This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
See Cramer's multi-million dollar portfolio for FREE and get his new book Get Rich Carefully! Learn More

My 8-Year-Old's Portfolio Will Kick Your Portfolio's ...

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- When I graduated high school, I was one month away from turning 18 years old. At that point, I already had my future mapped out for more than a decade. I was going to be the next Howard Stern.

Less than two years out of high school (1995), I moved to Miami and took my first full-time radio gig doing nights on a sports talk station. The next several years of my life looked a lot like the movie Private Parts, minus the lesbians and ultimate smashing success in the radio capital of the world, New York City.

I even dealt with program directors like "Pig Virus." (He's a real person, by the way).

At day's end, I had a moderately successful career, but after about a dozen years on the radio I decided it was not for me. Or maybe radio decided "I wasn't for it."

In any event, before I left home my radio jobs paid by the hour. I think the most I made was $15 per. My summer job at the local housing authority delivered a better wage. In Miami, where they pay you with sunshine, I made a wimpy $26,500 a year. Welcome to the big leagues, kid!

Through it all, I invested in DRIPs (Dividend Reinvestment Plans) and a smattering of mutual funds. As I made more money, I started buying stocks. As I made more money, I bought more stocks.

I became obsessed with the stock market at a relatively young age. I enjoyed more than moderate success investing. I only got my rear end handed to me once -- actually several times. Each time came during the 1999-2000 dot-com boom.

Other than do not chase IPOs, the biggest lessons I learned were:

  • Do not sell right when the power of compounding is about to go to work for you; and
  • Do not sell prematurely because you're getting impatient with a stock.
  • I unloaded 100 shares of McDonald's (MCD) from a DRIP in 1997 to buy a couch or something stupid. In 2000, I took profits on 500 shares of Petsmart (PETM) at four-something a share. Don't look up the price. It even hurts me when you do it.

    Fast forward to 2012 and I am an 36-year old man with a kid about to morph into a 9-year-old. Insane.

    Stock quotes in this article: KFT, VIA.B, MSG 

    Select the service that is right for you!

    COMPARE ALL SERVICES
    Action Alerts PLUS
    Try it NOW

    Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link actively manage a real portfolio and reveal their money management tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

    Product Features:
    • $2.5+ million portfolio
    • Large-cap and dividend focus
    • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
    • Weekly roundups
    TheStreet Quant Ratings
    Try it NOW
    Only $49.95/yr

    Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

    Product Features:
    • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
    • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
    • A custom stock screener
    • Upgrade/downgrade alerts
    Stocks Under $10
    Try it NOW

    David Peltier, uncovers low dollar stocks with extraordinary upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

    Product Features:
    • Model portfolio
    • Stocks trading below $10
    • Intraday trade alerts
    • Weekly roundups
    Dividend Stock Advisor
    Try it NOW

    Jim Cramer's protege, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

    Product Features:
    • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
    • Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
    • Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
    Real Money Pro
    Try it NOW

    All of Real Money, plus 15 more of Wall Street's sharpest minds delivering actionable trading ideas, a comprehensive look at the market, and fundamental and technical analysis.

    Product Features:
    • Real Money + Doug Kass Plus 15 more Wall Street Pros
    • Intraday commentary & news
    • Ultra-actionable trading ideas
    Options Profits
    Try it NOW

    Our options trading pros provide daily market commentary and over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

    Product Features:
    • 100+ monthly options trading ideas
    • Actionable options commentary & news
    • Real-time trading community
    • Options TV
    To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
    DOW 16,514.37 +65.12 0.40%
    S&P 500 1,879.55 +7.66 0.41%
    NASDAQ 4,161.4580 +39.9120 0.97%

    Brokerage Partners

    Rates from Bankrate.com

    • Mortgage
    • Credit Cards
    • Auto
    Advertising Partners

    Free Newsletters from TheStreet

    My Subscriptions:

    After the Bell

    Before the Bell

    Booyah! Newsletter

    Midday Bell

    TheStreet Top 10 Stories

    Winners & Losers

    Register for Newsletters
    Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs