The secret is out: How to benefit from the market


THE epicentre of financial activity for investors is the Stock Exchange. Be it in London (FTSE), New York (NYSE), Paris (DAC), Johannesburg (JSE), Sydney (ASX) or just about any country in the world  - the stock exchange is where it all happens.

On the corner of Wall and Broad streets, the site of George Washington's inauguration, the New York Stock Exchange is perhaps the most iconic of them all. The famed Wall Street bull statue standing proudly on the corner is snapped by thousands of tourists sensing the energy and importance of this place. Ironically, fewer than 24% of these people actually own any stock or invest in the stock market.

What pops out when you visit the floor of the NYSE or the London Stock Exchange is how few people seem to be working at the trading posts. This is always a bit of a let down for me. I keep hoping to see crazy traders running around with tickets in their hands like we see in the movies Wall Street or Trading Places.

But those days are long gone, replaced with electronic trading from all over the world, and that's a good thing for individual investors like you and me. Investing is more available, more accessible, more transparent, and cheaper than ever before. No need to ring up your broker anymore to buy a "lot" (100 shares) of a stock.

That's because we have access to low-cost investing like never before. We also have access from where ever we happen to be. Sitting on the beach in Mozambique - a quick buy or sell via my online broker and back to living life.

That's pretty awesome – to be able to buy hundreds or thousands of a stock, to become a part-owner (even just a fraction) of great businesses for less than a six-pack of something nicely chilled.

One way (the best, in my mind) to take advantage of it is to set up an investing plan via an online broker in an index tracking fund or Exchange Traded Fund (ETF) and commit to it for the long term. Through the highs and the lows. Get a plan and stick with it.

That's what I've been doing for well over twelve years now and what I’ve got my nieces and nephews doing. Each month they are setting aside some money to invest into businesses (as I prefer to think of it) that they plan to hold for a long time.

Not tickers. Not charts. Not trading. Not “great tips” from the hairdresser

Great Businesses + Investing + Long term.

I stick to the tried-and-true wealthy approach to regular and consistent investing, thinking of my stocks as businesses with true assets, competitive advantages, and earnings power.

I invest with the intention of owning for years - decades, even.

And that's the huge difference between Wealth Chef investing and the kind of activity conducted by so many traders, whether they are on the floor of the JSE, NYSE, FTSE, ASX or DAC;  sitting in a hedge fund office suite; trying to catch the spread on the forex market; or excessively trading a client's account in Any Town, WORLD.

Wealth Chefs are business-oriented, long-term investors. We know the value of being owners of great companies and sharing in the value.

It's worked well for me and it can work for you, too.

* This guest post is from Ann Wilson, CEO of The Wealth Chef and a self-made millionaire "on a mission to empower others to become free from financial enslavement and discover that money management doesn't have to be dull, dry or confusing".

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