centuries. How then did this most lucrative of business’s actually begin?
Investing in gold and other precious metals is one of the best ways to maintain your footing in an otherwise unstable economy. But while gold, silver, platinum (and their lesser known cousins ruthenium, rhodium, palladium, osmium, and iridium) have maintained their status as solid investments, you need to be wary of unscrupulous dealers and the many scams they perpetrate on unsuspecting investors.
Since the start of the new year, many people have asked me if I am going to reduce the number of investments during the down economy. I intend to do just the opposite. I feel there has never been a better time to be investing in or starting a company than the current environment. For entrepreneurs, a downturn often represents one of the best times to start a new business. Great people are often more available, there is generally less competition from other start-ups, and vendors are often open to negotiate better prices.
Crude oil, gold and silver top the list of the world’s most popular commodities, and as a result, prominent media outlets regularly update on the rise and fall of their values. But there are quite a few other commodities that are traded in the world’s markets, sometimes in aggressive fashion, all of which are subject to the speculative demand of the market. Often with less fluctuation, but sometimes with severe price spikes, the world’s lesser-known commodities are traded daily in the same fashion as their more flashy counterparts. Read on to learn how and why some of the more ‘popular’ (relative, of course), but seemingly unusual commodities are traded.
Money is the most common medium of exchange, representing and functioning as legal tender. But how did man develop a world in which currencies are traded speculatively, where some are pegged against others, where others float – and where money can be exchanged without money being exchanged? Surely this was a gradual process, from cavemen trading saber-toothed tiger pelts to investing in weighted baskets of currencies in real time, the development of modern money contains many interesting steps along the way. The following is what we would humorously refer to as ‘the annotated history of money’.