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June 19, 2000
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Re: What Should I do Now? Help
I don't know if what I have to say will help your current situation, but, it may help to make you a better investor in the years ahead. It's a story that has cost me 800,000.00, my house, my cars..my furniture, my health, my relationships..brought me down to literally my last dollars..and ruined my life.
And, in a strange kind of way, it involves this company.
A few years ago..back in early 1997, I bought Ctxs when it had fallen to the low teens. I remember it well, because it was one of the first stocks I had ever bought, starting out on this new career of investing for myself. Prior to that, I was conservative all the way. CD's...an IRA, treasurys, and a small mutual fund. And, I had done very well for myself. Worked many years, had my own company, and was very comfortable.
It was after I retired that I decided to start dabbling in the stock market. And Ctxs was one of those first stocks. I bought 2,000 shares at 13 or so..held them a couple days...and when the stock started down, I sold them for a small loss. And then, I moved on to the next one, and the next one. And, the next one.
That year..that happened over 1000 times. In 1998, over 2000 times. And last year..over 2500 times. I was not an investor at all. I was a trader, trading all day long..all week long..and all year long. I had broker confirmation slips stacked so high..I could barely believe it. I have no idea what happened to me. I became so addicted to trading. Losses became a game of nothing but trying to get even. It was always..if i could just get back to where I was..I'd stop. And down I went. 800,000, 700,000 600,000 500,000 400,000 300,000 200,000. At 200,000, I still had my house, my cars. I told myself this had to stop. There was no way I was going to lose more. But, it didn't stop. I put it all on 4 stocks..and every single one lost. I was down to 10,000.00. I had no job. I had to sell my house. And everything else I owned. And, I did that. And got an apartment. And then, I had money again.The money from my house, and from selling my expensive cars, and buying a cheaper one. That was 8 mos ago.
Today..That is all gone. I have 850.00 left. I am so numb, I can't feel anything anymore. I don't feel bad for myself, and no one reading this should either. I don't feel anything. What I do feel is that in those years, in all of this experience, I have something to say. And that is that investing is the only way to go about the stock market. Make sure that NOTHING you buy is ever that significant an amount that it can wipe you out. Make sure that you are fully diversified. That you buy stocks..and stick with them. Keep some money aside for situations like Ctxs had today. If you still like the stock, they are buying opportunities. And most importantly, do not treat the markets like I did. Trading everything constantly. It's a long and painfull death, certainly for your finances, and maybe for you as well.
So, why do I post this on the CTXS board? Well, those 2,000 shares that I bought at 13 back when I started this in early 1997 would today have a split adjusted cost of 1.65. At Ctxs's high..In 3 years..I would have had a 6300% gain. My 26,000 investment would have been worth around 1.65 Million dollars. And, even after todays huge decline..I would still have been up 1300% in 3 years. That 26,000 investment would be worth around 350,000.
Instead of investing, I chose a different path.
Now I have nothing.
Nothing at all.
Good luck to all of you.
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