Investing in stocks and shares involves buying and selling securities with the goal of generating a return on your investment. In recent times, online brokers have proliferated, making it much easier for retail investors to enter the world of buying and trading stocks. Before you begin, it is important to remember that all forms of investing come with risks, and you need to understand the risks and have a long-term investment plan in place.
Some of the crucial first steps to investing involve opening a brokerage account. Today, there are many online brokerage firms that offer trading platforms and resources to help you buy and sell stocks and shares. As a new trader, you should be prepared to research companies to understand their financial health, industry trends, and potential for growth. To do this, you can look at financial statements, news articles, and industry reports to gather information.
Next, you will need to develop an investment strategy that aligns with your financial goals and risk tolerance. This may involve diversifying your portfolio with a mix of stocks, shares and other financial instruments. After that, you are ready to place your trades and monitor your investments.
In this article, we will tell you how to invest in the shares of Apple Inc, one of the top stocks in the world. Apple is an American technology giant that is, by recent performance, the largest technology company by revenue and market capitalization. It is one of the big five American information technology companies, alongside Alphabet, Amazon, Meta and Microsoft.
Find A Good Broker
The first step of any investment journey is to find a good broker. To achieve this, you must do your research to understand the different types of brokers available and the services they offer. You can read reviews and compare fees and commissions to find a broker that fits your needs and budget.
Make sure the broker you choose is regulated by a reputable watchdog in the location in which they operate. There are many tier-1 regulators in the world. For US-based stock brokers, check that they are registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). For UK-based stock brokers, they should be regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). This can help ensure that they are operating within the law and have the necessary credentials to provide financial services.
There are many ways to compare brokers, but fees should never be far from your consideration. Look for brokers that offer transparent pricing and low fees, and be sure to understand any additional costs, such as account maintenance fees and inactivity fees.
Next, seek out a good trading platform. A good broker should have a user-friendly trading platform that allows you to easily buy and sell stocks. As your skills develop, you should be able to use more of the broker’s advanced tools and features. Look for brokers that offer mobile apps and other tools that make it easy to monitor your investments.
It is always important to find a broker with whom you feel comfortable working and that offers the services and support you need to make informed investment decisions. After all, retail traders spend a lot of time on their broker’s apps and platforms, so you should at least enjoy the experience.
Decide How Much You Want to Invest
When determining how much to invest in share trading, it is important to consider several factors. One of the most important is related to your investment goals. Is your aim to make explosive short-term gains or do you have a long-term investment target? Your goals will influence how much you invest and the types of stocks you choose.
Your risk tolerance is the level of risk you are comfortable taking with your investments. Some investors are comfortable with high-risk investments, while others prefer lower-risk options. Determine your risk tolerance and invest accordingly. As a newcomer, you may be constrained by factors like the amount of capital you have and even with how much leverage your broker allows you to invest. These factors may reign in your enthusiasm in the early stage.
Deciding how much you can invest is a decision that can never ignore your available funds. How much can you afford to lose? Another factor for which to account is market conditions. The prevailing market conditions can influence your investment decisions. In a bear market, such as the last part of 2022 and into 2023, it would have been a good idea to invest less or to focus on safe stocks that are less affected by economic downturns.
There is no one-size-fits-all answer to how much you should invest in share trading. Your investment decisions will depend on your personal goals, risk tolerance, and financial situation. It is important to do your research and invest with the intention to be in it for the long haul.
Next, you should be ready to deposit money into your account. If you already have a brokerage account, you can proceed immediately to this step. If this is your first time, opening an account is normally a simple process that can be completed with little fuss if you have all your documents in order.
Your broker will inform you of the deposit options available. Some common ways to deposit money include bank transfer, debit or credit card, electronic wallets, and wire transfer. When choosing a deposit method, consider the fees, processing times, and security measures in place, which all differ by broker. You may also want to check if the brokerage offers any incentives, such as bonuses or free trades, for certain deposit methods.
