bank statements

Date               Description                                      Amount         Available Balance

Processing     BARNESNOBLE                                 -40.57             $1,654.13

Processing     NETFLIX.COM                                    -8.65               $1,694.70

Processing     VICTORIA’S SECRET                         -51.09             $1,703.35

Complete        TARGET                                             1,098.22         $1,754.44

Does this look relatively familiar? Although not exactly to scale, this is fairly close to what your bank statements probably look like. From this statement example, I can tell quite a few things:

  • You like to read.
  • You like to watch movies and television shows.
  • You like clothing and products from a well-known retail company.
  • You either work at an established discount retail department store or received a refund from a fairly large purchase.
What Your Bank Statements Say About You

Our bank statements can tell us a lot about ourselves, even if it’s just four line items. Now imagine we add on 40 more line items every month and we practically have our life story and anyone can assign character traits, likes, and dislikes about us. But if this is so, then is it possible for us to find investments from this same statement? The answer is undoubtedly YES!

As consumers, we relate all of the example transactions above to items we buy or even an employer that pays our salary. But many companies that we frequently shop at or work for are actually publicly traded companies in the stock market and we can obtain ownership in them by buying shares of stock.

Company and Store Examples

Barnes & Noble not only sells books, calendar, planners, etc.; but they also are listed on the New York Stock Exchange. Reading is fundamental and I wouldn’t be surprised if many investors who own shares of Barnes & Noble stock believe in this concept as well.

Netflix contains some of our favorite shows like House of Cards, Orange is the New Black, and Daredevil. In addition, Netflix is listed on the NASDAQ exchange and a major player within the technology industry in the stock market.

Victoria Secret has always been a favorite brand amongst women, and my wife is definitely one of them. Although Victoria secret isn’t a stock all by itself, it is a subsidiary of American fashion retailer L Brands, which also owns Bath & Body Works. You can find L Brands listed on the New York Stock Exchange.

Lastly, Target is another major corporation listed on the New York Stock Exchange. One of the leading discount stores, along with Wal-Mart, is available in the open stock market for any consumer to also become an investor. If you are an employee, Target may offer programs like profit sharing and stock options. Profit sharing is similarly to receiving a dividend as you, the employee, may receive a portion of the company’s net income. Stock options allow employees to buy rights to shares of Target stock without actually owning shares. If you so choose, you can exercise your option to buy those shares at a later date and have the money simply deducted from your paycheck to cover the costs.

As you can see, your bank statements can be a great indicator of the type of person you are. In addition, it can also help you in investment research to find companies that would interest you to invest in.

If you are wanting to start investing or a new investor, but struggle to find actual companies to invest in, then you may want to look right at your bank statement. This not only makes your search easier, but narrows down all the opportunities out there so you don’t get lost in the chaos. Oh yea, your bank (e.g. Bank of American, Chase, Wells Fargo, etc.) is probably a stock as well. Want to test it out? Begin your search here: http://finance.yahoo.com.

Eric Patrick

Dr. Eric PatrickContent Contributor