My first bad experience was in Oct 1987, whenI lost my shirt but kept my pants. Every day I learn. Like to give a shout out to Apple for an unpleasant relearning of the importance of margins. Some trading is based on dividend ex-dates and valuations. Also do a fair amount of trading in energy stocks. Always have a sense of the macro investment environment and look for stocks in the sectors with an advantage. I like open minded investors, who will buy a stock based on the valuation. Follow SEC form 4 fillings and keep watch lists based on insider buying - like to see a cluster of insider buying or a lot of insider purchases over a long term. Like lots of cash and no debt on balance sheet. Will buy almost anything if it is cheap enough and there seems to be a catalyst. Look at the financial statements very carefully.