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I Invested In Facebook, Twitter, AMD, And Snap, Made 6.3X—And I Absolutely Hated It

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Writer’s note: So here’s the background. This following post originally appeared on my Biggerpockets.com column. 

Now peep this. I buy and manage real estate for a living. Naturally I’m biased in favor of that asset class, namely because of the lower volatility. As an extension of that bias, I wrote this piece a few months to illustrate why I prefer stock…well, less. 

I saw the stock markets were down. I really didn’t want to buy. But I had to. As Neil Patel told me, “You make money on the buy.” Sure enough, my holdings damn near doubled in a matter of months.

Months after that, Snap’s gone into the toilet, BlackBerry’s on some f*ck sh*t, AMD stopped surging and it’s right back to where I started—HIGHLIGHTING exactly why stocks (from a short-term investor perspective) is something I really don’t love.

Here’s what I wrote April 30 of this year.

***

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: I do not like stocks. I really don’t. Granted, for a new investor, it’s a great, free way to get in the asset column with very little money.

And there are many public securities — especially real estate-backed ones — that help you build wealth. But on a macro level, I absolutely hate it.

So, a few weeks ago, the stock market tanked — based on trade tension speculation (or something).

I was looking at the Robinhood dashboard, which shows how the stocks are trending. Everything was red! And you know what they say, when there’s blood in the streets, you buy — right?

So I picked up a couple of common-sense stocks based on what people are using; Twitter, Snapchat, Facebook, you know, the tech blue-chippers.

Then some Blackberry ones based on driverless technology they have, and a VR/AI stock with a big market share. (Writer’s note: This was AMD, the hottest stock of the year. Which since has gotten crushed. Shows how smart I was.) Gotta invest in the future, right?

Long story short, the very next trading day I was up 10%. I kept looking every day, more and more disgusted with the volatile nature of these equities — in spite of how I was winning! Less than three weeks later, I am now up a ridiculously disgusting 630% annualized.

And as of today, stocks dropped again. Just based on some speculation about oil. (Or something.) So I’m probably about to make another score when it inevitably re-stabilizes. And it’s absolutely filthy.

Here’s My Problem With Stocks…

Like many business owners, I hate surprises. I don’t even want anyone to throw me a surprise party. And stocks are full of surprises.

I actually did an interview last year explaining why I think real estate investments crush stocks all day.

Bold Biz: Philip Michael

Philip Michael has experience in media, journalism, real estate, entrepreneurship, and more… He shared his experience with #BoldBiz

Posted by BoldTV on Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Now, because of rules, you’ll have to click here to read the rest here. Or hit me on IG and we can get the conversation started.

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Early Uber Investor: ‘I’m Happy With Uber’s Poor IPO’

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Lance Armstrong may not have gotten his $3B on his $100K investment, but his $100K still got a proper HGH/steroid boost.

And despite the rough outing, early investor Mitchell Green says he’s happy with the current IPO price—despite falling WAY south of its initially rumored $120B level.

And no, it’s not the Mitch Green, the one who got into a street fight with Mike Tyson.

Image result for mitch green gif

Uber rich Mitch Green looks like this:

Image result for mitchell green lead edge

Anyway. Green says he’s happy with the current pricing. Check out the video to see why.

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‘Going Public’: IPO, Explained

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It’s a buzzword we hear constantly—and one that’s sure to generate tons of headlines. Alibaba had the largest in history (before its billionaire founder decided he wanted to quit to be a grade school teacher.)

Lyft IPO’d recently also, beating arch rival Uber to the proverbial punch.

Other than being a buzzword and a big story, what exactly is an IPO?! Well, let’s break it down.

What is an IPO?!

In technical terms, an Initial Public Offering (IPO) is the first sale of stock issued by a company to the public. In other words, this is the moment when a private company goes “public” by offering its shares for sale to the public.

So when a company does go public, the valuation usually spikes dramatically—and the company can now use the funds from the sale of shares to feed the business. It’s a fabulous funding source for a company.

Before that, what is a company?

Prior to going public, a company is a privately-owned firm. Obviously. The company initially attracts investments or seed capital from the co-founder, friends, and families.

Business investors such as venture capitalists, private equity companies and angel investors pump in money if they are optimistic about long-term prospects and sustainability of the company.

