You might think that investing in the stock market is only for people with a lot of money to spare or someone that has, unusually good luck. Nothing could be further from the truth. Just about anybody can learn how to invest in the stock market, so that most of their investments make money, instead of losing it.

Do not blindly follow the recommendations of your investment broker without doing some due diligence of your own. Ensure that the investment is registered with the SEC and find some background information on the way that the investment has performed in the past. There have been instances of fraud whereby the information presented by the broker was fabricated.

Never rely on hearsay, as following the crowd is often a recipe for disaster. When everyone buys the same stocks, the value will decrease and less people are going to buy it in the future. Think independently and do your own research, instead of solely depending on what others say.

One fund to consider when investing in the stock market is an index fund. Index funds simply track a segment of the market, most popularly the S&P 500. It takes very little effort and it guarantees that you, at least, pace the market at large. Studies show that actively managed funds largely underperformed index funds. It is hard to beat the market.

Know the risks of different types of investments. Stocks are generally riskier than bonds, for instance. Riskier investments, generally, have higher payoff potentials, while less risky vehicles tend to provide lower, more consistent returns. Understanding the differences between different vehicles can allow you to make the best decisions about what to do with your money, in both the short and long terms.

A stock’s price is not the only indication of how expensive it is. Since stock, values are contingent upon earnings, a stock that costs a hundred dollars might actually be inexpensive if the earnings’ outlook is optimistic. Likewise, a stock that costs only a few dollars might be quite pricey if the associated company’s earning projections are not bright.

Investing through a brokerage has become very affordable over the past few years; however, it is still important for you to shop around. When deciding which brokerage to use, you should compare the fees that are assessed for trading, along with other fees such as account maintenance fees. You should also take into account the research tools that are available, the convenience of using their interface, and the level of customer support offered.

When searching for stocks then look into those that get you a greater return than 10%, which is the market average, because you can actually get that type of return from index funds. If you’d like to estimate your return from a stock, find the earnings growth rate that’s projected and add that to the dividend yield. Any stock yielding 3% with 10% earning growth is going to provide you a 13% overall return.

As you can see, there’s a lot more to stock market investments than having good luck. Making money through stock market investments requires time, forethought and intelligent planning. The tips you just read, can help you get started investing. You should be equipped to choose your first stocks after finishing this article.