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our worst investments
Old 04-23-2006, 04:59 AM   #1
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our worst investments

okay ,fess up....whats your all time worst investments and what did you loose.....

panaco energy and gothic energy in the 90's when oil hit 10 bucks a barrell 38,000.00


for my wife before we got married it was alliance bernstein tech fund 34,000
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Re: our worst investments
Old 04-23-2006, 05:41 AM   #2
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Re: our worst investments

Mine was Sycamore Networks SCMR pronounced Suckmore. Lost a bundle back in the days when I could afford to lose a bundle. Dumb ass!


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Re: our worst investments
Old 04-23-2006, 05:55 AM   #3
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Re: our worst investments

Commodities -- only $5K but it was when I was in my 20s and $5K was a pile of money back then.
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Re: our worst investments
Old 04-23-2006, 06:44 AM   #4
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Re: our worst investments

In terms of dollar amount, my worst invesment was Vanguard Total Stock Market Index fund.* In the one year I owned it, I lost $30K in it.* I sold it to take the short-term loss to help on my taxes and bought similar (but not substantially identical) investments: SPY and MDY.
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Re: our worst investments
Old 04-23-2006, 07:09 AM   #5
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Re: our worst investments

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Re: our worst investments
Old 04-23-2006, 07:15 AM   #6
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Re: our worst investments

One of the biggest and worst investments I have made was in a financial advisor.
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Re: our worst investments
Old 04-23-2006, 07:57 AM   #7
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Re: our worst investments

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tadpole
One of the biggest and worst investments I have made was in a financial advisor.
Yes. I think we've all shared this one. Having the ones I have had over the years has slowed FIRE by at least 5 years.
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Re: our worst investments
Old 04-23-2006, 08:00 AM   #8
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Re: our worst investments

Graduate school.

I missed out on another round of generous stock options because I was part time for a couple of years.

Coulda retired a few years earlier.

Oh well............

Audrey
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Re: our worst investments
Old 04-23-2006, 08:10 AM   #9
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Re: our worst investments

Mine was an annuity when I was about 18. It was only for $1000, but I didn't know anything about them, and I certainly didn't have the financial discipline to leave it alone. So I got a crappy return (family FA made it sound so attractive) and then paid a penalty to get my money back.

Since I started trying to learn about finance, I've been lucky and have only had very minor setbacks of a few hundred dollars (knock on wood).
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Re: our worst investments
Old 04-23-2006, 08:24 AM   #10
 
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Re: our worst investments

I had too much $$$ in Company Stock. Lost $175K on paper in about 2 weeks. But overall I had a big gain. I should have diversified out of it.
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Re: our worst investments
Old 04-23-2006, 08:34 AM   #11
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Re: our worst investments

$7,500, my 1/2 in a no-lose oil (ironically enough) limited partnership ... I put up 1/2, and one of my college professors put up the other 1/2 of the unit. (As luck would have it, today I've posted info on the only two oil investments we've ever made.)

It wasn't wildcatting ... it was supposedly drilling on the edge of another proven, producing field.* The company only had to hit 2% of their projections for us to break even.* And, my college professor said "I've invested with these guys before".

We lost about 80% of our investments, as the field was nearly dry.

Afterwards, my professor said "I didn't make any money on those other deals either"!* *:* Told my wife I didn't know I had to ask about that part ... assumed he would have thought that was a material fact when he gave them a reference in the first place!* *
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Re: our worst investments
Old 04-23-2006, 09:39 AM   #12
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Re: our worst investments

Quest Communications - bought at the height of the fiber optic boom and sold at the low point of the bust - lost about $4K.
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Old 04-23-2006, 09:52 AM   #13
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Re: our worst investments

Firsthand Technology Value Fund. Invested nearly all my 401k in it at near the height of the dotcom boom. My 401k statements still show contributions much higher than the current balance.
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Re: our worst investments
Old 04-23-2006, 10:23 AM   #14
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Re: our worst investments

Hmmm

Having successfully made every investment mistake in the book over the decades - it's hard to pick just one.

Perhaps the gold mine in Colorado. Still have it - it won't sell.

heh heh heh heh heh
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Re: our worst investments
Old 04-23-2006, 10:57 AM   #15
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Re: our worst investments

Our worst investment was buying a day care. We lost about 50k before we pulled the plug. Too young to know what due diligence was at the time and paid dearly. Good thing we were LBOMs and DINKs at the time. Paid all debts in a year thanks to the those two ideals plus a six months deployment put us back in the black. The money from the deployment started our RE career and the rest you could say is history.
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Re: our worst investments
Old 04-23-2006, 11:18 AM   #16
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Re: our worst investments

My wife had too much of her employer's stock.* Between 1999 and 2003 we gave back about $800,000 of its gain.* Still sold at a profit...What a bummer!!!!


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Re: our worst investments
Old 04-23-2006, 11:47 AM   #17
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Re: our worst investments

As college juniors we had the chance to buy a life insurance policy that also offered a very low-interest loan against the policy's cash value. Most of us bought cars with them-- in 1980 a 6% car loan was a screamin' good deal.

But only if you borrowed the money. I ended up borrowing money from my grandparents at a lower interest rate and going my own way, but it never occurred to me to cancel the insurance policy. (Hey, I might have needed another loan someday!) Four years later I finally came to my senses (at the prompting of a friend) and killed it off. I don't remember the exact cash value but insuring the life of a single guy back then probably cost far more than the $100 check I was refunded.

Later, fresh outta college with the paychecks piling up, I didn't have any idea where to invest. My 1982 checking account was paying 10% interest but inflation was still eating us alive. People were investing in gold & jewels because "this time it's really different." Totally baffled, I called up a friendly Paine-Webber broker and ended up in a corporate bond fund. As the Fed kept raising rates to kill inflation, those monthly checks kept getting smaller.

In 1986 spouse and I got married (the best investment I ever made). We finally sat down with Business Week's mutual-fund ranking issue and noticed that Fidelity had the cheapest funds at only a 2-3% sales charge! I don't think I heard of Vanguard until well into the 1990s.

The lesson here is that LBYM and DCA can eventually overcome even loaded investments.
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Re: our worst investments
Old 04-23-2006, 11:52 AM   #18
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Re: our worst investments

DH and I not selling more of our company stock sooner was the biggest, even though we sold more and sooner than the great majority of our colleagues. But the Kool-Aid was so sweet!
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Re: our worst investments
Old 04-23-2006, 11:58 AM   #19
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Re: our worst investments

Tendency to have too much in cash is my problem - lack of reinvestment discipline which is why I've been moving to automatic reinvestments. JoJo
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Re: our worst investments
Old 04-23-2006, 12:00 PM   #20
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Re: our worst investments

Church bond (yield 18%). Invested $16K in 1987. The bond defaulted a year later.

A handful of penny stocks that went to almost $0.
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