Stock investment wisdom from my grandpa

“You have to buy stocks the way you would a nice suit. Pick a high-quality, well-established brand — then wait for it to go on sale.” – my Opa.

Everyone knows investing in the stock market is about buying low & selling high, though intuition tends to make us act the opposite: if stock prices are down, we feel motivated to sell because we’re losing money and if they’re going up, we feel motivated to buy more because they seem to be money-makers.

I take my Opa’s advice. I actually wish I had more money to put more to use under his direction, but sadly I still don’t have a lot of cash to play with. Nevertheless I implement his strategy by watching big name companies, and waiting for a good price to buy. I watch the shares of many companies you might be familiar with:

Coca-cola, Pepsi, McDonald’s, Proctor & Gamble, Johnson & Johnson, Black & Decker, Kimberly Clark, Target, Mattel, Disney, Microsoft, Apple, Google, Telus, AT&T, Shaw, Netflix, and well, the list goes on. Some of these I already own, some of these I’ve bought & sold, some of these I’m waiting to go on “sale”, others I’m just watching and waiting for a collapse (or a revival) out of pure curiosity.

I keep some labor intensive spreadsheets when I’m bored, but generally I just check up on stock prices of these companies on my iPhone to see how they’re doing. After you watch a company for a few months and see the fluctuations in price, you start to recognize when is a good time to buy in. One of the main reasons I contribute to my brokerage account monthly is just so there’s ALWAYS some money in there so I can grab a good stock at a good price should the opportunity arise.

I haven’t been investing very long, but I’m amused to see my mock portfolio strategy has intensified rather than died off now that I’m using real money. For some reason I expected I would only watch the stocks I own, but I find I’m more interested in the market than ever.

Do you invest in the stock market? Do you have a strategy or follow any advice? Furthermore, is my Opa awesome or what?