What is the best way to start investing as an 18-year-old?
I am 18 years old. I have money but I want to double the amount that I have. Where and how should I start?
Open up a mutual fund account and setup a monthly bank draft of a regular amount to be taken from your bank account and into the mutual fund. Do this every month and increase the amount ever year by some amount (it doesn't have to be a big increase, just an increase) and you will be rich beyond your expectations years from now.
There is no real way to double your money in the short-term, chasing that goal will leave you broke in the long-term. Pick a mutual fund that invests in stocks that pay dividends. Good luck. I would suggest that once you finish your education and get your first job that you hire a Registered Investment Adviser who is a CFP. Check with the XY Planning Network, they are professionals who work specifically with younger generation clients.
Love that you are starting early. The best advice I recieved around your age was to set up an automatic investment of some kind even if just for $25 per month. Buy a lower cost index fund buy some each month with you automatic contribution, and let compounding interest do it's thing.
Best of luck.
The fact that you are starting to think about investing at such a young age is great. The best thing to do is to put together a plan that allows you to consistantly contribute to your investment account on a weekly or monthly basis, whatever works for you. Also, make sure the money you are putting away doesn't put unnecessary stress on your standard of living. Once you have a number you're comfortable with, you need to allocate your investments according to your risk tolerance. You have a long time horizon if you're saving for retirement. If you plan on using the money before retirement, you should consider the volatility of the market. For example, if you plan on using the money in 5 years, you should allocate your investments in a much more conservative way. You may also want to consider using target date funds. These funds target a specific date and make allocation changes as you approach the date in which you will need the money.
You should probably speak to a financial advisor to help get you started. Every person has different needs and expectations, so a financial advisor can guide and explain your options.