About me

An engineer by trade, I am an individual investor with over 25 years of experience in the markets.  This time period includes the 1987 crash (of nearly 25% in one day), the Reagan bull market, the bear market in the early nineties, the continuation of the bull market in the late 90’s, the dot com bust, and the housing bubble and bust.  I have experience in stocks, bonds, warrants, options, hard commodities, investment partnerships, and S corporations.

In creating this weblog, I wished to share some of my experience and strategies with others.  I’ve found that many lessons in the market require you to lose money before you really believe them (see options trading), but I thought that some people might like to hear about some of the lessons I’ve learned and maybe avoid some of the mistakes I’ve made.

I also provide what I consider a fairly unique strategy for the individual starting out with just a small portfolio since most of the  advice already out there is suited for people who already have millions in the bank.  As I go, I’ll also offer some strategies for 401k investing, since many have now become investors by default and there is little help available, and some strategies for preserving wealth once you have obtained enough money to protect.  For more information on the blog, please see the “About the Small Investor Blog” page, accessible from the home page.

As you read, if you like what you see please post comments and/or subscribe for email alerts if you find things of value so that I know someone is reading this and it is worth continuing.  Even better, buy a copy of a book or buy anything  on Amazon through the advertising links in the posts and you’ll help give me a reason to continue the blog.  I’m also willing to take questions and discuss specific areas you’re interested in, so please feel free to ask.

Also, please refer this blog to friends if you feel it is of interest.  The address is https://smallivy.wordpress.com .

I am not a financial planner and I do not intend my posts to be financial planning advice, just information about how to trade securities, lessons learned, a strategy for growing wealth quickly, and some basic information.  Investing involves risk and loss of capital is possible – it is not for everyone.  You should seek the advice of professional advisors and/or do your own research before making any investment decision.

24 thoughts on “About me

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  1. Just found your blog, most interesting, helpful, informatiive. Liked the pieces on short selling. I’ve been hestate, read, afraid to do that, but at some piont need to experience it with a small amount. Best wishes on your blogging. I picked up my knowledge through investment clubs, National Association of Investors Corporation. Found out I don’t have time but now nearer retirement, do have some. Will read more of your articles. Thanks

  2. I have just come across this blog. It is brilliant!!!
    Especially, because it presents things from the perspective of a beginner to investing.
    I fully agree. Most of the advice available out there are essentially for people who already have millions and billions in their bank account.
    So far, I don’t. So thanks.

      1. Hello Smallivy,

        I am a stay at home mom looking for advise to invest a small inheritance…I do not and would not know where to start it all seem like an ancient foreign language to me..I do not have a 401k or any of that.. the money is just sitting there in a bank account but I feel it would better serve me else where…How can someone like me learn to manage and invest money???

      2. Hello Wendy,

        The first thing to do is to start learning, which comes from reading. On thing to do is to see previous posts on this blog, in particular scroll down to the “posts by category” in the right margin and go through the posts listed under “for the new investor: https://smallivy.wordpress.com/category/for-the-new-investor/“. Also look at the book recommendations: https://smallivy.wordpress.com/category/book-recommendations/.

        Vanguard also has a lot of good information and tools to help. The boggleheads (see the Blogroll) is an excellent site regularly visited by many professional money managers that follow the investing philosophy of Jack Bogle, who founded Valguard.

        When you’re ready to invest, you can go into mutual funds (again, see Vanguard since they have the lowest fees around) or individual stocks. The latter takes more care and feeding and is more risky than mutual funds and therefore is more suited to people who have a long time horizon and an income independant from investing. I would just say to remember that you can lose money, particularly in the short term, when investing. You will certainly lose money in the long term in a bank account due to inflation, however.

        A final choice is to go to a professional financial advisor for help. If you decide to do this, find one that is willing to teach you how to invest, rather than just invest for you. He/she should explain what you are doing and why you are doing it. A good source for these individuals is under the “endorsed local providers” on the Dave Ramsey site: http://www.daveramsey.com.

        Thanks for reading,


  3. Hi,

    Found your blog while searching for info on investing in stocks. I like to read more, but would rather have an RSS feed rather than having emails sent to me (I get enough emails as is). I don’t see an option on your site but I’m pretty blind sometimes. Please let me know, thanks!

  4. Leon-
    Thanks for the question/suggestion. I’ve added an RSS link under the email suscription option at the upper right. Go there and there is a link to subscribe via RSS there.


  5. Just across this from Google search. Immediately bookmarked it for further study. Thanks for using understandle, concrete terminology and common sense.

  6. Just found your blog, most interesting, helpful, informatiive. Liked the pieces on short selling. I’ve been hestate, read, afraid to do that, but at some piont need to experience it with a small amount. Best wishes on your blogging. I picked up my knowledge through investment clubs, National Association of Investors Corporation. Found out I don’t have time but now nearer retirement, do have some. Will read more of your articles. Thanks

    1. I know fairly little, other than that they are a currency created by some sort of computer code, that their value fluctuates fairly rapidly at times, and that they are used quite a bit for criminal activity. Whether they will become/are a viable currency yet, I’m not sure.

  7. I just found your blog. Looking forward to following and reading more on your expertise. Right now my family is in paying-down-debt mode, so I think this will be good to help us once we’re paid off 🙂

    1. Great – glad to have a new reader. I don’t tend to say much on paying down debt because people like Dave Ramsey already cover that very well, but hopefully some of the savings and money allocation tips will help. I’m also hoping people find the site before they go into debt, because those are the ones who will retire with tens of millions of dollars if they follow these types of strategies their whole lives. Of course, even starting from 30 or 40 with moderate credit card debt, you can retire with dignity if you change things.

  8. Thanks for your comment! I am very interested in your blog! We’ve done the pay off debt thing and have started paying down our house and adding to a 401k. I enjoyed your run-down post of financial planning today. It totally fits with where we are.

    1. Thank you for the comment as well. I like your tips on your blog on saving money while your are starting careers/families. That is where a lot of people get deep into debt which makes it difficult for them for the next couple of decades.

  9. I love your blog. So many blogs and books are geared to those investors that have a lot of money to invest, but yours truly target small investors. Thanks for sharing and keep it up:-)

  10. Small Investor, I have just come across your blog; so, I haven’t, as yet, read enough to make judgement. In reading the “About Me” introduction, I noticed that you seem to have been investing for roughly 30 years. When you mentioned that you are not a “financial planner”, I took particular notice. Frankly, a CFP certificate hanging on a wall means literally nothing. Experience, and learning from it, is what really counts!

    Consider when you are getting on an airliner, perhaps for an overnight flight across one of our great oceans. Who would you want to see in the cockpit? Several young men or women, who might remind you of your grandson or daughter, with newly minted wings? Or would you prefer to see pilots who look like they have “been there-done that” many times before?

    Sure seek professional advice; but, be sure to do your own homework. And over time, as your portfolio grows, keep studying, asking what happened, and WHY? As a financial advisor (or 39 years) during the past decade and a half, I encountered many FAs who just couldn’t answer those questions–or learn from history. Some even hid from their anxious clients.

    1. Welcome – I hope you enjoy the blog. I agree that experience has a value beyond degrees. I wouldn’t be the one to talk to about which annuity to buy or minimizing taxes in retirement, but I have a lot to share on investing and money management.

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