Smartphone apps have made life simpler, with services ranging from online banking to flight bookings, and even holiday rental homes. Smartphone apps can also make it easier to invest, and the following are two highly useful apps that can help you to learn the stock market, before you start trading on a small scale with real money.
Stock Trainer: Virtual Trading Apps
This Android app doesn’t allow you to trade with actual money (we’ll cover that in the next one), but instead gives you virtual currency to start trading on a simulated stock market. There’s a lot of value in virtual trading, particularly if you’re a first-time investor. Stock Trainer uses live market prices, so you can track your virtual picks against real stocks and ETFs.
If you only have a basic understanding of the stock market, then this is an essential tool that will teach you about risk and how your decisions can lead to losses and gains. It will give you a better feel for how politics, market decisions, company performance, and general investor confidence can impact both day trading and longer-term stock investments.
Robinhood – Investing, No Fees
This app created by Robin Markets Inc. is designed to offer the simplest possible way for you to start investing in the stock market. It’s an intuitive application for both iOS and Android that provides live stock prices, instant trades, and a no-fee trading structure. It’s an excellent option if you are a first-time investor and want to start with a small amount of money and without a professional broker.
Robinhood is regulated by FINRA, an independent self-regulatory body with a high level of trust in the investment community.
Before You Invest
Even if you only plan to invest a small amount, it’s critical to learn the market and research the stocks that you want to buy. Past performance doesn’t guarantee success, so you’ll need to be sure that a company is in a strong financial position before you invest. Data like company revenue, operating income (which is net revenue minus expenses) and the forecasted financial results for future quarters will be important.
News, including both political and financial news, should also factor into your investment decisions. As has been seen recently with ongoing trade tensions, political policy can impact investor confidence, and therefore influence stock prices daily.
Smart phone applications and online services make it easier and more affordable to invest, but this doesn’t mean that you should ignore due diligence when it comes to making stock picks and managing your money.
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