47 votes

Smartest thing to do with 5-10k dollars?

I seek the wisdom of the great multitude of intelligent people that pass through this sacred place.

I'm a 20 year-old college student who has saved up 10k dollars over the past 5 years of working as a lifeguard. What is the smartest way to invest 5-10k to make some more money in the short term? I'm loathe to let it languish in a savings account and I would like to have some cushion money when I leave college to pay for loans and what not.

I appreciate any and all advice!

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.

Start your own business

Start your own business. You will generate more income than an investment. Find something you love and figure out a way to get paid for it.

Buy the Future of Mobile: Microvision MVIS

Microvision makes miniature scanned laser optical engines which enable tiny, always in focus pico-projectors for cellphones, gaming, automotive HUDs (head up displays - See Pioneer CyberNav), see through eyewear (see Google Project Glass) including 3D Augmented Reality (AR) with gesture recognition (See MSFT Fortaleza, Apple 3D patents, Microvision patents).

After 16 years and $500+ million spent as a public company, they have this year overcome their last supply bottleneck, the commercial availability of key component direct green laser diodes (not frequency doubled IR lasers), opening up several multi-billion dollar markets for exploitation.

Microvision is presently valued at $40M, which is over 10,000 times smaller than Apple, and therefore presents much opportunity for growth.

Good luck.

Pls Assure Us

This is not a pump and dump.

Not a pump and dump

I discovered Dr. Paul in 2002. I found Microvision in 1999. I've suffered along dutifully with each since, first investing in MVIS 1999, when the price per share was much higher. I've lost boatloads along the way, am down about $0.5M (or 95%), but I still vouch for the technology as the best thing out there I can see coming. I have been similarly dogged about Dr. Paul in spite of all the naysayers and expect to be proven right about both in the end.

MVIS' price is at all time lows (look at the full chart).


Yet mass production/commercialization of product is finally starting after years of delay. Pioneer's Cyber Navi AR HUD is the first major example hitting the market in 2012 (right now in Japan).


I offers no guarantees but am sincere in what I write. For an example of a revolutionary FPS (first person shooter) gaming prototype MVIS developed with Intel, Google "Project Tuatara".


They have done equally interesting work with MSFT and many others (Google "Omnitouch" or "Skinput" for examples of mobile touch interaction projection prototypes). See also their original pico-projector demonstrators, ShowWX, ShowWX+ and ShowWX+ HDMI, which were not mass produced due to the cost and limited availability of synthetic (frequency doubled) green lasers. I own a ShowWX and it is an amazing piece of hi-tech.

Internet Marketing

Have someone make a few AFFILIATE websites for you to promote clickbank products that is the easiest way, for a nice income while you sleep.


Casino.... all on red (50/50)

Casino.... all on red (50/50) Good luck!

Joke but you have a better chance with that than the stock market... Unless you know someone who knows someone the markets are not for most if us.

Don't forget to keep a few months living expense handy should you loose your job..

Keep in mind most investments are a form of gambling... Your original investment can be lost.

If you use some of it to stock up on things you use everyday (buying them in bulk on sale) is a pretty safe investment. What are the chances what you buy today will cost more a year from now? Even food is a good thing to hedge on (as long as it is something you normally eat that has a very long shelf life). For example canned mushrooms last year could be bought for 25 cents per small can... Today 59 cents. A 5 can investment ($1.25 last year would have a value today of $2.95). Not to mention how often sales tax gets raised on the non food items. This sure beats the markets. You won't make millions but, if you are buying what you use anyway you can't lose.

One last thought... we are always just buying time... So whatever buys you the most time spent the way you want to spend it...

Looks like you just got more confused kfheuser.

The answer is no one knows the answer. For you the answer is in what has the most value to you. Food? Warmth? Roof over your head? Water? Everything else is speculative.

Cash is King

You should have some precious metals just in case the shit hits the fan; however, in general, the prevailing economic force is deflation. If countries eventually pull out of the euro, there will be a huge wave of deflation before the central banks crank it up hardcore.

