V.7:6 (194-198): Riding the Beast by Jean Dilling

V.7:6 (194-198): Riding the Beast by Jean Dilling
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Riding the Beast by Jean Dilling

I remember the first time I rode the "Beast," the largest, scariest roller coaster ride at King's Island amusement park. When I got off, I swore that never would I ride again. A few hours later, I was back in line, ticket in hand, ready to challenge the beast one more time. How ironic that I should compare trading commodities to riding the Beast.

July 18, 1988, Monday: A young broker named Randy called to tempt me into buying silver. I would have usually cut a phone salesman off but he was very pleasant, more informative than pushy, and I found myself very interested until I realized he was talking about commodity investments. I could not even consider using my secure CD's, mutual funds and bonds for a speculative venture, so I explained to Randy that my money was tied up and not easily liquidated. Completely understanding, he offered to call back in a few months and I promised to keep him in mind.

To be honest, I was not the least bit interested in commodities and never had been. Even in my finance classes my eyes fogged over when commodities came up. I skipped the next couple of classes so I wouldn't have to endure the boring "farmer" talk.

With my incomplete knowledge I saw commodities at two ends of a very short scale. At one end was farmers auctioning for a good price on their products and at the other were the millionaires and large speculators who bought gold and foreign currency. As a self-employed, Midwest businesswoman, I knew my place in the financial world. Mutual funds and CD's were the only way to go. Safe and secure, albeit slow and unexciting.

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