This is a little light hearted and not in line with the usual postings on here but since it’s my birthday I thought I would lighten the mood a little before getting more serious with an increase in the number of posts and some recommendations. Enjoy!
Stories of penny stock fortunes abound. Most of us have heard the tale of Aunt Betsy, who bought Intel at 3 pounds a share, or Uncle Herbert, who got in on the ground level of ATT. We know that the stock market has made millionaires. But still, we think, penny stocks are not for us – or are they. Use your imagination for a moment, and consider the possibilities.
A gift from Grandma
The 1980s have just begun. You graduated high school, and as a gift, Grandma gave you 400 pounds in Wal-Mart shares, telling you that she is helping you to build your penny stock fortunes. You thank Grandma profusely for her generous gift. Later, you ask your dad what the stock market even is, and what you are supposed to do with 5455 “penny” shares of some company that you never heard of. Dad tells you that this is an up and coming retailer in the United States and that someday it may be worth a lot of money and no you cannot sell the shares now to buy a car. Whatever. You put the stock paper aside, and go listen to the new Stones album. Years go by, and you are far too busy to care about stocks.
Fifteen years later, you are done with college, working, and engaged to that special someone. At the wedding, Grandma gives you an envelope; inside is 400 pounds worth of shares in a company called Dollar Tree. Ah, another company you never heard of, but it reminds you of those other shares she gave you years ago. You’ll have to look into those. But now, it is time for that wedding dance to the latest Madonna song.
What ever happened to those stocks?
A few more years go by. You and your spouse have had a baby, and while money is always tight, life is generally good. Of course, more money would be better, but you can only work so hard. One day, you are cleaning out your office, making room for that new computer that is supposed to be Y2K proof. As you sort through some papers, you come across that old Wal-Mart stock. You pause and think about how friends of your have mentioned the stock market, and of course, now you know that Wal-Mart is a huge conglomerate – you wonder if they are worth much. You might as well look at those wedding stocks too, so you get both pieces of paper together, and look them up. You aren’t too excited – Grandma only gave you 800 pounds worth of stocks, but hey, they may be worth a few thousand now, and that could help with the baby.
You finish hooking up your new computer and get online to check out these stocks. Almost instantly, your face goes white. Your hands are almost shaking. You call your spouse in because you must be looking at this wrong. Nope, you are right. Those Wal-Mart shares, well Grandma paid .07 pounds a share in 1980. Now, it sells for 45.23 pounds – your shares are now worth 246,744 pounds! And those Dollar Tree stocks are now worth 5,156 pounds, after just five years. Grandma’s gifts to you started as 800 pounds, and are now worth a total of almost 252,000 pounds. Grandma built you a penny stock fortune, while you were not even paying attention.
A penny stock fortune
Now, imagine for a moment, that you used most of that to pay cash for a new house, but kept 50,000 in savings. A few more years have gone by. Now, it’s the financial crisis of 2008, and things look bad for the big banks. You decide to invest your 50,000 pounds of that money you earned from Grandma’s penny stocks into a single bank stock, that is valued at pennies, but which you (and Grandma, of course) feel confident will recover. You wait a few years, and now, they have rebounded from .50 a stock to 35.50 a stock. That stock is now worth three and a half million pounds! You are not even 50 years old, and you are rich. You and your family have secured your penny stock fortunes, and you can now retire, living life on easy street.
The reality of penny stocks
The above scenario is, of course, a fantasy. Or is it? Is it an urban legend that Aunt Betsy is rich? No, she really did buy Intel at three pounds and has been living the good life ever since. Of course, not every stock is going to make you a multi-millionaire, but it does happen. Many penny stocks are simply stocks low in their value cycle and bound to skyrocket. Investing just a few thousand pounds can result in tens of thousands in return and investment return like no other. A well-placed penny stock purchase can pay off over many years, and sometimes in just a few years.