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Biggest Investor Mistakes: iPonzi, Anyone?

By Ben Steverman - 2011-09-13T22:48:05Z

Ryan McVay/Stone/Getty Images

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Day-trading Dreams

Sheryl Garrett's client hated his high-pressure health-care job and thought he'd found a solution: Quit and earn $7,000 per day trading stocks from home. He'd already paid $3,500 for software. Knowing it was a bad idea, Garrett, founder of the Garrett Planning Network, agreed to attend a sales presentation by the software vendor. In a two-hour conversation afterward, she warned her client of transaction costs and the difficulties of market timing. Most convincing were her questions about the software vendors. "If it were that easy, they wouldn't be selling it for $3,500," she said. "They'd keep it for themselves." The client decided to hold on to his job for a while and trade a small part of his portfolio.