Download Blind Faith: Our Misplaced Trust in the Stock Market and by Edward Winslow PDF

By Edward Winslow

- Over forty percentage of families personal a few kind of universal stock

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Extra resources for Blind Faith: Our Misplaced Trust in the Stock Market and Smarter, Safer Ways to Invest

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Today, anyone can become a day trader. In August 1999 Time magazine published an article entitled “Day Trading: It’s a Brutal World,” which estimated that the number of folks who quit their jobs to become full-time day traders was about 5,000. But if you add those who trade online at home or between meetings at the office, there are as many as 5 million. The technology made it possible, and the bull market made it irresistible. The article quoted Jake Bernstein, author of The Compleat Day Trader, who said that only about 15 percent of those who take up day trading make money at it.

This investor would have experienced a wild roller-coaster ride, with exhilarating ups and breathtaking downs, only to end up below where he or she started four years earlier. 62 on March 10, 2000. 12 on October 8, 1998, in merely nineteen months. Exciting times indeed! 19 on September 21, 2001, equals 72 percent, which coincidentally also took approximately one and one half years. The 256 percent gain sounds like it more than offsets the 72 percent loss, but the money in your wallet is just as thin as when you began.

In theory, options sound like a great tool for giving management incentive and rewarding them for a job well done. This may possibly be true in the short run. However, over a long period of time stock options serve as a big drain on shareholders, as you will soon see. A large corporation usually has a compensation committee that is appointed by the board of directors. This group decides on the structure and distribution of the employee stock option plan. In a company that has yet to offer its shares to the public, management and key employees will be granted options to buy the company’s stock for a specified time in the future at a specified price.

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