If you want a dead-simple plan for investing successfully in the stock market and building your wealth with minimum risk, follow these steps.

ETFs: The painless way to invest in the stock market

1)      Find 7 good sector Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs) and 2 or 3 good foreign ETFs or index funds (If you’re not sure what an ETF is, Google it).

2)      Diversify by putting an equal amount of money into each of the ETFs.

3)      Spend a few hours a month monitoring your investments and rebalancing when necessary.

That’s it! You’ll have an investment plan that outperforms the vast majority of actively managed mutual funds, minimizes your risk in the markets and leaves you with plenty of time to pursue activities you enjoy.

Of course you can likely do even better if you spend additional time learning about individual stocks and investing only in the exceptional ones, but keep in mind that increased returns don’t happen for free. Your risk will probably be greater (although you’ll most likely achieve better risk adjusted returns) and you’ll spend a bit more time managing your investments. However some people gladly accept the tradeoffs.

So if you want to invest with as little effort as possible but still want good returns and minimized risk, learn about ETFs and implement this 3-step strategy.

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