Are investment newsletters worthwhile? | Financial Mappers

Subscribe to Newsletters: Are investment newsletters worthwhile?

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I’m often asked if I subscribe to investment newsletters, and do I find them on any value?

The answer to the first question that I do subscribe to both free and subscription-based investment newsletters and have done so since they first became popular. Initially they came in the mail, but now everything is delivered online.

In this age of instant access to information, one has to be careful not to oversubscribe or you’ll be overloaded with information, much of which will be conflicting.

There will be those that say newsletter providers are in the business of selling newsletters, rather than providing the consumer with the information they are seeking. From my experience, this is not the case. Editors of newsletters take great care and pride in the information they provide.

The fact is, their reputation is as good as their last recommendation. If they get it wrong too often, then patronage is likely to drop off pretty quickly. They spend a lot of time on research, and take the time to explain why they have taken a point of view. The good ones will also alert you to the fact that not all scenarios play out as planned for any number of unforeseen events.

For me, I subscribe for two reasons, and choose my newsletters accordingly.

The first reason is that I want to get the future macro changes which are likely to change in the investment outlook.

For example, what is going to impact most on share prices over the next five to ten years? What is going to influence the price of materials such as gold, copper, iron ore, etc.? How is this likely to reflect the price of particular shares? They may also point you in the direction of which industries and technologies are likely to be dominant in the next economic cycle. With all this information they will probably recommend which shares are likely to rise or fall faster than the general market.

The second reason I may choose to pay a subscription is to get important information on the smaller shares which are off the radar of most investors.

Now, while their selected recommendations do not all achieve outstanding success, I do find there is sufficient success rate to warrant the cost. But at the end of the day, it’s you that makes the call as to when to buy and more importantly when to sell. For those of you who read my articles, you will know I don’t believe in buying shares where the trend is down. However, sometimes in these situations, you need to monitor the share price, and sometimes, take a chance. The tip is usually relying on some future event which they believe has a good chance of occurring, and if it does the price may go up 100% to 200% in a matter of days, and by the time you see it in the chart it is too late.

If you currently don’t subscribe to any newsletters, I would suggest you start with some of the free ones, which normally are ‘teasers’ to get you to buy the important information. However, there is still plenty of sound free information. From there you can make the decision if any paid subscriptions on offer are value for money. This is a decision for you and the type of investor you are. There will be several newsletters for every type of investor, whether you consider yourself a ‘Value Investor’ looking for good long term shares to buy, or if you’re a bit of a ‘Gambler’ and like to have a few speculative stocks in your portfolio.

One investment service I use is Port Philip Publishing. They have the largest selection; a stable of over twenty newsletters, two of which are free. These are Money Morning and The Daily Reckoning.

In late October, I attended their two-day ‘The Great Repression – The Battle for you Wealth in an Age of Financial Tyranny’ conference held at Port Douglas sponsored by Port Philip Publishing. The theme of the conference was that governments had repressed the normal economic cycles by keeping interest rates very low for an extended period of time and this was repressing the ability of investors to invest in a normal environment.

For any serious investor these types of event are very important. It allows you to hear a wide range of views and reconsider your investment strategy. It also gives you the opportunity to talk with other investors and listen to their views and where they source their information.

At this conference, you were exposed to the thoughts of three world leaders invited to give their views on this topic. Jim Rogers, Jim Richards, and Satyajit Das, are household names and leaders in the international world of investments. They were joined by further ten editors and guest speakers, each presenting investment ideas for the current market situation.

I think one of the most important issues discussed for the investor was to recognise what you don’t know.

By nature, every investor has their personal prejudices, and these will lead you to listen to those with your view and ignore those with a counter view. Greg Canavan, of Crisis and Opportunity, believes that to be a successful investor you must set aside your personal views and listen to what is actually happening to the market at the current time and take appropriate action.

For example, if you’re a pessimist you’re likely to take the view that the share market is overvalued and must fall, ignoring lost opportunities. On the other hand, if you are an optimist you will likely believe the share market will always keep rising, even when share prices are falling.

What Greg says is that you need to put aside what you think is going to happen and look at a chart and see what is actually happening and the current time.

I would like to take the opportunity to congratulate Port Philip Publishing for organising this event, which was hugely successful for 650 attendees. I believe that anyone who could not attend can purchase videos of the event.

Glenis Phillips, F Fin

Disclaimer: Financial Mappers does not have an Australian Financial Services License, does not offer financial planning advice and does not recommend financial products.
I am a founding board member of Plencore Wealth Ltd and Plencore Online Pty Ltd. I am the designer of the product Financial Mappers and Financial Mappers PRO, cloud based modelling software for Personal Finance. This software is sold on the web site www.financialmappers.com.au.I am an educator, investor and expert in both personal finance and mathematical modelling and the author of 'Map Your Finances'.I have both a Graduate Diploma in Applied Finance and Investments and a Diploma in Financial Advising from the Securities Institute of Australia. I also have a Financial Analysis Certificate, by Distance Learning from University of Technology, Sydney. I am a Senior Fellow and Senior Mentor of FINSIA.
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