Yes, I've been incredibly stupid. But if nothing else I hope everyone who reads this will not be sucked into the false hopes and exaggerated claims that lead me into the mess I've created today.
2016 was supposed to be the best year. After 5 hard years of working 2 jobs and grabbing overtime when ever I could everything was coming togeather and the dream of owning our own home was within reach.
Over 5 years I'd slowly been able to get rid of our debts and save a deposit, spending days and weeks at a time away from home and my family. It wasn't going to be forever and the benefits would be worth it in the end. I kept telling myself that and by Christmas last year it appeared the struggle had been worth it.
On the 4th January I woke up happy. It would be a good year. Less busy than before and lots of opportunities to look forward to. Spending more time with the kids and "having a life". Now, less than 6 weeks later 2016 has turned into a living nightmare with no good ending in site.
Please please please do not do what I did.
Last year in August I got a text message from a friend. Click on this link and take a look at the investment company I've been following. I'm getting great returns. Sounds interesting. I'll check it out.
It wasn't a scam or illegal - just clever marketing and high profile targeted advertising designed to suck in inexperienced investors and the gullible.
But not what I was interested in. Too high risk and not where I wanted to be investing. Then the emails start. Targeted, specific emails designed to reach the very parts of you that you had given as reasons for not being involved. Don't worry, its safe. We do all the research and have access to information not available to every day investors. Our size opens doors and the important decision makers seek us out to show us the best opportunities coming up.
On and on for weeks. Look see what happened with this stock. If you had invested just $5,000 12 months ago you'd be holding a portfolio worth $65,000 today!! But don't worry. We know what the next opportunities are and you won't miss out again.
Finally I decided to give it a go. Just a small amount. It wouldn't hurt if it wasn't a success. Small investment, small return. Oh. Maybe I'll do that again. Just a little bit more this time. But no. That's not how the "professional investors" do it. You need to spread your investment across 3, 4 or 5 different stocks. That way when 1 of them goes up you'll have the best chance of holding the right stock. And don't worry. When that 1 goes up you can still sell the rest.
So I followed the advice. It was safe. I'd make some good money and be able to enjoy a few luxuries that we had done without over the last years. Some new things for the kids. If it goes well maybe we can upgrade the car?
And then January arrived. Everything was ok. Nothing spectacular but "we just need the company purchase to be completed and this stock will skyrocket. You missed the last spike when the announcement was made. Just hang on a little bit longer and enjoy it.
Ok. A little bit longer. Then disaster. Everything is crashing. I've got to sell now before I loose more.
But no. "That's not what the professionals do" Now is the time to buy more while everyone else is getting out. When it turns around the cheaper stocks will be worth way more. Don't follow the heard.
Week 1 - its still going down. Not a lot just slowly each day. Week 2. Down again. I can't afford this and it's getting very serious. The stress is unbelievable and I'm not sleeping. Constantly "researching" the market to find out more information. Addicted to being online so I can follow the market and not miss the jump when it happens. Week 3. Disaster. Everything is dropping and I've lost most of my investment. "Don't worry. We know which ones are the best stocks to hold. Sell the others and buy more of these ones. They have the best business model going forward and you'll be able to get everything back with this company." I feel like I'm in a nightmare and don't know how to get out. I need to hold on til the end of January. Thats when the announcement is due and everything will be ok. I'll borrow more and that will cover everything when the purchase completes.
It's now 7 weeks into 2016 and nothing has gone right. I can't borrow anymore money and everything is lost. The "professionals" are no where to be seen because "your not following our advice. You should be taking advantage of this opportunity to buy more".
I've got NO more money. Oh. Bye.
No announcement. No sudden climb in the share prices. But plenty of massive falls. I watched $27,000 disappear in a day. Money that had taken years to save. Gone. And also the money my family loaned me to try and help. Money they gave me because they believed what I told them. The same bad story that I fell for pursuaded them to try and help me. I wish I had never seen that first message.
Please please please do not do what I've done. Do not risk your future and family with anyone who promises the next get rich system. I'm trying to fix it now. It's going to take more years and I'll need to find another job again. I need to get the $35,000 my family lent me back to them as soon as possible as it was money they needed for medical expenses during the coming year. So please, if there is anything you can spare to help me get this back to my family, anything at all would be gratefully appreciated. If there is anything I can do for you to earn some money please contact me. I'm a hard worker and willing to try anything to fix this.
Thank you for reading my story.