This is an updated list of some of our favorite investing tools and resources. Take note that these are resources that we at INVESTOR IN THE FAMILY have found helpful. As with all things in life, none of these resources are perfect, all have their flaws, but we hope you will be able to benefit from them all the same.
Motif Investing – A truly unique and innovative approach to investing. Motif allows investors to build their own “funds.” This essentially means that you can buy a wider variety of stock for far less expense and effort than any other investing platform. I think this is a great platform, particularly for someone who wants low maintenance investing.
Fidelity Investing – Fidelity is a staple platform that has been around for years. They have a quality user interface, helpful support staff, and reasonable costs at $7.95/trade. Fidelity also offers a robust amount of resources to help in investing education and research.
TradeKing – TradeKing is a great platform as well. The user interface is very simple to use and the costs are about as cheap as you will find. TradeKing may not have the same breadth of resource support as Fidelity, but they only charge $4.95/trade.
Lending Club – Lending Club offers a unique way to get returns on your money through peer-to-peer lending. The idea is that they pool money and loan requests. This gives you the opportunity to diversify your money across as many as 100 or more loans. This way you can diversify risk across a spectrum of low risk/lower reward loans to higher risk/high reward loans. According to Lending Club, annual returns of 7% on a conservative loan portfolio can be expected.
Scutify – There are several websites and social media options for investors, but Scutify is my favorite. It is difficult to find a quality investing community where you can get your questions answered along with some really great content. Scutify is that place.
Value Stock Guide – This was the first paid service I ever signed on for and possibly the best. Shailesh Kumar is the man behind VSG and he has proven himself a disciplined value stock investor. Since inception in 2010, the S&P 500 has returned 129% and the VSG portfolio has returned 221%. That’s a really big deal.
Cody Willard – Cody is one of the first investing “mentors” that I found years ago and I have enjoyed staying connected to him ever since. He is a contrarian investor that focuses on technology investments. He prides himself in identifying new “revolutionary” technology trends and investing in them early.
Seeking Alpha – SA is probably the largest and most popular investment blog out there. That is a good thing and a bad thing. It is great because there is a lot of high quality research and information there. It is a bad thing in that there is often a lot of low quality research and information that you have to sort through in order to find the good stuff. You can visit my profile to see who I follow as a means of getting started and acquainted on SA.
The Intelligent Investor – According to Warren Buffett, this is “By far the best book on investing ever written.” Not a bad endorsement. This is considered the classic text on investing. It is an older book and many of the examples are old and “outdated.” The greatness of the book is that even though it is aged, the content is just as valuable today as when it was written. Chapters 8 and 20 are especially noteworthy.
Value Investing: From Graham to Buffett and Beyond – This book gets into a lot of the nuts and bolts of valuing a business and uses thorough examples along the way. A helpful source for being able to better identify and evaluate companies that are on “sale.”
The Essays of Warren Buffett: Lessons for Corporate America – A great collection of the business and investing wisdom of Warren Buffett. According to Buffett: “Larry Cunningham has done a great job collating our philosophy. First class.”
The One-Page Financial Plan – Author Carl Richards does a quality job of walking readers through a genuinely simple and easy to understand path for creating a personal financial plan.
Zero to One: Notes on Startups, or How to Build the Future – This is a book primarily written for entrepreneurs, in that sense it is a counter-intuitive book selection for investors. That said, as investors, the better we can thing as business owners, the better we can identify value. This book is helpful for those who want to better identify the marks of a business poised for strong growth over time.
The Economist – One of the best weekly news magazines available. The magazine is based in England and has a thoroughly global coverage of events. Articles are both informative and instructive.
FREE CREDIT SCORES/REPORTS
Quizzle – A helpful, free credit resource that offers a free credit score and report from Equifax every six months.
Disclaimer: This article is for information purposes only. There are risks involved with investing including loss of principal. All readers must be responsible for and make their own investing decisions. Each reader bears the full responsibility for any decision to buy, sell, or hold any securities, precious metals, real estate, or other asset class as well as any decision regarding the starting or running of a business. Nothing in this newsletter is to be considered investment advice, a formal recommendation, or solicitation to buy or sell any security. Investor in the Family LLC makes no explicit or implicit guarantee with respect to performance or the outcome of any investment or projections made. There is no guarantee that the goals of the strategies discussed by Investor in the Family LLC will be met. Investor in the Family LLC may receive payment for promoting some products found in this article. Even so, Investor in the Family LLC aims to promote products that it has tested and believes will add value to readers. Please see full Disclaimer.