Visit Your Local PBS Station PBS Home PBS Home Programs A-Z TV Schedules Watch Video Donate Shop PBS Search PBS

That Money Show
Home Features One Minute MBA Making Change Money Talks Money Makers Glossary Resources
Making Change
Making Change Illustration
Also of Interest

Saving Money
Car Insurance
Home Insurance
Credit Cards
Life Insurance
Children & Money
Mortgage Refinancing
Managing Debt
Home Budgeting
Home Equity Loan
Disability Insurance
Retirement Planning
Your Credit Report
Mutual Funds
Lower Your Taxes
Winning Team
Managing Stress
Managing Time
Marketing 101
Setting Goals
Delegating Tasks
Difficult People
Money Skills
Public Relations
Good Communication
Leadership Skills
The Right Attitude
Habit of Success

Understanding Mutual Funds

Investing wisely is something that everyone should strive for, and mutual funds are a good place to begin. If you are a novice to the world of investments, Mutual Fundsmutual funds may seem like a foreign language to you. But once you understand what mutual funds are and how they work, you can begin to reap the benefits of a wise investor.

Mutual funds are simply funds that are managed by investment companies that pool your money with that of thousands of other people who have interests similar to your own. The money is then invested in stocks, bonds, and other securities. There are many benefits to investing in mutual funds, including:

  • Professional management - You get the advantage of having your money managed by people who have years of investment experience.

  • Low cost - Most mutual funds cost less than 1 percent per year in broker fees.

  • You can invest smaller amounts of money - As long as you meet the low minimum investment requirements, you can take advantage of mutual funds.

  • No stock brokers or salespeople - With no load (commission free) mutual funds, you won't have to worry about someone pressuring you into buying additional investments.

  • Accurate audited financial information - The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) requires that all historical data of mutual funds be included in all prospectuses.
If you are serious about wanting to invest in mutual funds, find a financial advisor whom you trust and have them teach you everything from A to Z about them. Don't be afraid to ask questions if there is something you don't understand. Take time to learn how to read the prospectus, which every mutual fund company must produce. Most of the time the real important information can be found in the first few pages, so don't worry about having to spend a long time wading through a bunch of legal mumbo jumbo that means nothing to you.

See also: Retirement Planning, Saving Money, and Managing Debt

Back to Top
  Sponsored by TIAA-CREF
Thirteen/WNET New York PBS Online T1 56k