Offers You Should Accept

Schwab’s Starter Kit offer has been ongoing for a while. (Deposit $50 bucks and get fractional shares of five SP500 stocks.) This offer is only for new accounts. Fidelity has decided to match the offer, as well as make it available to existing accounts.

My thought is this. The so-called “average” American has tiny money that they could use for ‘investing’, and they have even less experience and knowledge about how to make those investments. Worse, despite there being dozens of truly excellent tutorials on how one might get started, they lack the time to find the few tutorials that might match well with their means, needs, interests, and opportunities. But if putting up $50 bucks gets them a $100, then they can make their mistakes and do their learning “on the other guy’s nickel”.

So, once again, my challenge to one and all is this. If you were to talk a friend into signing up for one of these offers, or to do so yourself, what would you buy with that $150 bucks? One stock or ETF? Five stocks or ETFs? Ten stocks or ETFs? (Both Schwab and Fidelity offer fractional share trading.) What entry rules would you use? What exit rules?

Frankly, for all my wrangles and quibbles with Quill and his methods, nothing that’s commercially available at any price beats what he has cobbled together under the rubric of Simon Says. That doesn’t mean that making disciplined, chart-based entries and exits won’t result in some losing trades, nor that the family of methods will offer fabulous wealth. But it is a means --on average and over the long haul-- to pull more money out of markets than one brings to them, and that’s better than what the competition is doing these days.

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If you buy ten stocks --as Wm O’Neil advises that investment money be divided and spent-- have you built “a diversified portfolio”, or have you just made the same bet ten times in row? Obviously, you’d want each of those bets --err, investments-- to be based on A Good Idea. But here’s where reality rears its ugly head. How many of us have even one good idea, much less ten of them? So let’s be both realistic, yet hopeful, and divide the $150 we have to work with from taking advantage of Schwab’s or Fidelity’s offer and try to find five investment themes that might be fun to explore.

What, right now, are some of the biggest, most impactful events happening in our increasingly globalized, but also increasingly polarized world? No, it isn’t the arrest of the Orange Man or the revelation that NPR is “state-affiliated media”. I’d suggest that the banking crisis is huge and that it hasn’t yet been resolved, as hasn’t inflation. De-dollarization is huge, which is spilling over into the precious metals and the cryptos. Governments everywhere are increasingly willing to fund the green energy and the climate change scams. Lastly, what will be the knock-on effect of the US losing its cultural, economic --and military-- wars with the BRICS plus? Obviously, all five are related, and all involve making the same bet, that the US is in decline. So what are five ways to express that bet?

One could could make a currency bet by going long the Euro or the Yuan or shorting the $US. One could a commodities bet by going long energy, natural resources, or ag. One could short the banking, retail, or leisure industries. One could bet that interest-rates will rise in the near term but fall in the longer term or that bond defaults will rise. Lastly, one could short our home market by going long a more favorable one.

Thanks! Sent the link to the Fidelity option to our 30-something kids. :wink:

'38Packard

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Thanks for posting these! I’m going to share the links with friends.

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It took 3 days of trying to get logged in to accept the offer. But a Starter Account for me is now opened and funded. So, the next question is, “What to do with it?”

Fidelity’s mutual funds now have zero initial purchases --compared to the bad old days of $2,500 mins, plus exit fees-- and mutual funds are so retro that I think it’d be fun to see what a small account could do with them, not that I’m not trading mutual funds in other accounts. (But that’s with bigger money.)

So that’s my plan, to figure out which of Fidelity’s 322 mutual funds might be worth making some “investments” in, meaning, longer-term holdings than the in-and-out stuff I’m doing with Rydex and Profunds. That means I need to build a Fidelity-specific chart template and some vetting procedures.

[update]
Of Fidelity’s 322 mutual funds, only the 47 sector funds and the 36 international funds merit interest. (IMHO, ‘natch.) The prospectuses for them weren’t clear about what the exchange policies were, nor if there were fees for short-term selling. The rep I phoned hadn’t fielded that question before. His guess was that short-term exchanges weren’t penalized, but that the sell-order should be scrutinized carefully before executing. So it looks like Fidos funds are as tradable as Rydex’s, Profunds’ and Direxion’s (depending on the broker).

So it looks as if my plan to model the management of a small money, investment account based on mutual funds is viable.

The sun is shining. Time to roll some miles.

So I am a long time investor in mutual funds and I have bought based on the short term performance, then reevaluate every month. My first step is to find the top 3 or 5 funds and divide my portfolio into those five. In one month I check performance and then drop the lowest performer. My son invests in fidelity and I help him pick his fund. He has been making 25% return in his pension plan at Chevron using this technique…doc

Mutual Fund Results - Mutual Funds Research | Fidelity Investments

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