This is very honest of you to go ahead and announce your personal portfolio, I admire that. But I personally will not disclose my balances, although i have no problem speaking percentages. I will say that I started off with $1,000. Now I am well above 1000% gains.
My investment strategies at this point involve much risk. I am 22 years old, and am in the accumulation stages of wealth. All young people must be prepared to take on high risk ventures to earn as much capital as possible. In my case, I made some solid choices on certain stock options that have grown massively. Now that I have a decent amount of money, I will now look to a trustworthy, proven mutual fund or ETF to have as a long term, sure thing for my retirement.
Dont be discouraged Armin, just load up your account with more money. This is probably one of the best times to jump in the market, according to a relative of mine who works at the Board of Trade in Chicago. All these great stocks, who were once goliaths, are now being sold at massive discounts and are near 52 week lows.
Soon, this recession/financials crisis will be over and once the dust settles, all the financial ETFs and stocks will be so cheap, they wont have anywhere to go but up. Think about it; JP Morgan is a goliath company that is trading around $40. Citigroup is the biggest bank in America, and is trading at $20. Merrill Lynch, Goldman Sachs, etc. These are unbelievable stocks which are priced real low now and give excellent returns over time, as well as dividends. I dont believe that the bottom is here just yet, but financials will be hot again.
You just have to know how to ride this volatile market. I have been somewhat fortunate to make good trades, but at the same time I spend my day glued to the stock streamer and monitoring headlines so that I can have control of my trades. I also have set limit orders just in case my investments head south. At night times, I look at the futures and try to gauge how the market will move the next day. The more involved you are, the better decisions you can make. If you cant handle this, then just gather up a lot of money, and dump it in a nice mutual fund and let the experts invest it for you