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The Young Man in Your Life Who Thinks He's a Stock Broker

Greater Than Financial | By Wakefield Hare | Fri Sep 02 2022

I am really thankful to know a lot of great young men. If you doubt your community’s youth, you need to spend more time with them. If adults would engage with younger generations, they’d quickly find that, yes, young people do spend a lot of time on their phones, but no, it does not mean they are losers. It usually means you haven’t tried hard enough to get them to look up.

That said, I want you to ask a young male in your life if he has a Robinhood account (or Webull, or another app for stock trading). Then ask him his thoughts on cryptocurrency. If you see his eyes light up, you have some work to do. If you get no reaction from him, you also have work to do, because you may have an apathetic guy in your life, and apathy is the single most dangerous risk for all humanity.

Right now, the young man in your life is at risk of being captivated by others who are posting stories on social media, some very real and many very fake, about the thousands of dollars they have made by investing in the stock market. And even many bragging about how much they’ve lost!

These stories are pulling on the parts of his heart and soul that are longing for an adventure. But be careful, that young man in your life also might not be so young in years. I’ve had some men in their 40s dig some pretty big financial holes for their families because of Robinhood. And consider that it also could be a lady in your life, although that is far less likely. 

(I have recently fielded messages from around a dozen young people interested in investing, and every single one of them was a male. Females and males are wired differently and perceptions of investing gives you some very clear contrasts between men and women. There are exceptions to those perceptions, and feel free to reach out and talk through them with me.)

Whether younger, older, male or female, there are strong odds seeds of financial destruction are being sown in your family at this very moment.

We are all at risk of getting caught up in the adventure and stories of investing, but if we wander into this playing field unaware, some real damage could be done to those we love.

So what do you do if you know someone who is taking an increased interest in the stock market or cryptocurrency? First, ask them about their personal finance course and what they learned. Personal Finance has been a requirement for graduation in Missouri for over a decade now so many have taken it. If they haven’t, I have a personal finance course online and I’d be thrilled to send you a code to access it for free. Just email me.

Next, ask them if they have read a book on investing. If yes, great, which one? If not, tell them you will not give them a bail out when their investing ventures inevitably go awry. There are very smart, experienced, cut-throat people in investing markets from all over the world and they don’t know or care who’s on the other side of a trade. They want inexperienced people to play their game.

Capitalism and investment are extraordinary concepts. It is an adventure to participate in it all. But no one wants to be a part of an adventure where they are left devastated. Protect the ones you love by asking them great questions.