Originally in this post I linked to one of my AC articles, but it appears the article was "spammy sales copy" so was removed. No bad feelings here, but I'll post the article here in its original entirety as I am very proud of my first "Spammy" article!
How to Invest in the Stock Market for Free!
Take a Gamble on Today's Stock Market Without Using Your Own Money!
By Rebecca Rosenburg
The stock market is crashing. Pink slips are coming. College graduates are beginning to think that working at McDonald's will be the best use of their shiny new Masters degree. Thoughts of jumping into the stock market now are just plain crazy! But what if you could do it for free?
Last fall I became the proud owner of Circuit City stock, GM stock, and a couple others. A year ago I would have never imagined that I, a single parent living below the poverty line, would be a stockholder! While watching my Circuit City stock tumble in defeat after a bankruptcy and my GM stock hit all time lows one could expect me to be stressed out, biting my nails, and wanting to groan in agony. Instead, I am indifferent. Of course I would like my chosen stock to be on the upswing, but I don't worry. I'm not worried about my stock tumbling and yo-yoing because I didn't pay for it. Nope, I didn't pay a cent!
While doing some research online I found a company that often has promotions to entice people to start investing. The promotions I found last fall offered a $50. bonus just for signing up and making one trade! A current promotion offers a $25. bonus for opening a new account and making a trade.
This is what I did:
First, I opened an account with Sharebuilder using a $50. promotion code. Sharebuilder is a subsidiary of ING Direct. I then funded my account with $15. and looked at various cheap stocks. After I found Circuit City trading for less than a dollar, I made my first trade. The transaction or trading fee was $9.95 and the cost of 5 shares of Circuit City stock was a dollar. I transferred what was left of the $15. I had funded the account with back into my savings account. One month later, there was $50. in my Sharebuilder account. I transferred the $50. to my savings account replacing the amount I spent of my money and ending up with profit.
After my first trade I started doing more research, learning about market and limit orders, what cheap stock was at greater risk, and all about dividends. At the end of this journey into the stock market, my results are as follows:
I invested $93. of my savings.
I deposited $150. into my savings account from the promotions- meaning I replaced the $93. and got an additional $57. to add to my savings!
I am the proud owner of 46 shares of stock spread between 4 different companies.
Granted, 46 shares of stock isn't much to brag about. However, this is a great way for families of limited means to dip their feet into the stock market without risking any of their hard-earned money! This is also a great opportunity for all kinds of people and families to buy their first stock or buy stock for a loved one.
This blog lists current Sharebuilder promotions and when you scroll to the bottom of the page you will see the most recent comments from people who have used the promotions. One note- never use the promotion GIFT50 or any variation thereof. This promotion is only applicable to people who have been given a gift certificate. Current promotions as of March 4, 2009 are: TRADEUP50 (This promotion applies if you transfer to Sharebuilder from another broker) and SHARE25 (For any new Sharebuilder account get a $25. bonus). Check the blog often for new promotions!