Since posting the first installment of the same title, I have received some incredibly interesting feedback, suggestions, constructive criticism, questions and comments. As I said before, there are many other things we can do besides what I listed in the previous post that will initiate REAL change. With that in mind, I’d like to add more specific actions that ANYONE can take (if not all, some). So without further adieu (we left off on #6):
7. If you own stocks and are not earning dividends that are at least somewhat proportionate to the profits generated by the company, dump them. One thing that many companies have gotten into the habit of doing, and wrongly so, is to get their shareholders to believe that the money to be made in owning their stock is from the share price, not from its profit. This is beyond ludicrous. To this day, I can’t imagine why ANYONE would want to own a stock without being able to directly benefit from the PROFIT that company generates. Yes, a rising stock price is nice, don’t get me wrong. But a company is not in business just to increase its stock price. So why should run-of-the-mill shareholders not get to benefit in a company’s profit with a decent dividend distribution? It’s insane.
Back in my stock-trading days, I made it a point to make sure that I as a shareholder benefited from a company’s profit. Why? Well for starters, I have had MANY investors in my own various business ventures. And never once did I not expect them to benefit from the profits generated by the business. That’s why you invest in a business whether it’s a mega-corporation or a hot dog stand. Not to benefit from just the stock price! Shareholders of ANY sized company, small or large, should expect no less.
Why is this important other than for the obvious reasons? Because “average investors” need to realize that unless they are getting their fair share of the PROFITS being generated by a company, then they are just enabling OTHERS way above them to benefit from the profits at their expense. It really is that simple. No way around it. I don’t care what anybody says.
8. Do NOT take ANY institutional investment advice, analysis or recommendations at face value. Ever. The “investment industry” as we know it is part of the problem. The Smart Money can and will manipulate the lowest tiers of “average Joe” investors to serve their whims, shield them from risks, and of course to generate additional profits. Therefore to follow any kind of investment advice distributed by all the usual channels is at best self-defeating. And at worst, allows incredible levels of fraud and manipulation to occur. Unless you have a true knowledge of how the markets work, as in real IN-DEPTH knowledge, then you should not be trading or investing in those markets. Sorry, that’s the ugly truth.
9. If you have any kind of retirement account being professionally managed, it’s time to roll it over into an IRA that’s under your control. Now. Don’t believe me? Sit down and calculate how much in fees you have paid over the years to have your retirement account “managed” by an alleged professional. Then look at your returns. Especially the last few years. Unless you have been experiencing an INCREDIBLE rate of return, you’ve been pissing away money in exorbitant fees. Not to mention commissions, and perhaps even horrific back-end hidden charges that you probably will never really find out about. At this point, your retirement nest egg is better off in gold (see my shameless plug link on the 1st installment 😉 ), than it is in the hands of any “manager”. Remember, you have to take your capital OUT OF THE GAME. That includes your retirement fund.
10. Assume that ANYTHING happening regarding Wall Street and its related investment vehicles will only add fuel to the very machine we’re trying to bring down. Unless you can prove otherwise. This one is self-explanatory. No other elaboration needed.
11. Have you come across a company, bank or other organization that goes against the grain and actually operates ethically and honestly? Tell others about it! As much as it’s our responsibility to publicly villify and humiliate the wrongdoing companies and their bad guys, it’s equally important to elevate and promote the ones who are doing things right and above board. And yes, there are many companies who value corporate responsibility and ethics. At least to an acceptable extent.
So here are some more SPECIFIC ACTIONS to chew on for now. I will be continuing on this tangent as the list of possible actions develops. Link to first installment Here