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Why Are Investors And Wall Street Picking Up Unprofitable IPOs?

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The IPO market has always been interesting. IPO investors capitalize on high growth companies and might strike a fortune in the long-run if they stay invested in successful companies.

And they’re the ultimate cash-out play for VC investors that came in early. But even getting in early in the IPO stage can be insanely lucrative.

Example.

Facebook [FB] debuted on the stock exchange in May 2012 at $38 per share. The stock reached an all-time high of $218.62 in July this year, providing investors with a return of 475% in just over six years.

But few companies are as successful as Facebook. The social media giant had already reported a net income of $1B in 2010. Last year, the net income rose close to $16B.

That said, the trend this year seen an overwhelmingly large number of private unprofitable company hit Wall Street to major fanfare.

Over 80% of IPOs unprofitable

According to this report from the Wall Street Journal, 83% of IPOs listed in the United States in 2018 have lost money in the 12 months leading to their listing.

This number is even higher compared to the dot-com bubble, where 81% of IPO listing firms were unprofitable.

There are some investors like Kevin Landis, the chief investment officer from Firsthand Capital Management, who are wary about investing in loss-making companies. “The lesson from 2000 is don’t chase what everyone else is chasing,” he’s said.

Translation: Don’t believe the hype. But is he right?

These IPOs have generated significant returns

The report highlights that investors have been rewarded for pumping money into loss-making IPOs this year. The stock prices of money-losing firms in the United States have risen by an average of 36% this year.

Surprisingly, this is higher than the average stock returns of 32% for profitable IPOs this year. Compare this with the 10% returns of the S&P 500 ETF [SPY] and you know that the difference is huge.

Exponential returns by IPOs

Investing in companies is not always about profitability. Sure, everyone would like to strike gold by getting an opportunity to invest in a high growth and profitable company like Facebook.

Amazon [AMZN] which is the second largest company as per market cap, reported losses several years post its IPO. Amazon now consistently reports profits after it expanded into other business segments such as Cloud Services.

So what is it that attracts investors to these stocks? Investors are buoyed with the total available market opportunity of certain companies. They value revenue growth over net income and continue to pump in capital.

Investors hope that companies will turn profitable over the long run. Spotify [SPOT] was listed in April 2018. The stock reached an all-time high of $198.99, gaining over 33%. Investors believe the growth in music streaming to drive company revenue over the next few years.

The cannabis market is also estimated to reach $32B in 2020, up from $9.5B in 2017. This has driven the stock price of Tilray Inc. [TLRY] by 550% in less than three months. Eventbrite [EB] had a price and of $21 to $23 per share and the stock rose 60% higher on its first trading day.

Not every bet is successful

There is, however, a serious downside for investors of these companies in case it fails to meet analyst and investor forecasts. Snap [SNAP] has fallen close to 47% this year driven by a declining user growth.

The loss-making IPOs are generally overvalued due to optimistic assumptions and come crashing down if they fail to deliver. GoPro [GPRO] and Fitbit [FIT] are two such companies that have burnt significant investor wealth.

The last time investors were this optimistic about loss-making tech companies, it ended in a horrific bloodbath with the dot-com bubble. Let’s hope Wall Street is proved right this time around.

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INFOGRAPHIC: How To Invest Your Money (In 8 Simple Steps)

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Plenty of savers are making do with low rates of return on their deposits—almost eroding the value of their savings. Here’s a guide on how you should invest your money and gain some great returns off it.

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Stock Trading: How to Choose the Best Online Brokers

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Stock trading can be a risky business but done right it is an extremely lucrative investment option which yields excellent returns. It is true that trading is quite intimidating for someone who is new to the market and its ways which gives rise to the need for a good stock broker who can handle the job and ensure that the client gets the best returns possible for the money he or she is investing. But as a new investor it is absolutely important that you choose a very good trading broker. Here are some tips that will help you make that choice better.

Understand your trading needs

Before you even look into the services of a trading broker, it is essential that you are aware of your goals and needs from your stock trading. Firstly, prioritise your investment value, short term and long-term goal, and time that you are willing to spend on your trading in order to figure out where you stand. Now, narrow down on the specific kinds of stock exchange that you are looking into. With the wide variety of options available that you can choose from, it is important to narrow down to the specific field or fields and finally look for brokers who suit your specific needs.

Have a clear talk about trading fees

It is important to have a clear-cut discussion on brokerage fee and commissions that your broker will charge you. Ask about the charges per transaction, basic account charges, account minimums and even reimbursements if and when you choose to part ways so that you can have a proper idea about how much you are about to fork out for your trading. It is a good idea to have the talk beforehand so that you do not get into an arrangement which later becomes financially burdensome for you.

Look up reviews on the broker

You would not buy a new product without checking what its previous users have to say, right? Similarly, look up your prospective brokers No matter how promising or lucrative a broker seems with the terms, make sure you check the reviews by InvestinGoal to ensure that you are actually getting a good deal and not being sweet talked into not a good broker or even worse, being conned of your money.

Ask your questions

Do not be afraid to ask whatever questions that come to your mind before you make a deal. This will help you understand your trading better and thus, to get the absolute best out of your investment. It will also help you uncover any hidden charges, non transparent clauses as well that might have later hindered the desirable growth of your stock.

Give a test run

Ask the broker if you can give a test run of your account, and his technology before you actually invest your hard earned money. Many brokers allow you to create a free account which you can use to test their platform and check out user friendliness, ease of trading, quality of tools etc and thus, make an educated decision.

Getting the right broker is definitely one step towards a good stock trading investment. Therefore, it is very important that you take utmost care in picking the very best broker for your trading needs.

This article originally appeared on ValueWalk. Follow ValueWalk on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

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3 Simple Steps To Build Your Investment Portfolio

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If you’re starting out with planning your investments, chalking out your goals and how you’d like to achieve them is incredibly important. You’ll need to understand what kind of assets you’d like to invest in–be it exotic instruments like private equity or the tried and tested ones like the treasury bonds, ETFs and stocks–and invest right. Here are three key strategies to build your portfolio:

1. Building Wealth Is All About Thinking Rationally (And Smart)

Having the right mindset can play a huge role in how you build your investments. It’s simply not just about strategy. To ditch following the latest fad in the market, you need to be responsible and have a sense of social indifference–coupled with confidence and patience.

2. Invest Like A Cheapskate

If you’re pumping in $150,000 as investment, on which you incur 1% as fees, look out for ways through which you can cut them down.

If you were to cut costs by a little more than a half, that’s saving you at least $1,120 in fees every year. But that’s not it–when this saving is compounded every year, that 1% fee can tally up to a million (if saved, could win you your big ticket to becoming a millionaire!)

3. The KISS (Keep It Simple, Silly) Rule

Funnily enough, most of us think investing your way through millions demands extensive knowledge of financial instruments or strategies. Surprisingly, it’s the simplest of assets that gave the biggest investors their biggest wins. Many successful investors highlight their success to stocks, bonds and other popular alternative investments, patiently held over time.

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