On the flip side of things, you sometimes have companies that decide to go “private,” like Elon Musk said he wanted to do with Tesla. 

Why does a company opt for an IPO?

The biggest advantage for a publicly listed company is access to capital. This capital can be used to purchase machinery, fund research and development or pay off any existing debt.

The firm will then be listed on a public exchange and provides an exit route for business investors and founders.

When Facebook went public, Mark Zuckerberg sold 30M shares worth $1.1B. An IPO is the most common way for investors and VCs to make a significant return on their investment. In fact, it’s considered the ultimate exit for founders.

How much capital do the companies get?

Let’s run down the list.

Alibaba [BABA] raised $25B in an IPO back in Sept. 2014. Facebook [FB] raised $16B in May 2012. Visa [V] raised $7.9B in March 2008.

Top tech unicorns such as Uber, Slack, and Airbnb are on course to file for an IPO over the next 18 months.

The company that is looking to go public hires an investment bank to underwriting the IPO process. Investment banks can either work together or individually in this process.

What do the investment bankers do?

In other words, all the boring admin stuff. In exchange for this, they collect a nice fat fee, usually anywhere from 4-7% of gross proceeds.

Those involved hold several meetings to finalize the IPO process and determine the timing of the filing. Once this is wrapped up, they shift to performing the due diligence to ensure the company’s registration statements are accurate.

The due diligence tasks include market due diligence, legal and IP due diligence, financial and tax due diligence. At the end of this process, the companies then file for an S-1 Registration Statement.

The S-1 is usually what tips off the press and the public that a company is about to go, well, public.

And what’s the S-1?

The S-1 statement includes information about the companies’ historical financial statements, company overview, risk factors, and other critical data.

A pre-IPO analyst meeting is then held post the S-1 Registration Statement to educate analysts and bankers about the company.

Confused yet?

A preliminary prospectus can also be drafted at this stage. The underwriting investment bank conducts pre-marketing to determine the interest of institutional investors and the price they are willing to pay per share.

Now you’re ready to go public

The price range for an IPO is set and the S-1 Registration Statement is amended with the price range.  The company’s management organizes road shows and marketing activities to generate interest for the upcoming IPO.

Based on investor interest, the price range per share can be revised. The investors will apply for company shares and this application window is open for generally 2-4 days. The company shares can be oversubscribed or undersubscribed.

Once the IPO is priced, the investment banks will allocate shares to investors where the stock will now be available for trading in the secondary market.

At this point, a company is now ready to go public. Here’s how people usually look when that happens.

Image result for snap IPO

SNAP executives during happier days.

Congrats. You’re now an IPO expert.

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[VIDEO] Penny Stocks, Explained

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Penny stocks are equity investments that are traded outside major exchanges. These stocks are traded at low prices and have a small market cap. As penny stocks are illiquid and highly speculative, they carry a high risk of investment.

The US Securities and Exchange Commission (or SEC) defines penny stocks as shares with a value of less than $5. Typically, a penny stock is traded over the counter or by using pink sheets.

Despite the high risks of investment, penny stocks can be a lucrative form of investment because of its low price and higher prospects of return.

Suitable for investors with a high-risk tolerance

Investing in equity markets is risky, particularly because it’s driven by price fluctuations and volatility. Investors in penny stocks will generally have a higher threshold of risk tolerance. Penny stocks are far more volatile than blue-chip stocks.

Investors hence need to take precautions while investing in penny stocks. They need to have a stop-loss order prior to entering into a trade. This will minimize the amount of downside potential in case the markets move in the opposite direction.

Penny stocks also provide an opportunity for significant companies. These companies are generally high-growth ones but with limited cash resources.

Why are penny stocks attractive to the average retail investor?

Generally, the average retail investor associates a low price stock as a bargain. But this cannot be farther from the truth. A stock can be overvalued at $1 and can be undervalued at $250.

The average investor fails to understand this due to limited investing knowledge. Penny stocks are trading at lower values for a reason. They might experience a bull run resulting in a significant price appreciation but can also come crashing down in no time. It is far easier to manipulate penny stocks.

The “Caveat Emptor” principle should be applied when investing in penny stocks. Sure, there are success stories even for penny stock investors, but is worth the risk?

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