May 23rd, 2006

lil brudder

Spacefem's Road to Financial Adulthood

A few months ago, I set a goal for myself... get into the stock market by my birthday. No mutual funds or money market accounts, oh no, I wanted to be one of those cool financial know it alls who memorize ticker symbols and analyze market trends to predict how entire sectors are doing. I want to be smart and "diversified" and, of course, filthy rich.

Saturday was my birthday so I didn't really make the cut... the check I put into my scottrade account didn't go through until yesterday, but when it did I was thrilled. I e-mailed a guy at work who's all into this, like, "See? I'm not all talk! Here are the symbols I'll buy this week, they're diverse, and I picked some more in case those look bad, I'll be awesome!"

He e-mailed back and said that the markets had really dropped last week and were still going down, and I should hold off on my ambition "until the hemorraging stops". curse it all.

I went home and he was right, things weren't good. But one of my amazing picks had seen an upward trend at the end of an otherwise craptacular day... Leggett & Platt, a Missouri company with employees from my college, in a good stable sector, and on the Domini 400 Social Index for recent efforts to reduce emissions and increase use of environmentally-friendly paints and manufacturing processes. What's not to love?

So I decided to throw all caution to the wind and buy 10 shares... not all my money or anything, just a little bit to get started. It was fantastic! I was in! I checked it around 3pm and it was up... obviously, I'd made a brilliant choice!

But the last two hours that the market was open, it all sort of went to crap, and my special first stock finished down 12 cents.

Okay, so no stock-buying tonight, I'm going to hold on and see if my one ever gets to be okay again. I think it will. I've heard that gamblers have ups and downs, but everything generally goes down, but stock market traders have ups and downs and everything generally goes up, so it's like that. I'm not out to make millions, really if I do better than the 2% savings account interest rate that the money I took out was getting, I'll be happy. And have fun, right? And learn a little something new.