Find any Australian or New Zealand company or fund (dead or alive) by using SEARCH above or go directly to the site:
Selecting shares may be difficult, knowing when to buy even more so. Books have been written on the subject.
When to buy shares
Far too many investors are attracted only by a bull market and often after its run is almost over. They exit later after the market turns and when they can’t bear the market going any lower.
Here are some pointers:
Even the experts get it badly wrong:
On 1 July 2008, when the All Ords had closed the previous day on 5333, the chief equities economist at one of Australia’s most prominent brokers picked the index to reach 6100 by end year 2008 (actual 3659) and the Aussie dollar to be at US 96 cents (actual 69 cents). (The writer vividly remembers both forecasts because he placed some reliance on them!!)
If the experts can be so far out only six months in advance, how can us lesser mortals pick the market? Forget it. Trying to pick the bottom will probably lead to missing it altogether. Focus rather on selecting the right investment. While shares are obviously cheaper when the NZ50 is 2500 rather than 4000, don’t take any less care in selecting the right companies. In tough times concentrate on healthy cash reserves and strong balance sheets.
While we are on the subject of forecasts, here is a book that reveals why "experts" are so often wrong with their predictions and why our need to have certainty in our lives means we will go on believing them despite consistent failures.
How to buy shares
Fortunately the actual act of buying shares is relatively simple these days.
One approach is to utilise the services of your bank. Some of the banks have broking arms or alliances. One advantage here is that you may be able to link existing savings accounts for use in the buying or selling of shares. Here are the links for some bank customers:
(neither BNZ nor WESTPAC appear to have such alliances)
Consider a full service broker
If you are not sure what to buy, then at least consider using a full-service broker. (you can find someone close to you here), But first satisfy yourself in relation to the following questions before committing:
Internet based non-advisory brokers
This is the best way to buy shares if you have decided what to buy and you are happy to use the internet. See our list of brokers here together with their brokerage rates. Most of them also offer the facility to place orders by telephone.