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What Investing Mistakes Have You Made?

post #1 of 20
Thread Starter 
I haven't invested in the stock market in over two years now. At first, I was saving for a down payment on a house and did not want to risk it in the stock market. Then I decided a house in my part of town wasn't worth it and the stock market crashed. Then the subsequent bull market seemed too ridiculous so I didn't invest anything then.

Looking back, I could have totally screwed myself by buying in before the crash. But I also missed out on the recovery. Am I making another mistake by not buying now because the market looks like it is at a peak? Maybe the overall mistake is trying to time the market...

What mistakes have you made?
post #2 of 20
I haven't made any serious ones, but my brother and father invested in a penny stock company that made mine detectors. It was basically a sham and they both lost thousands.
post #3 of 20
Holding leveraged ETFs over time. Next time I will read the prospectus.
post #4 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by gungadin25 View Post
Looking back, I could have totally screwed myself by buying in before the crash. But I also missed out on the recovery. Am I making another mistake by not buying now because the market looks like it is at a peak? Maybe the overall mistake is trying to time the market...

What mistakes have you made?

Yeah, penny stocks aren't 'investing' any more than playing a game of 3 Card Monty is. There's a reason why those 'companies' are traded OTC, rather than held by the smart money (private equity). That said, the guys that run them are criminals, who far too often get away with it, I'm afraid.

The most common mistakes I make stem from a tendency to hold onto both my winners and losers for too long. You've got to be willing to take your profits off the table, and cut your losses when you know you're beat, because you can't fight the market.

For the OP, I think you hit the nail on the head. Trying to time the market is a major sin. Stocks are the best long term investment you can make, so long as your definition of 'long term' is 30+ years. I agree that it's a mistake to go all-in right now, for the exact reasons you mention. However, there's no harm in getting in the game if you do it gradually. If you've got 10 grand to invest, why not put in 2500 this year, 2500 the next, and so on...
post #5 of 20
Lost my ass in a nonconventional natural gas penny stock. Market tanked right when they were about to get a loan to prove up their reserves.
post #6 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by gungadin25 View Post
I haven't invested in the stock market in over two years now. At first, I was saving for a down payment on a house and did not want to risk it in the stock market. Then I decided a house in my part of town wasn't worth it and the stock market crashed. Then the subsequent bull market seemed too ridiculous so I didn't invest anything then.

Looking back, I could have totally screwed myself by buying in before the crash. But I also missed out on the recovery. Am I making another mistake by not buying now because the market looks like it is at a peak? Maybe the overall mistake is trying to time the market...

What mistakes have you made?

Yup, you can't really time the market. Just go in at a point you are happy with, and remember not to invest what you can't afford to lose.
post #7 of 20
Have some $$ in two small cap pharmas. ATM they are proving to be mistakes. But not a mistake til I sell
post #8 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by rjmaiorano View Post
Have some $$ in two small cap pharmas. ATM they are proving to be mistakes. But not a mistake til I sell

Haha, that's what I tell myself too. Unrealized gains/losses until I sell.
post #9 of 20
Buying and holding when I should have known better.. Example? I bought 3,000 shares of DYN for a buck or less back in 2001 when the energy market was melting down. I had faith in their business model, and felt pretty strongly that they would make it. It bumped up over $8, then $10, but I held, even when I knew I should have taken profits. Price today? A buck and a quarter. That's right, 5 shiny quarters per share..
post #10 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by rjmaiorano View Post
Have some $$ in two small cap pharmas. ATM they are proving to be mistakes. But not a mistake til I sell

I am in the same situation. Two of my pharmas tanked badly in the last week...others are down a bit but holding...only one is doing great, up over 100%.
post #11 of 20
I bought deep in Tom Ford shirts early, made a killing, however I see the market is saturated now, so I wiped out my portfolio.
post #12 of 20
i was trying to buy a few Dow stocks today while drunk and instead of buying 16 shares i mistyped and accidentally bought 16 billion shares i hope that didn't cause any problems for anybody
post #13 of 20
Nortel
post #14 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by HRoi View Post
i was trying to buy a few Dow stocks today while drunk and instead of buying 16 shares i mistyped and accidentally bought 16 billion shares

i hope that didn't cause any problems for anybody

Thanks H - I scooped up Phillip Morris for $2/share! Kiton shoes for everyone!
post #15 of 20
Half my money with Madoff and the other half in Lehman Brothers stock.
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