Decide If You Want to Go Short or Long
The decision to go long or short when share trading depends on your investment strategy, risk tolerance, and market conditions. A premium stock, such as Apple, is one of the most heavily traded names around. This means the share price is always responding not only to the company’s performance and the performance of tech stocks in general, but also to the actions of the hundreds of thousands of active daily traders who may be pushing the stock toward its support or resistance levels. Here are some things to consider:
When you go long, this means you buy shares with the expectation their value will increase over time. This is a common strategy for long-term investors who believe in the growth potential of the underlying company or industry. Going long allows investors to benefit from dividends and capital gains over time. Apple shares are a good candidate for this approach, as the company continues to reward long-term investors, who have held shares for many years.
When considering going long, investors should research the company's financial health, market position, and growth prospects. They should also consider the overall market conditions and any potential risks or uncertainties that could impact the company's performance.
This investment method entails selling shares with the expectation that their value will decrease at a point in time, usually sooner rather than later. This is a strategy used by traders who want to profit from a decline in the market or a specific stock. Short selling involves borrowing shares from a broker and selling them on the open market, with the goal of buying them back at a lower price to return to the broker. A premium stock, like Apple, is not immune to being shorted if investors have information of oncoming company headwinds that may affect its stock price.
Short selling is a higher-risk strategy that can lead to significant losses if the market moves against the trader. It requires a thorough understanding of the market and the ability to analyze and predict trends.
When considering going short, investors should be aware of the risks involved and should carefully research the underlying company or industry. They should also have a well-defined exit strategy to limit potential losses.
Open A Position by Buying Apple Shares
Assuming your brokerage account is funded, opening a position with Apple shares should be simple. The main thing to do is determine your position size based on your available capital and risk tolerance. This will typically involve setting a stop-loss order to limit potential losses.
Next, you should place the trade on your broker's trading platform. This will involve specifying the number of shares you want to buy and setting a limit or market order. After this, you can monitor the trade to adjust your position as needed. This may involve setting profit targets or trailing stops, depending on your trading strategy.
What Is the Difference Between CFD Brokers and Regular Brokers?
Regular share trading and contracts for difference (CFD) share trading are two different ways to invest in financial markets. Here are some key differences between the two:
Ownership: When you buy shares, you are purchasing ownership in a company, which gives you the right to vote on important decisions and receive a portion of the company's profits through dividends. With CFDs, you don't own the underlying asset, but instead you are speculating on the future price movements of the asset.
Fees: CFD trading typically involves lower fees and commissions than share trading, although this can vary by broker. However, CFDs may also have financing costs, which are fees charged for holding a position overnight.
Leverage: CFDs allow you to trade with leverage, which means you can trade a larger position than your account balance would normally allow. This can supersize your profits, but it can also supersize your losses. With share trading, you can only trade with the amount of money you have available in your account.
Short selling: CFDs allow you to go short (sell) as well as long (buy) on a market, which means you can profit from falling prices. Share trading typically only allows you to buy shares, although you can sell them later if you expect the price to fall.
Risks: Both CFD trading and share trading come with risks, but CFDs are generally considered to be riskier due to their leverage and the fact that they are not regulated to the same extent as share trading. CFDs are complex financial products that require a thorough understanding of market dynamics and risk management techniques.
Choosing between CFD trading and share trading will depend on your investment goals and experience level. If you are new to investing or prefer a more conservative approach, share trading may be a better option. If you are comfortable with risk and are looking for potentially higher returns, CFDs may be worth considering.
Should You Hold Shares Long Term or Short Term?
This decision depends on your investment goals and strategy. Holding shares for the long-term (position trading) generally involves buying and holding onto them for a period of years, with the expectation that their value will appreciate over time. This strategy can be less risky than short-term investing, as it allows investors to ride out short-term market fluctuations and benefit from compounding returns over time. Long-term investors may also benefit from dividends paid by the company, which can provide a steady source of income.
