Investment Strategy of a 27-Year-Old Former Stock Trader Earning $1 Million
Lauren Simmons got a crash course in the financial world when she became the youngest full-time female trader on the New York Stock Exchange in 2017, aged 22.
Simmons, now 27, left Wall Street after two years to become an entrepreneur. She earned $650,000 last year and is on track to gross $1 million in 2022 from projects including speaking engagements, brand partnerships, book and movie deals, and a concert. hosting with streaming show”Go public.”
But despite his roughly two years on the floor, “I didn’t start investing until after the March 2020 crash, and I don’t regret it,” Simmons told CNBC Make It.
His investment mindset
Simmons says she has heard many other NYSE traders say they have not personally invested in the stock market. “A lot of men in the trading room have been through at least three or four recessions now, and they think you can’t beat the market,” she says.
And while Simmons herself worked at the NYSE, she only earned $12,000 a year and save 85% of her income by living with her family and not going out. Using his money for anything other than a subway card, let alone investing, wasn’t exactly his priority.
That changed in the spring of 2020 when Simmons opened a brokerage account with around $300. In February, he held about $6,000.
When it comes to investing, Simmons lives by two principles: First, she wanted to make sure she was financially sound and able to cover her basic expenses before she started investing. Second, she wanted to do a lot of research into companies and funds where she felt her money could work.
“I’m very careful,” she said. “I need to have the statistics, data and information that helps me make an informed decision before investing.”
She refuses to invest in crypto
This mindset also means she stays away from cryptocurrency.
“I refuse to spend money on crypto,” says Simmons. “I believe that a digital currency will be permanent and will remain in our infrastructure. But at the moment it is highly speculative for me.”
Simmons thinks cryptocurrency will eventually centralize, but she doesn’t think it will be bitcoin or ether. “I think it will be entirely new”, at that time, “yes, of course, I will put my money in this new digital currency.”
Financial experts say cryptocurrency is a risky and speculative investment and you should only invest what you can afford to lose.
Beyond the marketplace, Simmons is investing in several women- and black-owned startups in tech and beauty. When backing a company, she is looking for a good product, of course, but more than that, she is looking for a strong founder. She likens it to how people pay attention to Tesla because they believe in Elon Musk: “They invest in his vision,” Simmons says.
“I have the same mindset. Do I believe in this person’s potential to be able to grow their business where they say they are going, while still believing in the product?”
Simmons is particularly passionate about supporting founders led by women and minorities who do not have the same access to capital as white men. By doing so, Simmons hopes to “pay it forward” for underrepresented individuals who “will be story makers in the future.”
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