For many, the stock market can be a confusing and intimidating place to venture. The concept can be difficult to understand, but it has been a part of financial life for centuries.
The main purpose of the stock market is for companies and businesses to gain more capital. This capital, in turn, can fund innovations and ideas and create new products and businesses for the world to enjoy. It has been the basis of many modern companies, and it had a direct effect on the products we enjoy today, including Apple’s iPhone and iPads and Microsoft computers. Not only does the stock market raise money for companies, but it’s a proven indicator of the economy as a whole. When the recent Global Financial Crisis occurred, it highlighted the importance stock markets have the economic strength and development in countries around the world.
Traditional & Modern
The premise of stock trading can be dated as far back as the middle of the 13thcentury when Venetian bankers began trading government securities. The emergence of trading meant that merchants now had the opportunity to gain more wealth, instead of it sitting solely with the nobility. The example was quickly followed by Italian companies, who issued the first shares, with England starting their own trading in the 16th century. Formal stock markets began with the Dutch East India Company in the 1600s offering shares to the general public. In today’s modern, connected world, nearly every developed country has their own stock market, and regularly trade with each other, with the USA, United Kingdom, China, Germany and France having the largest markets.
The 2013 award-winning film, The Wolf Of Wall Street, gave a large audience an insight into the bustling work of modern stock traders and made the risk-taking world look as exhilarating as taking part in the World Series of Poker. It meant that the average gambler sitting at home believed they too could become as successful and rich as the Wolf himself.
However, it’s vital to remember that while trading on the stock market can essentially be classed as gambling, the traders are often making calculated and informed decisions, although they are ultimately taking risks.
The Online Stock Market
The online stock market has made it easier than ever for everyday players to get into the game. There is a vast variety of companies and businesses featured online, from obscure small-town companies to the world-famous brands we all know.
In today’s modern world, traditional stock exchanges have moved with the times and now appear online, with the London Stock Exchange and the New York Stock Exchange providing detailed information about prices, indicators of how the stock will perform and a view on the global market. However, one of the many challenges of the online Stock Market is the sheer volume of information available. With each country adding their own stocks, it’s easy to become lost within the system.
In 2018, the online stock market is becoming inundated with Bitcoin investments and chances to invest in multibillion-dollar companies such as Facebook.
The variety of investment types on the stock market can be overwhelming for those just getting into the world of shares and bonds, and it’s important to fully understand each one before you try to make your first investment. The most popular investment types include stocks, bonds, mutual funds, EFTs and alternative investments – all of which can be found on the online stock market.