Chapter 10. Finding and Buying Mutual Funds

In This Chapter

  • Seeing the advantages — and disadvantages — of mutual funds

  • Finding mutual funds online that fit your needs

  • Finding out where to buy and sell mutual funds online

  • Understanding funds' risk and return

  • Determining the best ways to buy mutual funds

Online investing isn't just for individual stock pickers. The Internet can also be used to pick, track, and monitor investments in mutual funds — funds that pool money from many investors so that it can then be invested in stocks, bonds, or other assets. By pooling money, mutual funds give small investors some of the benefits enjoyed by larger investors, especially the ability to spread money over many investments, or diversify. Mutual funds are the way most people invest. More than 93 million individual investors, and nearly half the nation's households, own a piece of mutual funds either directly or through a retirement plan like a pension fund. U.S. mutual funds hold more than $10 trillion in investor assets, which they pool together and use to buy stakes in investments.

In this chapter, I explain how online tools can maximize your success investing in mutual funds. I also show you how to use online tools to pick the right investments for you and walk you through the process of setting up an account to buy or sell the funds.

The Feeling Is Mutual: Understanding Mutual Funds

If all the work it takes to pick individual stocks, which I describe in Chapters 12 and 13, sounds exhausting, mutual ...

Get Investing Online For Dummies, 7th Edition now with the O’Reilly learning platform.

O’Reilly members experience books, live events, courses curated by job role, and more from O’Reilly and nearly 200 top publishers.