As Bitcoin price has climbed from $1k to $15k this year, I get asked quite a lot – how to actually buy it?
When I decided to buy some Bitcoins in 2013, it was like wild west – price of BTC was skyrocketing from $100 to $1000, everyone was writing about it and exchanges were crashing from lame code, high load and hacker attacks.
At that time the biggest exchange in Europe was bitcoin-24.de, so I opened an account there, bought some Bitcoins and did some trades. But then it started receiving DDoS attacks and at one point transactions were duplicating.
If I bought 1 BTC, suddenly I received 2 BTC. If I sold 2 BTC, I got money for 4 BTC, etc. I got lucky to withdraw some bitcoins, but of course the withdrawals stopped working very soon, and I was left with an account “worth” 60k EUR and 7.7 BTC.
Received an email from Mark, who asked for advice about investing in P2P platforms:
Basically, ~127k EUR is sitting around and not working. I do have Bondora and I was one of the early investors in 2012 when it was called Isepankur. Problem there is I don’t understand what’s going on there-it is displaying my ROI as 15% but everyone is saying that it’s not real because they don’t calculate defaults correctly and real returns are ridiculously low.
Considering all of the above, do you recommend investing in Mintos and/or Twino?How would you suggest getting enough math skills to be able to figure out what’s going on with my account at Bondora, how to calculate XIRR(not sure?) etc.
If not Mintos/Twino, what passive strategies would you recommend to put the capital I have sitting idle to work.
When I opened my DNB Trade account in 2015, my first trades were a bit crazy, among them:
- $YHOO – lost only 4%, but should not have touched it at all
- $NBG – National Bank of Greece, lost only 25% (now delisted)
- $CHAD, $CHAU – ETFs with 2x leverage that follow CSI 300 Index
- $SUNE, $ZINC, $VRS – lost nearly 100%, delisted or went bankrupt
I tested my risk tolerance by starting with the most risky stuff I could find and when I got burned, moved to more safe things like sector ETFs with no leverage.
My most expensive lesson was from buying $UWTI – where I managed to lose about 80%, which amounted to more than $3700:
My experience with banks
I did my first stock trades in 2009 – used Swedbank and bought stocks in Baltic stock market. Later I also made couple of trades in US market, but was not happy about it. Paying $25-27 per each trade seemed too high. If I invest $1000 in one company and pay $50 in commissions to Swedbank, then I need to get at least 5% return just to cover trading fees. Not cool. Spent 250 EUR in fees.
If you read my last post „How to buy options in Latvia?” then you know I planned to open a trading account in Norvik bank. In this post I will describe the process in more detail.
It is not easy to trade options in Latvia, so I will describe the process how to get started and what to expect in terms of costs.
If we look at things very simply, there are 3 main options, how to invest in stock market:
1. Select stocks yourself
You can create a stock portfolio of companies that you believe in and hope that these companies will grow and make you rich. But to get good results over the long-term, you will also need to spend lot of time learning about stock market. If you don’t have time and will pick stocks without doing any research, you risk getting burned.
For example – this is how GoPro stock chart looked like after IPO – price shot up 300% from $30 to $90 in just 3 months. Imagine, how high it could go in 2 years? Let’s say, you would have invested $990 and bought 11 GoPro shares in Oct 2014, paying $90 for each share.
Couple of months ago I wrote about peer to peer lending platforms in Latvia. After that I also decided to invest some money in them and came up with following strategy:
- No manual selection of specific loans, use Auto Invest feature to make investments automatically and avoid spending my time.
- Invest only in loans that have Buy Back guarantee.
- Even if Mintos and Twino have different returns for similar type of loans, invest in both of them to diversify and in worst case scenario loose only 50% of money in case one of these P2P platforms go bankrupt.
- Invest only in loans with the shortest term – 1 month – to get the best liquidity. So if I want to get back all my investment, it should take maximum 1 month for any remaining loans to be repaid, or in case – if some of them are paid late, then maximum another 1-2 months for the Buy back guarantee to pay back the late loans.