How diverse should I be with $5,000?

I'm 19 years old. I've maxed my Roth IRA for this year and am currently a sophomore in college. I have also been making monthly payments on my tuition for the past 3 semesters. I have almost half of my freshman year paid off.

My parent's told me that if I invested $5,000 of my own money, they would match the $5,000 and pay off the rest of my freshman year.

Because of this, I feel comfortable putting money away and would prefer to do so for a longer period of time (15-20 years).

My question is, how diverse should I be with my money? I was considering something like the Russel 3000 or S&P 500, but is this too broad or too diverse for a 15-20 year period? Should I even consider global markets?

I'm looking for something that's stable. I don't expect to be a millionaire or anything close to it from this initial investment, however, I would like to see some sort of growth over 15-20 years.

Investing, IRAs, Lifestage Based Planning
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May 2017
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Congratulations on taking the first steps to becoming a successful investor. The fact that you are young gives you a great deal of options for your future. Generally, the word stable and the S&P 500 Index don't necessarily go together. The market has volatility and will go up and down. That being said, for someone your age and with your long time horizon, you should do well by investing in the S&P 500 Index. There are a lot of low-cost ETFs out there that should fit your needs. You can also own a few different market ETFs like the Nasdaq, the Dow Jones Industrial Average, Russell 1000, etc. Start with Vanguard and do a little research on what kind of investor you are and the type of volatility you can handle. I recently wrote a couple of articles that you may find interesting...

May 2017
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