Many companies featured on Money advertise with us. Opinions are our own, but compensation and
in-depth research may determine where and how companies appear. Learn more about how we make money.

Money is not a client of any investment adviser featured on this page. The information provided on this page is for educational purposes only and is not intended as investment advice. Money does not offer advisory services.

Harold Pollack, co-author of The Index Card: Why Personal Finance Doesn't Have to Be Complicated, says nonprofessional investors are notoriously bad at choosing individual stocks. They tend to chase after what's shiny and new, so to speak, in the stock market. They spend a lot of time and energy researching where they should invest their money, but they are unlikely to pick the next Apple.

Pollack thinks you're better off choosing a cheap index funds that cover a broad base of stocks. You're likely to fare better financially, and you'll have more time freed up for the rest of your life.