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Profit Loss Jigsaw

My Top 5 Investing Mistakes (Guest Post)

To give myself a little time off, today’s post is a Guest Post, and you know my Opinion of Guest Posts normally, however, this is a post by someone who I trust and also it is an honest explanation by an experienced finance person of the mistakes they have made in their personal finance lives, and those are the kind of Guest Posts I like (i.e. from the heart and personal). Who is TuskTrader? I’ll steal some copy from Preet’s web site as a point of introduction:

This is a guest post on trading from Tusk Trader (check out the newly launched site:, an experienced Bay Street trader. Tusk had a front row seat to the twists, turns, and almost collapse of our capital market systems a few years ago and provides a unique perspective you won’t find anywhere else. For most people, financial literacy is the elephant in the room. Let Tusk Trader help change that. If you are on twitter, make sure to follow Tusk at @TuskTrader

Hello readers! I am very honored to be contributing a piece to one of the best personal finance blogs in Canada. I have been asked to share my own investing mistakes. I began this process by recounting my own investing history year by year, and compiling a list that grew shockingly long as the minutes ticked by. It was ego battery at it’s best. The selection process for the top 5 was not as hard as I thought it would be. My biggest mistakes are also the ones I learned the most from and are what guide many of my decisions I make now.

Being a trader, many readers might think the list I am about to reveal to you all will be a big list of trading disasters. If you fall into that category, you will be surprised. As with many people, it is not the actual investment or particular trade that causes the anguish and unfortunate outcome, it is the lack of knowledge, lack of discipline, and other activities surrounding the investment portfolio decisions that have caused most of my regrettable mistakes. The losses I have taken in my own trading account have rarely been due to out of control losing trades. I have been very good at setting appropriate stop losses and I have entry and exit parameters well-defined before I get into a position. Now that I have stuffed in at least one compliment about myself in this piece, I feel more secure about revealing to you all my biggest investing mistakes and regrets.

I do not have the longest investing history. I have actually been a trader longer than I have been an investor. If you are young yourself or if you have someone young in your life, please share these with them. I think the new investor might get the most from my errors.

The first two mistakes I want to discuss have a lot to do with personal money management but they dramatically affected my overall investing performance. They prevented me from investing anything at all and as we all know, the longer your time horizon, the more choices you have to be a successful investor.

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