Beginner general guidance

Hello :blush:

I hope this is the correct part of the forum to post. If not please could I be re directed

I am looking for general pointers on where to go to learn about investing and other relevant Information suitable for a complete beginner that won’t overwhelm

So far I have followed videos online talking about starting up as well as tried to learn about some websites such as Trust net to see what different stock funds (is that right?) contain

As such right now I have joined 212 and opened a shares isa as this I believe will let me not have to worry about figuring out taxes and reporting them

I have got my free share for signing up which was Starbucks with a value of just over £10

Then I have invested just £200 as a start and have chosen three ETFs to invest in which are :

Vanguard S&P500 (ACC) - VUAG
Vanguard FTSE 100 (ACC) - VUKG
Vanguard FTSE All-World High Dividend Yield UCITS ETF - VHYL

I want to aim to just invest each month for as long as I can and mostly stay in safe and stable choices but am willing to try some riskier things as I learn

So with that in mind I chose the above based on the little (very little!) knowledge I have picked up in my starting learning

So I picked the two ACC as so far these seem the safest and most recommended choices for new investors and that they will hopefully grow what I put in and re invest any potential earnings back in for me.
Also I chose them so I would be invested in the US market and UK market together and spread my investments around to minimise risk

Then I chose the all world ETF to spread my investment over even more areas
I believe this one will be potentially more risky as it tries to give higher dividends which won’t be auto reinvested for me so I can do that myself

Of my monthly investment pot I will be putting larger amounts into the two ACC probably equally and less into the all world ETF (eg out of £200, £75 to each ACC and £50 into the all world)

So I think what I’ve done so far is keep me relatively safe with a big spread of where my money ends up with the two ACC ETFs, and then given myself even more wider area albeit more risky options with the all world ETF

Can anyone offer advice/critique of what I’ve do e so far?

Thank you all for your time and apologies for the large wall of text :blush:


You are off to a good start.

Two choices I would probably suggest are good for a UK investors long term core portfolio are HMWO and VWRP.

The reasons being they have a long track record, invest globally and have a low fee.

Can I ask why VHYL, and why the three funds you have chosen / what weightings?

In terms of dabbling in individual shares - google how many retail investors can regularly beat the average market index returns. I’m not saying don’t buy individual stocks, but perhaps limit yourself to a small amount at first and see how you go if that’s what you would like to try.

All the best!

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Seems a sound enough start. I’d dump VUKG and VHYL then consider adding a developed or all-world tracker to complement / replace VUAG.

You don’t much more beyond that but I like to include some small cap and emerging markets exposure which should do well in the long run.

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Looks like you’re definitely off to a good start :+1:t2:

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Funds are a safe start but I find they often don’t perform that well. Thus they may be a good way to start but you may want to learn and consider about investing in individual companies at some stage. One advantage with T212 is that you could put literally a couple of £ into a company just to test it and learn.

I would watch the videos from T212 and other reputable sources to learn about trading. If you do consider investing in individual companies I would suggest you also learn a bit about share charts.

Investopedia is a good source of information including chart analysis.

The community on T212 is different between the mobile app and the desktop platform. On the desktop community (here) things are pretty good but a bit quiet. The mobile app community has a little bit different and has a lot of posts that (putting it politely) aren’t that helpful and a far number simply telling people to buy or sell a particular stock with not reasoning or analysis to explain that. Generally ignore hype and people telling you to buy/sell stocks. Even the professional firms who specialise in charging people for their recommendations don’t always have great track records so definitely ignore hype on the internet but perhaps use it to do your own research (which may be informing you which shares to avoid - over hyped shares can come down as well as go up…).

Don’t hesitate to ask questions particularly on the desktop platform community


Thanks for the replies and advice everyone!

I will certainly look Into all suggestions given
Next step is to check out the learning resources mentioned here to :slightly_smiling_face:

Two quick questions that I’ve come across since posting are :

1 : I have come across some stocks with unfamiliar pricing, I thought it was a currency I didn’t recognise but I realised the stock was for a British company and instead of a ‘£’ it simply had ‘p’ I have not figured this out yet?

2 : I’ve found some things I cannot buy, I get the message saying this cannot be bought in a shares isa and is only trades me in CFD?

