While most of my investment portfolio is in index funds that track the broad market performance, I’m also a huge fan of buying individual stocks and ETFs. But, I don’t buy blindly. This habit (and not being a “buy and hold” investor) is what gives stock investing a bad name. When you invest correctly, buying individual stocks can build long-term wealth and help you (dare I say it?) beat the market!
The Best Investing Newsletters (According to Me)
Here are a few of my favorite investing newsletters and magazines. I’ve tried several over the years, but these are the ones I plan to stick with. For the average investor, you don’t need to spend more than $200 annually per newsletter.
The Motley Fool
Some of the first investing books I ever read were published by The Motley Fool. You can also access their stock
market picks with two different investing newsletters (more like an online investing service):
- Stock Advisor
- Rule Breakers —->(Read my Rule Breakers Review to see if it’s right for you)
Each service cost $99 annually. I subscribe to both. For most investors, Stock Advisor is the better of the two options. Read my Stock Advisor review to learn why.
You receive recommendations for “Steady Eddies” and potential high-flyers with sound company fundamentals. So, you get a healthy mix of growth and value investing.
Rule Breakers is a better fit for your speculating investments as its recommendations focus on companies that have high growth candidates. As of this writing, a fair amount of companies are foreign-based and you’ve probably never heard of most of them before. I didn’t at least.
I might receive a small commission if you subscribe to a Motley Fool product. Thank you if you do!
Kiplinger’s Personal Finance
So Kiplinger’s is a monthly magazine that offers money management tips and investing advice. I’ve subscribed to Kiplinger’s since I graduated from college in 2008. Their annual subscription is very reasonable at $12 for first-time subscribers and $24 a year after that.
I personally pay attention to the following columnists each month:
- James Glassman (my “if I only read one article from Kiplinger’s a month” article)
- Kathy Kristof (shares her own investment portfolio performance)
- Kiplinger ETF 20 (their favorite 20 ETFs)
- Kiplinger 25 (their favorite 25 mutual funds)
- Monthly Featured Stock Topic (Rotating categories with different investing ideas)
Granted the last decade has been very investor-friendly, I’ve had a couple of investment ideas with a 100+ return (CSX and QTEC) and a few others nearing the 50%+ range.
For the first few years, I exclusively used their mutual fund recommendations because I didn’t feel my portfolio was sufficiently diversified to trade individual stocks. Since my previous 401k was with Vanguard, I used their recommendations to invest in any available 401k funds too.
I might receive a small commission if you subscribe to Kiplinger’s. Thank you if you do!
Bonus Article: Read my Kiplinger’s Review for more information.
Early Warning Report
One of my favorite personal finance authors for teens and adults of any age is Richard Maybury, who also uses the pen name of Uncle Eric for a series of economics-related novels for young adults. If I could recommend any book about economics, it would be Whatever Happened to Penny Candy?
I primarily subscribe to his Early Warning Report newsletter for his geopolitical analysis and his “Austrian economics” (i.e. laissez-fair economics) perspective.
He also makes stock recommendations and I’ve acted on a few, but it’s not the primary reason I subscribe to this publication. Reading is my favorite hobby and I look forward to Mr. Maybury’s latest monthly issue.
You can read a free sample issue without having to submit your contact information!
I don’t receive a kickback from EWR if you subscribe.
Global Changes and Opportunities Report
GCOR runs along the same vein as the Early Warning Report but it’s more focused on investing. Mr. Jim Powell (no relation to the current Fed chief) makes recommendations and analysis on a variety of large-cap stocks, ETFs, and non-traditional investments for a complete portfolio.
You can also read a sample issue to get a taste for Mr. Powell’s investing insights and global outlook.
I don’t receive a kickback from GCOR if you subscribe.
So Finimize is more along the lines of Seeking Alpha’s Wall Street Breakfast which gives you a summary of the market’s happenings. If you want a quick 5-minute read of the market’s key events from yesterday, this is a fun product. I don’t use it so much for stock picks as I do to get a quick idea of what the market is doing.
The best part is that it’s free!
I might receive a kickback from Finimize if you subscribe through this link. (It depends how often you open their messages).
Morningstar is best known for the mutual fund rating systems. They also analyze stocks. I enjoy reading their resources from the Morningstar website and also through my online stock broker. You can read articles for free and get basic membership that’s free.
For more in-depth membership, you’ll need to upgrade to premium membership ($199 a year). The premium plan is worth it if you like researching company fundamentals. You can start a 14-day free trial of Morningstar Premium to see if a premium membership is worth it for you.
I might receive a kickback if you become a premium membership.
P.S. Morningstar also has one of the best investing podcasts too! Click to see why.
I encourage you to consider getting one of the following entry-level newsletters:
- Stansberry’s Investment Advisory
- True Wealth
- Retirement Millionaire
Each newsletter has a slightly different investing strategy, but primarily invest in sound companies. I’d say True Wealth is the most speculative of this bunch.
The standard annual price is $199 for each newsletter, but if you look on the internet for offers, you can usually find an annual subscription for $99 with a little digging. You can also comb through their Daily Wealth emails to find offers too.
Of all the recommendations, the Stansberry products are the most detailed and structured. Each month, you receive a new stock recommendation and a 5 or 6-page story and analysis on why you should invest in the stock or ETF. They also provide a “buy up to” price and a selling price.
While you can’t view a free sample issue, you do have a 30-day money-back guarantee. Just make sure you call to cancel during this time to get a full refund. I’ve done it.
If want to learn more about the Stansberry investing model, you can read founder Porter Stansberry’s latest ebook (The American Jubilee) on Amazon to learn more. I read this same book before I became a subscriber. Pay attention to the last 130 pages (Parts 5 and 6) to learn how to successfully analyze stocks.
