I was reading The Metro yesterday morning on my way down to London and came across the article which Holly had participated in. It really inspired me and made me think that investing in shares is something which I would like to do. Unfortunately I do not come from a finance background and so am completely thrown about where to start. I would be grateful for any advice you could pass my way. Realistically, I would only have about 2k to invest, so any tips would be gratefully received.
Well, I'm very glad that you felt inspired by the Metro article, Sarah-Jane!
If you have £2k to start with, I would set up a Stocks and Shares ISA which quarantines your gains from the tax man.
This is a long-term play, so you have to promise me that you will not sell up if things go down by say £300 one year, which could happen - but obviously the belief is that over 5 years you will end up doing much better than you would in cash. But selling if things have a wobble is a no-no!
You do not know where to start, and sound like you would like to learn - so I suggest you have a look at Wealthify or Nutmeg.
Both are relatively easy to use and offer help to guide you into the best 'ready-made' mix of investments for you. And don't be afraid to take some risk – you are quite young and if this is for the long-term, then some ups and downs along the way don't matter.
If this is not for the long-term (i.e. less than 5 years) then you should either be choosing a lower-risk portfolio, or sticking with a high interest rate cash account (if you can find one! I like Savings Champion's Best Buy tables for comparing these accounts).
You may find it helpful to read the tips and info in our 'Making your first investment' learning path, before you decide to take the plunge.