merits an AAA+ "investment" rating |
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Richard Loth

Many months ago I recommended a number of investment Web sites that I thought were particularly useful for individual investors. At that time, I had not been introduced to, and it went unmentioned. It’s time to correct this error. My files are filled with numerous information pieces from this excellent source of free material on investing. I’ve discovered what other reputable observers of investment education – such as the Harvard Business School newsletter, the “Wall Street Journal,” “Forbes Magazine,” and the American Library Association, among others – have known for some time: deserves a triple A+ rating for the depth and breadth of education it offers to those seeking a better understanding of markets and investments.Co-founders Cory Janssen and Cory Wagner started in 1999. If I may digress, this seems to me but another example of the power of the Internet. It wasn’t until I wanted to get permission to use some of their material for a forthcoming book I’m writing that I realized that this gold mine of investment information was located just over a thousand miles to the north of us in Edmonton.In my view, what makes so special are a number of important features. The information they present is expressed in textbook style and in layman’s terms. The site’s articles and tutorials can be viewed according to investment style and level of expertise – beginners, experts, active traders, and retirement-plan participants.Once you sign up (no charge), you’ll receive a “welcome” message from that describes the content and tools on the Web site. Here’s a brief summary of what you’ll find: • Dictionary: Containing over 4,500 items, there are few, if any, items of financial jargon that aren’t explained. There’s also a “Term of the Day” newsletter (free) that allows you to build an investing vocabulary. • Articles: They have over 600 topical pieces covering these categories: investing basics, mutual funds, options & futures, retirement, active trading, stocks, bonds, personal finance, NASD investor alert, and foreign exchange.An especially useful feature of the Investopedia material is the extensive use of links and cross-references. This technique is very useful for beginners trying to understand unfamiliar subject matter.• Tutorials: Whenever a subject cannot be completely covered in an article, they’ll produce an in-depth tutorial, which can be printed as a PDF file. Topics cover investing basics, advanced and active trading techniques, and retirement planning.• Investing simulator: designed this tool for investors to experience investing on their own using a discount broker. You can experiment with using real stock exchange data for buying and selling stocks without losing (or making!) any real money.• Research: Substantial stock data is provided on individual companies.• Newsletters: offers nine free e-mail newsletters. Of most interest to individual investors would be the following: – “Investing Basics” is published weekly and explains stocks, bonds, mutual funds, etc. for the beginning investor. Every week it answers some subscriber questions. – “Term of the Day” focuses on investment terminology each weekday. – “Investopedia Advisor Insights” provides weekly insights from Investopedia co-founders, Wagner and Janssen, and contributing editor David Harper. – “The Warren Buffet Watch” is a weekly look at what Buffet and his companies are up to. – “News to Use” highlights’s new content every Wednesday. believes that “you [the investor] are the best person to look after your money. Investing is not rocket science. Anybody with the desire to learn can do so with a little time and effort. Still, many people are intimidated by investing … Whatever might be holding you back, Investopedia strives to help you through the difficulties …”Suffice it to say, I agree wholeheartedly! The Investing Wisely column is written by Richard Loth, managing principal of Mentor Investing and an independent registered investment adviser. Loth can be reached at 328-5591 or Vail, Colorado

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