Investing for dummies

I know there are a million threads out there on investing but I just don’t know where to start. With ever decreasing interest rates I was thinking of investing. I know I should probably look for a fund somewhere, but I don’t know where. What’s the best approach? What platform should I go to.

Barclays offer similar services but charge up to 1.6% which seems an awful lot (all I have to compare it to is current interest rates, to be honest). Is this normal? Where should I put my money?


Try here, you will get a better response.


If you like to read, Smarter Investing by Tim Hale is a great place to start.

To summarise, buy a low cost index fund that tracks the whole market. This could be the FTSE Global All Cap through Vanguard, who are the lowest cost provider.


It’s a fair question to think about - returns. Near 0% interest rates are not what you want.

So my first tip is get some knowledge under your belt - I’d have a look at Hargreaves Lansdown - maybe not to invest but definitely for background information.

Second tip only invest amounts that you are prepared to lose money - potentially.

My worst outcome- lost £6.5k after a company went bust.
Best outcome - 700% increase over 3 years - pity I didn’t put more than £1k in.

It’s a minefield to start with but it becomes easier with time.

Final tip watch out for charges - no matter what growth you have (or loss) this can be your number one expense with investing over time.

Good luck!

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There’s a few robo traders out their which is pick a risk level and chuck in money.

Wealthify is my favourite, also Wealthsimple

Out of brokers where you pick them yourself the Monzo / Starling equivalent is:

Freetrade and T212

The old school legacies:

Hargreaves Lansdown and AJ Bell

You can copytrade with eToro.

And if you want to do similar but with CFD then there’s ProQuant.

I personally would create a T212 ISA account and then look at blue chip (pick things you use everyday Apple, Mastercard, PayPal, AMD etc) and some ETFs (S&P, World, Gold, Tech, Energy) etc

If you create a pie you can setup a transfer that tops it up every month from your bank.

Also worth looking at Wisealpha. I have been using their Robowise for a while and had a very decent return.

Would also recommend T212 for ETFs/stocks.

Whatever you do, diversify!

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This here I use that for my SIPP up £5G since feb :wink:

Obvs I know it can go down but I add £50 a month can’t touch it till I am what 55 or something :joy:

Take a look at Vanguard Lifestrategy funds. This is similar to using a Roboadvisor service but at lower cost. You simply pick one of 5 funds with different percentage blends of stocks and bonds (which relates to your preference for risk) and ongoing rebalancing is done for you (to maintain same % blend over time).


I delved after the rates began to plummet.

I’ve used Freetrade and Trading 212 to try and ‘pick stocks’ and have made about £100 from doing so with some other shares (gold streamers) down about £15 but not a loss till you sell…

I have a ‘Balanced’ S&S ISA with Moneybox that I top up. I’ve made about £30 having put in less gradually via DD. Lost about £6 to fees. Just opened a Socially Responsible ‘Adventurous’ GIA to go with it.

I do however have money stuck on Trading 212 where they won’t remove linked debit cards for withdrawals (they pick one at random). I topped up with Monese once, which is closed, and good luck getting evidence of the card being cancelled which 212 request…

All in all I’m only putting in a fraction of the overall and in all fairness despite a bit more faff it has returned more than all my savings do…

You can also make a few quid off referring a friend with 212 and Freetrade.

Hm, all of this is still a little daunting. I don’t understand the difference between ETFs, funds and whatnot. What should I pick? Who can explain? It’s terrible

Or you could just get a Vanguard fund


One thing to remember is that during the Trump presidency, stocks have performed very well. You could pretty much have bought anything and made a profit.

Even after the drop due to Covid, stocks have recovered well. Driven by furloughed people at home spending their government funded wages on FANG shares and the likes of Tesla. At some point that government support stops and the redundancies kick in.

Whether market momentum continues under a Biden presidency nobody knows. That said I tend to just keep investing frequently in small chunks and let market fluctuations average themselves out.

S&P price change by President

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Take a bit of time to read some guides in full. Will be better than getting info piece by piece via forums. For example,

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30 seconds explanation :grinning:

You have stocks:

AAPL Apple

An ETF is a collection:

AAPL Apple 50%
TSLA Tesla 40%
FB Facebook 10%

That ETF it would be tracking those stocks at those percentages. So you can buy shares of the ETF and those are what it’s following.

Yes but CV has skewed a lot of figures. Difficult to say where things might have been if it wasn’t for CV.

Between the lowest point in Feb/March and today the US500 has increased about 66% hitting an all time high.

I’ll just throw this one in

Usually the president has little affect over World issues, like Covid would have been the same impact. It might have been handled better under a democratic leader or even a different GOP we’ll never know.

Basically the fear of the stocks going down under a Biden win were just scare tactics from Republicans.

The only stocks I will be avoiding are those that negatively impact the environment as dems tend to have better environmental protection. NAK is a good example

I think too much emphasis is being put on my reference to the presidencies which wasn’t the main point I was making. I remember when Trump was elected there was a feeling that the markets were due a dip because they had been quite high. They didn’t and continued to rise (until CV).

The main point I was making is that during that short/medium time period it was easy to make a profit.

I am not expecting a sudden downturn under Biden. I think it will be redundancies and insolvencies that could cause a drop. That said he could borrow trillions and use that to fund the economy.

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Well we definitely hit a bullish bubble but at some point there will be a correction. We already had a taste.

Biden has been passed the baton covered in crap. Not entirely Trumps fault, however I think the US could have had a potato in charge and we would have seen the same S&P stats.

The key advice to @ndrw is it’s worth learning a small bit about charts. The key one RSI and MACD. Also plot the 50 and 200 EMAs on the daily to see where the current price is in relation to the short and long term trends. Ideally you want to avoid buying above the long term moving average and above 70 RSI, and look for under 40 RSI and catch them oversold.

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