  1. “p” = pence (GBP/100)
  2. Are the shares that you are referring to available in the Invest account. There are some restrictions on what shares can be held in an ISA so the probably answer to your question is that the shares don’t qualify for an ISA (HRMC rules nothing to do with T212)

Oh wow, now I feel daft! Pence of course!
Apologies for the daft question there, I was thinking it maybe Percentage based or something.
I didn’t think it would be so simple an answer

Yes the shares were allowed in the invest account when I looked, so some options will not qualify due to government rules.
That’s good to know, the ones I’ve come across so far have all come from big flashy YouTube videos with catchy get rich fast titles

I am taking all YouTube information with a huge load of salt at the moment, and I know that it would be unwise to follow most information from there besides basic things

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I’ve posted this here before but one good thing to learn: stock prices are effectively random. If you haven’t already take some time to read this free book.

A lot of people advocate world tracker index etf, isn’t that duplicating your work pension kinds.

I don’t quite see the fun in it tho

I think that’s a great place to start.
Even if you move in a different direction with your future additions, it’s nice to get into the habit of investing every month.

Sounds like you’re aiming long-haul - and especially with ETFs I recommend just kind of leaving them be, no need to be checking the charts every few hours etc; if you don’t intend to take it out for x amount of years anyway, don’t get too down about a few % either way when it comes kind of thing, just keep your routine up.

Gets a bit different if you start dabbling in smaller stocks of course!
If you ever go down that direction, I’d encourage you to maybe keep a note file or something similar with your reasonings. e.g. - why you are tempted to invest, what you expect the company to be looking like in 1/2/x years.

Of course, we can all get ‘lucky’, especially if it’s bull market season, but personally I find it intriguing looking back both good and bad and seeing how the eventuality matches up with my original thoughts.


Blimmin eck Sir, no I would not invest in those three.

Their annual returns, last 12 months, are all 5%.

Their returns over the last 3 months are 8%, -3% and -1%. Average 1.33%
VUKG for example is negative for the last 1day, 1 week, 1 month and 3 months! Your money would have been better off under the mattress.

As you’ve come to a DIY website I assume you might be interested to do better than that. Yes you have to learn a little and check what’s sensible and change tack every, say couple of months, but it isn’t the science of the moonly rockets.

What else could you have got over the last 3 months?:

qqq5 - the Nasdaq top 100, tech companies. You would hardly have been able to miss that they’ve been doing well for several months.
Three months, 96%.

3VT - whole world index, last 3 months, 15%.

Or you could go for a “pretty safe bet”. E.g. knowing that interest rates were likely to be rising. That means fixed interest gov Bonds fall, so
5STL 40%, in just the last month.

Of course if you were a bit more engaged, you’d have heard about individual companies. The poster buy , 3xNvidia, 3months, 200%.

That of course is hindsight, but if you’d have got anywhere in the right sort of direction you’d beat the heck out of 1.3% in 3 months or 5% in a year.

These are “leveraged” funds, which mean you get a multiple of the change.

One above is a “short” fund, which goes up when the base thing/basket goes down,
So if the market starts to turn you’d sell your +n’s and buy the short version, -n’s.
There isn’t a **-**5QQQ but there is a -3, Short, US 500 .

Take shelter in a gov bond or something boring when things are turbulent, until you see what’s likely to happen.
Perhaps the Saudis will (as now) say they’re going to restrict oil supply (because they haven’t got anough cash for their expensive projects), so oil would be worth a look. There are leveraged funds for that, too.

You could just put 20% into something more optimistic than 1.33%.

Yes they are all available under the ISA.

Read a few “Investors Chronicles” - you don’t have to work things out for yourself.

Did you just recommend a 5x leveraged fund to a beginner? :man_facepalming:


Sorry @Punting that’s terrible advice recommending leveraged products including shorts to some just starting out learning about investing.


Quick way to learn what works and what doesn’t

First, I didn’t recommend anything.

As to his ability to comprehend, given he has enough nous to come to a forum like this, I credit him with the sense to find out what he’s doing with his money, and suggested a few things which are possible.

Many people can subtract one number from another and multiply it by a positive or negative number.
Basic maths.

Show me where I said “recommend”.
Basic English!

I agree if both those are too difficult for someone then they would have problems. Use a Building Society.

What’s very terrible is that NOBODY pointed out that if he used the funds he specified, he’d be likely to lose money, going by their past 3 months’ performance in a favourable market environment.
Two of them are negative, for heavens’ sake.