Today’s investors have so many tools and resources they need to achieve financial gain. But in the age of information, knowing where to look is a critical step. Reliable information can prevent investors from making costly mistakes, like allowing emotions to take over.
To help you make educated investment decisions, these are five types of resources you need to constantly learn from:
Financial knowledge publications & sites
Finance newspapers and magazines — such as The Wall Street Journal, The Economist, and the Financial Times to name a few — are troves of business and market information. They also have websites setup for faster news reporting, as well as social media platforms like Twitter for bite-sized updates.
If you’re serious about investing for your future, subscribing to a trusted publication or site will pay off. These resources consolidate information from different markets, industries, governments, and experts so you don’t have to do too much digging on your own. You can read news articles, in-depth analyses, or op-ed pieces on finance and investment to get a better sense of where markets are headed.
If you want more technical information, you also need to follow relevant industry news. For instance, stock market investors need to look at stock indices (NASDAQ Composite, Dow Jones Industrial Average, and S&P 500 Index). Another example is checking oil price charts that display the price movements of oil if you’re interested in trading oil futures. It is one of the most important commodities in the world, and it is currently affected by declining global demand due to the ongoing pandemic.
Knowing these details will allow traders to make comparisons and calculations for market performance. You can also look at company reporting if you want to do more in-depth research on specific stocks and other similar investments. These resources also often contain more specific reports on each industry or company, allowing investors to form unbiased opinions for themselves.
It might not be the first place people look at, but government reports are also very useful. That’s because macroeconomic factors heavily impact financial markets. For instance, reading reports from the Bureau of Labor Statistics can be practical at the time of a recession for forex traders. Indeed, one of the factors that affects forex rates is national employment figures. If the US has high employment figures, the USD can rise in value and put certain investors in a favorable position over others.
Another example is to look at GDP reports for stock or ETF investors. A rise in GDP is generally a good economic indicator for investors to put their confidence in stocks and other instruments.
Looking at historical performance is commonly known as technical analysis. Analysts look at how investments performed in the past under certain conditions to predict trends for the future. Technical analysis also involves a bit of psychology when evaluating and predicting investor behavior.
For instance, real estate prices tend to decline in a recession because there’s not enough competition between home buyers and investors. That’s an advantage for buyers, but a major disadvantage for property sellers. Understanding historical performance can lead to more accurate market predictions, and thus, better investment decisions.
Investment platforms were designed for a reason: They make investing convenient and accessible for everyone. They also provide the information you need to minimize risk, so make sure to poke around and get to know your platform.
Investing doesn’t have to mean making blind gambles — information is power. With your assets on the line, you need to make financial decisions that are relevant, well-informed, and timely.
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