Welcome to CAPS
Hi and welcome to the CAPS family. We have some really great people here. They answer questions, they are fun to talk to, they are passionate about what they believe in, they argue (boy, can they argue -- especially politics). We even have a few black sheep in the family. I love it, and I hope you will too!
There is a danger of information overload in the beginning. When I started I had loads of questions, so I asked. Some of the blogs that got really great answers and that could give you an idea of how you can use CAPS best are here. So are blogs written by others that have helped me or showed real information that needed to get out. Read the blogs. Get an idea of what you like and what you want to try. We are Glad to have you here. The More, The Merrier!
A word about the features on CAPS. There is a box under the Rec box called Follow. If you like a blog or want to come back later, click that word. Follow changes to Following. You now have a 'Following' tab on your homepage. No one else can see it. You can keep up with any blog of interest, and the blogs pop to the top when more comments are added.
Favorites can be used to pick out those you want to follow because you like their writing, their picks (which are displayed each day in an update), or because you like the sort of person they are. On the Quick Stats page for the person is a line under the name "Add member as a favorite," which after being clicked, changes to 'Member is a favorite.' It is a high compliment.
Recs are a way of showing agreement with a post or the discussion that it has started. Sort of like applause. I am expecting some discussion on the way I have interpreted these features and some additional features that need to be added to the mix. For now, moving to blogs.
The General Information
- These two are a couple of my own questions. I started out not knowing much about investing terms or the current market and economy. I was confused by a term and suspected that there was more to it than Wikipedia would provide, so I asked CAPS. I got my answers in a more understandable form.
- Also, when I first started into CAPS, I was concerned about the economy (specifically, my personal economy). I got more help than I could have imagined. If you are considering any investing, or even if you are not, please check this out. The information is incredible and it comes from a number of really knowledgeable people.
- From MFBriguy, the lazy man's way to a CAPS score of 99+. Just a note here, he subscribes to several Motley Fool services and follows them in his CAPS picks so you have a bit of info here on them as well.
- On general CAPS behavior and information, redneckdemon has it down in Lessons Learned in 2008. I wish I had read this before I started into CAPS. As a first time blogger, it would have been priceless.
- This blog asks about collecting the lucky charms that are at the top of some of the CAPS pages.
- One of my favorite posts to show how CAPS can really give you inside information is Jazzy33's In 2009: Be a HOG!!! HOG is the symbol for Harley Davidson and the comments went back and forth.
Who should you listen to among all of these people? RonChapmanJr's Favorite (but relatively unknown) CAPS Players? brings together some of the most incredible hidden gems of the CAPS stock picking world - nominated by some of the not so hidden gems of our CAPS world. Check out the people referred to, but don't forget to spend some quality time looking at the posting CAPS members as well!
The Stock Picks
Frequently, someone will give you information about a terrific stock, including all of the financial details. Will you get straight out information from people who know what they are talking about on CAPS? Sure! Should you jump in and invest (CAPS or real life) without carefully checking it for yourself? NEVER! The author of the blog expects that you will do your own research!
- Check Chris Graley on Silver for a great example.
- Dividends4life offers an analysis of Lowe’s home improvement chain.
- Or you might like SharpSEO who has a breakdown of stats in Men's Warehouse: The Bull Case.
- The ultimate? How about this: Run by Solarisking, the All-Star Portfolio has a list of stocks picked by the absolute top Fools in the game. These people have been here for over 6 months and are still in the top 1% - a feat that gets harder, the longer you are here. If you click on the STATS tab at the top, you can find the portfolio itself, complete with a reason for each pick and the name of the CAPS member responsible --- SWEET!
The Commentary or World View
If you like your political commentary with satire, check out the blogs by DaretothREdux.
If you prefer straight economic discussion, you want to meet whereaminow. He will discuss, debate, or inform if you are interested in economic theory, politics, sociology, or any number of topics. He is also incredibly enjoyable to read!
And finally there are the warnings. CAPS members will share the information when they know of problems,
- Toronian has a warning that should be up in Big Red Lights at the entrance to the blog - Warning, Fools Ahead - No, that's not his title - Just check his blog post. Save yourself some headaches.
- From Tastylunch, information about penny stocks in How to Spot Penny Stock Frauds.
- From MagicDiligence, 10 Red Flags in Financial Statements.
- TMFSinchiruna provides a warning against purchasing cars before checking to insure that the title is clear. Check out Buyer Beware: Struggling Auto Dealers Selling Cars with Unpaid Liens.
We have a lot of folks using different types of analysis on the stock market. A sampling:
GoodVibe4Ever started the drive to types of analysis with his Technical Analysis class on Elliott Wave Theory which spawned a chatroom community. My favorite post of all time? Trading Rules for Being in The Stock Market. PRICELESS! Also check out how to trade Ultra ETF's if you like to live dangerously -- and know that there is a wealth of information between the two.
Have you ever considered Astrology as a basis for stock-market analysis? Many Fools won't, and that's okay, but for anyone interested check out The Astrology of the Market by Kstarich. It is very complex, but if you mark the dates down, you have the gist of what she is trying to tell you.
From a most amazing new CAPS member, binve has written a number of very good blogs. Try one of these to get a basic understanding of the market for the moment:
- Technical Investing Themes: MacroTrends, USDX, Oil, Gold, S&P500, etc.
- Market Thoughts and Analysis: Potential Turning Point This Week and Some Important EWT Observations
Please note that this is not a "required reading list." It is just that the amount of information on this site is phenomenal, and it can overwhelm you even if you are not new to the site. I am merely trying to share the wealth, so to speak, so that you get off to a really great start. If you find a blogger that you really enjoy, you can add that person to your list of favorites, and go back and read more that the blogger has written. If you find a really good post, and join in to comment or question, remember to check the REC box. This lets the writer know that the subject did interest people and more on the subject might be well received. There are CAPS members willing to help on a number of topics and they are great - Absolutely, totally fantastic! TMF is lucky to have this resource and now you have it too!
Fool on and enjoy!