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My worst investment ever....
Old 01-08-2012, 12:31 AM   #1
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My worst investment ever....

Tell us your Worst investment ever story. Mine is:

I bought a beautiful penthouse condo with views of the ocean in a resort town in Mexico in 2005 as the complex was nearing completion. I knew the developer through another successful complex he had built in the area. I thought I had done my due diligence. Within the first 6 month, there was a gas explosion in one of the units and one of the workers died. Within the next 6 months the North building, next to mine started to crack and collapse. Turns out they built the complex over a cenote (limestone over underground rivers) without doing the proper engineering. The developer tried to blame a hurricane, insurance didn't cover anything. The north building was torn down but not all the way, lawsuits were filed, nothing was cleaned up and the place looks like a war-torn. Years spent hiring attorneys and fighting, but no settlement. Finally wrote the investments off our taxes. What a shame....so much potential and such a crooked country!
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Old 01-08-2012, 01:01 AM   #2
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I spent about three days as a Wade Cook disciple. 'Nuff said.
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Old 01-08-2012, 01:10 AM   #3
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Ever hear of Star Partners? It was a limited partnership sold back in the 80's through financial "advisers" of movies. They'd bundle several movies into an offering, a couple of good ones and the other 4 or 5 would be so so. Moonstruck was the good movie in one offering. Back then I was totally uninformed and made dumb mistakes like this. Each unit cost $5000, I bought one and it almost returned my $5000. Before I realized what a crap deal this was about a year later they offered Star Partners II and I bought 2 units for $10,000, it did not even come close to giving me back my money.

Back in that same time frame a local bank was "said to be a good buy" I forget why today. So 3 of us bought stock in it, I put in $5000. The value of the stock went down almost immediately and when it became a penny stock I just held on hoping for some recovery since it was almost worthless at that point. It went to zero.

I wonder how much that $20,000 would have been worth today 25+ years later knowing what I know now ie Vanguard index funds? Makes me sick just to consider it!
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Old 01-08-2012, 01:10 AM   #4
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It's too bad about your condo deal. Our worst investment was a church bond that ended up with default in 6 months. We were out about $20K (back then) or $40K in 2012 dollars.
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Old 01-08-2012, 02:28 AM   #5
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ESPP

Waited too long for stock to go up.
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Old 01-08-2012, 05:47 AM   #6
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Too many cars and boats in my younger years. Not an investment but a lost opportunity to invest more.
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Old 01-08-2012, 07:26 AM   #7
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MGM, down 65%, still holding it, must be a gambler. Looked at it for a while before buying, sin stocks had held up well in previous recessions. I think their going into China did not payoff.
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Old 01-08-2012, 08:16 AM   #8
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A diamond ring in 1977. $1,100 down and every nickel I made for the next five years. At least I came out of it not owing anything, and much wiser.
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Old 01-08-2012, 08:17 AM   #9
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First investment was a variable annuity sold by a snake. The only good news is that I was young so the investment wasn't as big as it could have been... and I figured out what a rip off it was before too long so I could cut my losses early and reinvest what was left in something worthwhile. I still remember the salesperson's face and it's over 20 years. Happy thoughts... happy thoughts...
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Old 01-08-2012, 09:26 AM   #10
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dot com stocks, ... nuff said.
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Old 01-08-2012, 11:17 AM   #11
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I bought an expensive condo in 2008 in a very expensive part of the country, two weeks before Lehman's implosion. The value of my condo has been going down since. I still like the place though.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Coloradoblonde View Post
Tell us your Worst investment ever story.
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Old 01-08-2012, 12:06 PM   #12
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Years ago, a market timing strategy for my IRA set up by a financial planner.

But this was a blessing in disguise as this scared me enough to pull out shortly afterwords and learn that the "experts" don't really have my best interests at heart.
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Old 01-08-2012, 12:09 PM   #13
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I once had Worldcom stock that was worth $30,000. Now it's worthless.
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Old 01-08-2012, 12:16 PM   #14
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Invested in a technology mutual fund shortly before the dot.com meltdown. Luckily, I did not have that much in it.
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Old 01-08-2012, 12:55 PM   #15
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I bought 1000 shares in an IPO (first and last time) for purely sentimental reasons in 1996 (Cal-Pearson Yachts, trying to restart themselves under new owners). By 1998 the shares were worth zip/zero/nada/zilch. They just shut the doors and everyone walked away one day, no organized bankruptcy - just vanished. I couldn't reach anyone to find out what happened, finally caught the CFO there one day, we had a civil conversation and he told me there was no one there and no assets, just massive liabilities. Fortunately the shares were only $1 each, so the loss wasn't significant. I chalked it up as a cheap lesson re: IPO's for me at least...
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Old 01-08-2012, 02:01 PM   #16
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dot com stocks, ... nuff said.
+1

My loss from the 2000 tech crash was some $50,000. Did not have much money to invest until 1999 when I got a small inheritance and put most of it into dot coms and other tech, which to the beginning investor looked like a way to super fast FIRE. An important lesson learned. Luckily happened when losing about half of my portfolio value did not equal a large sum yet. Now, about 2 years to FI the impact would be much different.
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Old 01-08-2012, 03:39 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Coloradoblonde View Post
Tell us your Worst investment ever story. Mine is:

I bought a beautiful penthouse condo with views of the ocean in a resort town in Mexico in 2005 as the complex was nearing completion. I knew the developer through another successful complex he had built in the area. I thought I had done my due diligence. Within the first 6 month, there was a gas explosion in one of the units and one of the workers died. Within the next 6 months the North building, next to mine started to crack and collapse. Turns out they built the complex over a cenote (limestone over underground rivers) without doing the proper engineering. The developer tried to blame a hurricane, insurance didn't cover anything. The north building was torn down but not all the way, lawsuits were filed, nothing was cleaned up and the place looks like a war-torn. Years spent hiring attorneys and fighting, but no settlement. Finally wrote the investments off our taxes. What a shame....so much potential and such a crooked country!
Great place to live. Just don't invest here if you don't live here. Playa del Carmen I presume? We have lived here a few months now and see what you mentioned...
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Old 01-08-2012, 03:44 PM   #18
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Sorry, off topic.

WCOM, SDS, BRCM, RMII, just to name a few.
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Old 01-08-2012, 03:44 PM   #19
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Enron bonds -- my broker/advisor said they were a sure bet. My $5000 went to $0. But it was small price to pay to learn not to trust brokers/advisors...
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Old 01-08-2012, 04:03 PM   #20
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Worldcom was the only one that totally crashed.
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