Short-term investing, on the other hand, involves buying and selling shares over a period of days, weeks, or months (scalping, day trading, and swing trading) with the goal of making a profit on short-term market movements. This strategy can be riskier than long-term investing, as it requires a higher level of skill and market knowledge. Short-term investors are often subject to higher trading fees and taxes, as well as the potential for capital gains taxes if they sell shares for a profit. Whether to hold onto shares for the long term or short term depends on your strategy.
What Are the Two Kinds of Profit You Can Make?
In share trading, there are two main ways investors can make profits: price appreciation and dividends.
When you buy a share of a company, you are really buying a small ownership stake in that company. If the company performs well and its earnings grow, the value of its shares can increase as well. When you sell the shares at a higher price than you bought them, you can make a profit. For context, Apple shares in 2004 cost roughly $1 each. Today a share is worth $152, down from the stock’s all-time high of $180 in 2022.
So, if you bought 100 Apple shares when they cost $1 per share, and the share price later increased to $150 per share as it has done, you could sell the shares for $15,000 and make a profit of $14,900 (not including any trading fees or taxes).
Some companies may choose to distribute a portion of their profits to shareholders in the form of dividends. Dividends are typically paid out quarterly or annually, and the amount of the dividend is determined by the company's board of directors. For example, if you own 100 shares of a company that pays an annual dividend of $1 per share, you will receive $100 in dividends each year (100 shares x $1 dividend per share). You can choose to reinvest the dividends by buying more shares of the company, or you can pocket the cash.
Will the Share Price Go Up or Down?
Big tech stocks have been hit hard recently, with some reporting quarterly losses and massive layoffs. Although Apple reported record quarterly revenue of $90.1 billion for the last quarter of 2022, an 8% year-on-year increase, future gains are not guaranteed. Indeed, the company’s financial results for the first quarter of 2023 revealed quarterly revenue of $117.2 billion, down 5% year over year.
Is there a way traders can navigate this uncertainty and even foretell the future of a stock? In terms of telling the future, the answer is no, but investors can make informed guesses through detailed analysis. Technical analysis and fundamental analysis are two different approaches to analyzing stocks and predicting their price movements in share trading.
Technical analysis focuses on analyzing charts and other technical data to identify patterns and trends in stock-price movements. Technical analysts use various tools and indicators, such as Moving Averages, Moving Average Convergence Divergence (MACD), Relative Strength Index (RSI) and trend lines to identify potential entry and exit points in the market. Technical analysts believe that historical price and volume data can provide insights into future price movements, and that market trends and patterns tend to repeat over time.
Fundamental analysis: This approach focuses on analyzing a company's financial and economic fundamentals to determine its intrinsic value and potential for future growth. Fundamental analysts consider factors, such as a company's earnings, revenue, assets, liabilities and management, to evaluate its financial health and growth prospects. A stock like Apple is much easier to analyze this way than a small, regional manufacturing company.
Fundamental analysts believe that a company's intrinsic value drives its stock price over the long term, and that market prices tend to hover around a company's true value over time.
The Bottom Line
The rise of online brokers has made it easy and convenient for retail investors to buy and sell stocks online. Online brokers offer easy-to-use trading platforms that allow investors to place trades from anywhere, at any time, using their computer or mobile device.
Online brokers typically charge lower fees and commissions than do traditional full-service stock brokers, making it more affordable for retail investors to invest in stocks. This has opened investing to a wider audience and has made it more accessible to those who may not have had the financial means to invest in the past.
In terms of information and research, the Internet has made it easy for investors to access troves of advice from expert companies like Arincen. There are numerous online resources available, including financial news Websites, investment blogs, and social trading groups, which provide investors with information and advice. With all these resources available, buying stocks of Apple, or any other company for that matter, should no longer be the challenge it once was.
What are stocks?
Stocks, also known as shares or equity, represent ownership in a publicly traded company. When you purchase a stock, you are buying a small piece of ownership in that company. In return, the company may offer you the opportunity to receive a share of their profits through dividends, or you may make a profit by selling the stock at a higher price than you paid for it.
How do stocks work?
