mac5155 wrote:Can I just toss in $50 and have a little fun at first to learn?
Not really. If you want to get into a mutual fund, most have minimums around 2500. You can find some lower, though.
If you want individual stock...$50 won't buy you much and, if wherever you buy from has a commission of, say, $5 - there went 10% of your funds right there. hard to make a profit starting at a 10% loss.
There are websites out there that let you pick stocks for free to learn about the market. www.fool.com
is one. You thumb up or thumb down a stock and then start getting a score based on how your stock performs against the market (not gain or profit, just versus the index - SP 500 I believe - so you technically could GAIN points if the market falls 2% points and your stock only falls 1%)