I don’t receive a kickback from Stansberry Research if you subscribe to any of their products.
Another investment research service you may have heard about is Zacks. People who invest with Fidelity might be the most familiar with Zack research. You may also see Zacks free research reports on outlets like Yahoo! Finance.
You can try Zacks for free but you will need to become a premium member to see the full reserch report and lists like the Focus List which gives you 50 stock ideas for long-term investing. Premium members also see Zacks industry ranking tool which indicates if you should buy, hold, or sell a stock. Other investing services focus on specific strategies like ETFs, options, and specific-sized companies.
I don’t receive a kickback from Zacks if you subscribe to any of their products.
If you like dividend investing, Dividend.com offers premium reports you can use to focus on dividend growth investing. This option is different than many of the other stock investing newsletters on this list. Research tools include Dividend.com’s favorite dividend stocks to invest in, in-depth research reports, and key dividend reports including upcoming ex-dividend dates and 40+ years of company dividend history.
Another tool you might like is tracking your dividend history in the online platform. If you use several different online brokers, tracking your earnings all in one place makes it easy to calculate your future and lifetime dividend income.
Lite or Premium Plan
Two different premium plans are available. The Lite plan costs $99 per year and you get access to the “best stock lists,” in-depth company research, and the daily dividend newsletter to name a few perks.
The premium plan costs $149 yearly. You get extra benefits including a watchlist, dividend payout changes, data spreadsheet exports, and exclusive dividend articles.
I don’t receive a kickback from Dividend.com if you subscribe to any of their products.
If you’ve ever researched investing newsletters, you soon realize they could easily fill the magazine rack at Walmart. They are also pitching these “must buy” stocks to build their subscriber base. Stock Gumshoe is a free service that deciphers most of these newsletter teasers, so you don’t have to burn through your cash to buy yet another newsletter.
Travis (the Stock Gumshoe) even gives his analysis on the high-end newsletters that cost between $1,000 and $5,000 a year. He tells you which teasers are noise and which ones are legit. Unless you’re trading options or shorting stocks,
You can also buy a premium membership which is also very reasonable to become an “Irregular.” With this subscription, you get access to Travis’ Real Money Portfolio to see where his money is invested and you can also get a quick summary on each tease so you don’t have to read the entire article to get his opinion.
I don’t receive a kickback from Stock Gumshoe if you subscribe for a free or paid membership.
Should You Buy Every Monthly Recommendation from an Investing Newsletter?
Even though I subscribe to several investing newsletters, I don’t buy every recommendation. Here are a few reasons why I don’t every hot stock tip:
- I don’t agree with the company’s business model (i.e. tobacco stocks, moral issues, etc.)
- Don’t fully understand the company business model
- Don’t have enough money to buy everything
- Can’t adequately review the weekly performance of each stock
- The recommendation is too aggressive or risky for my liking (i.e. junior mining stocks)
Investing newsletters recommend stocks that they believe will make you money. It’s still up to you to decide if the recommendation is a good fit for your investment thesis.
Always Perform Your Own Due Diligence
Although there are times I trust a newsletter’s recommendation and buy the next trading day, I almost always research the company or ETF myself. I check the latest news to make sure I’m reading the entire story. After all, the job of newsletters is to write compelling content to sell you more newsletters (or their higher-priced options).
I’ve unsubscribed from several investing newsletters in the past because I didn’t buy their recommendations or their analysis didn’t add value.
Wait a Month Before Buying Your First Recommendation
You may also decide to wait a month or two before buying your first stock recommendation. Use this “waiting time” to get a feel for the newsletter’s strengths and weaknesses.
Ignore the High Dollar Pitches
With a traditional investing newsletter, you’re going to receive regular emails to buy the premium newsletters that cost at least $1,000 a year. Don’t feel like you need to invest in these newsletters. They usually invest in riskier trades or complex trades. If you can invest thousands of dollars at a time, these might be worth the “investment” but I and thousands of other investors have done perfectly fine with the basic newsletters.
Understand the Business Before Investing
It’s also important you understand how the business makes money. For instance, how do you know all the ways Amazon makes money? One hint is that it’s more than just selling Amazon Prime memberships.
More importantly, you should know how a business can lose money or lose market share. For example, what do you think is the next big trend? Do you want to invest in companies where lawsuits or controversy are common like tobacco, firearms, or pesticides?
If you need help understanding a business, don’t be afraid to ask a friend or family member. This is your money money we are talking about after all. Don’t forget you can always keep cash in a high-yield savings account if you don’t know what to invest in yet.
Why I Invest in Individual Stocks
It’s perfectly fine to only stick with investing in index funds that try to mimic the market’s movement. After all, it’s simple and efficient. Instead of spending your precious time reading stock tips and researching the pros and cons of a potential investment.
But, I hold a portion of my investment portfolio in stocks and actively managed ETFs that try to beat their index. Here are a few reasons why:
- Simply trying to match the market doesn’t “raise the bar”
- More risk=more reward (I’m in my young 30s and can weather the stock market volatility)
- Investing in the right stocks helped us get out of debt early
Most of my investments are in retirement accounts, but I also invest in stocks, ETFs, and even a few mutual funds in a taxable brokerage account. For cash, we don’t plan on using in the next three years and still want easy access to, we invest the excess for a higher earning potential.
These are a few of the reasons why I invest in stocks, but I don’t go it alone. Today, I’m going to introduce you to more “investing brain trust” for some of the resources I use to pick stocks. Yes, I still have a few losers (especially in 2018 because of the ongoing trade war spat), but I don’t plan on giving up soon.
I might have a slight addiction to investing newsletters. Partially because I use them to make informed investing decisions. And partially because I enjoy reading differing views on economic and geopolitical events.
What do you think are the best investing newsletters?
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