Stocks work by allowing investors to buy shares of ownership in a publicly traded company, and as the company grows and becomes more profitable, the value of those shares can increase. When a company goes public, it issues a certain number of shares that are available for purchase by investors. The price of the stock is determined by the supply and demand for those shares, and the stock price can fluctuate based on a variety of factors, such as the company's financial performance, industry trends, and global economic conditions.
What is the stock market?
The stock market is a collection of exchanges and markets where publicly traded companies' shares are bought and sold. The stock market provides a platform for companies to raise capital by issuing stocks and for investors to buy and sell stocks, providing a way for them to potentially earn a return on their investment.
Common stock exchanges include the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE), NASDAQ, CAC40, Hang Seng Index, and the FTSE100 Index. Buyers and sellers come together to trade shares in these transparent and regulated markets. Investors can buy and sell stocks through brokerage firms, online trading platforms, or financial advisors.
What is the difference between stocks and bonds?
Stocks and bonds are two different types of investment instruments that can be used to invest in a company or government entity. Stocks, also known as equities, represent ownership in a company. When you purchase a stock, you own a small piece of that company and have the potential to benefit from its growth and earnings. Bonds, on the other hand, represent debt issued by a company or government entity. When you purchase a bond, you are lending money to the issuer and, in return, the issuer agrees to pay you interest over a set period and to return the principal amount of the bond at the end of the bond's term.
How do I buy stocks?
You can buy stocks through a brokerage firm, either online or in person. To buy stocks, you will need to have a brokerage account with a brokerage firm. You can open an account with a discount or full-service brokerage firm. Many brokerage firms have minimum account balances or fees, so make sure to do your research to find a brokerage that meets your needs. Once you have opened a brokerage account, you can choose the stocks you want to buy.
How do I evaluate a stock's potential for growth?
There are several factors to consider when evaluating a stock's potential for growth. One of the most important factors to consider is the company's financial performance, including revenue growth, earnings and profitability. You can look at the company's financial statements, such as its income statement, balance sheet and cash-flow statement, to get a sense of its financial health.
It is also important to consider the industry in which the company operates, and any broader economic or social trends that may impact the industry's growth potential. The competitive landscape is also important; you will need to evaluate the competition in the company's industry and the company's competitive advantage. Many investors also believe the quality of the company's management team can also play a role in its potential for growth. Look for a strong, experienced management team with a clear strategy for growth.
What are the risks of investing in stocks?
All financial investments come with risks. Investing in stocks can come with several pitfalls, such as volatility; prices can fluctuate up and down over short periods of time, making it difficult to predict how a stock's value will change. Company performance is also a risk. Investing in individual stocks means that your returns are tied to the performance of the company. If the company performs poorly, the value of its stock can decline, potentially leading to losses.
The stock market can also be impacted by broader economic conditions, such as recessions, interest rate changes, and geopolitical events. Liquidity is also a factor. Some stocks can be illiquid, meaning that it may be difficult to buy or sell them at certain times or at a fair price. And, timing is vital. Trying to time the market and buy and sell stocks based on short-term trends or fluctuations can be risky and may not lead to optimal returns over the long term.
What are some common stock market myths and misconceptions?
There are many myths and misconceptions surrounding the stock market. Some common ones include people thinking the stock market is a get-rich-quick scheme. The stock market is not an easy way to make quick money. Investing in the stock market requires patience, discipline, and a long-term approach to see meaningful returns.
Another myth is that you must be an expert to invest. While it is certainly helpful to have a basic understanding of investing, you don't need to be an expert to invest in the stock market. There are many resources available to help you learn the basics, and many investment platforms have easy-to-use interfaces that make it simple to invest in stocks.
Some people believe investing is only for the wealthy when anyone can invest in the stock market. Another common misconception is that you should buy low and sell high. While this is certainly an appealing strategy, it is not always the best approach. Trying to time the market can be difficult, and many times the more effective approach is to take a long-term view and hold your investments for the long haul.
Adrian Ashley is a seasoned business and finance writer. With a corporate career spanning over 20years, he has developed deep experience in such diverse areas as investing, business, finance,technology and macroeconomics. He is passionate about captu...