I can say what I'm doing... I'm uncomfortably sitting on cash until the euro falls apart. At that time, silver should be dirt cheap again. Then I will add to my stash; 50% of which I sold at the high in the 40's. I kept enough for a good hedge but lowered my purchase price per oz significantly. There are no good investments right now... sit tight.

So paper money is going to go up in value?

It hasn't for a 100 years on average. Hmmm

Free includes debt-free!

very clever

Very clever, indeed, Clint!

Just use caution. Mike Maloney made a pretty compelling argument last week that the huge wave of deflation is already here and underway.


When shtf you will be willing

When shtf you will be willing to give me all your gold for a gallon of water and a few cans of beans... You can't eat gold... It is seriously over rated by most. Sure if you own your home. I mean hold the clear deed. If you have a plan to supply food and water then yes metal has a place in a well balanced plan. Start with the very basics water, food, security, shelter, and work your way up. In a crash I have a feeling medicine, food, guns, ammo and water will be king. Things people can't live without and gold just isn't one of them. Again if you have all the above covered and still have money to burn then gold is way better than dollars.

ahh Bullshit...you people and

ahh Bullshit...you people and you can't eat gold crap gets real old..

So when the collapse comes...

So when the collapse comes... your local super market has a huge stash of gold to buy stock with? Then you will just take your gold down and buy from them? They will replace the currency with some other crap for the surfs. It will be surviving until then... Then they will print up a bunch of the new crap and buy your gold.. Same game same story until some one like Ron Paul puts a end to it...

With millions of starving

With millions of starving people who would want gold? Not to mention the Fed owns that market.. you do realize they print money... They can buy gold for free... just turn on the printing press... They can dump that market any time they want... I have a handful of very well off friends. They are not buying gold... They are buying farm land and land.... Buy when it is down not up... If you have not noticed gold is up...

I can buy all your water and all your beans with just a few

ounces of lead.

The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. But no price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself.
Friedrich Nietzsche

LOL you must be a lousy

LOL you must be a lousy shot... I can buy it for much less..

I was assuming I would have to "pay" more than just one person.


The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. But no price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself.
Friedrich Nietzsche

to funny... Hope this isn't

to funny... Hope this isn't your real plan...

The point I was trying to make was that if things get

as bad as you imply, as I think they will, and you are the only one in your general vicinity with anything to eat and drink, it will be obvious. You will need a small army to help you protect it. (Better have enough for everyone). And in a case such as this, you would be better off with something more portable / storeable than food and water. Yes, a starving person will pay whatever is necessary to acquire food and water, it is our most basic need, of course. You will also find that starving people are willing to kill to satisfy those needs also. You and I would probably do the same, if not for ourselves, then definately for loved ones. BTW, no, I do not plan on taking from others by force, but I do realize that I cannot protect what I do have by myself. If it gets so bad that people are willing to trade even an oz. of gold for a glass of water and a can of beans, I can guarantee you there will be enough dead bodies around for cannibalism to become a not so unusual occurence.

The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. But no price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself.
Friedrich Nietzsche

Small farm belt town here.

Small farm belt town here. Everyone hunts and grows gardens. We will quickly adjust and provide security. I tend to think barter will rule the day. Soon followed by the printing presses and a new dollar. We did not get to this point by accident. They will bleed the wealth right out of us. Do you think they are going to let a metal stand in the way? I think when it gets bad they will offer the solution to the problem they created. Everyone will flock to them. I don't think that solution includes the Constitution or everyone trading their gold and silver.

I mean absolutely no offense to you or anyone else by this, but.

I do not recall any, and I do mean ANY, farmers sticking together during the late 70's and early 80's when the banks were taking away and dimanteling most of the family farms during that time. From what I remember, the solvent ones were tripping over themselves trying to pick up cheap land and equipment. What makes you think they will band together to protect each other now?

The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. But no price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself.
Friedrich Nietzsche

Taxes have long ago

Taxes have long ago dismantled the family farm. A child can no longer afford a free farm.

The farmers that think they have to own the newest and biggest equipment get themselves into trouble. Why should a solvent farmer bailout someone who can't run a farm?

A Farmer goes down and others jump in to harvest, everyone knows everyone... around here when someone sees you swinging a hammer they grab one and jump in.

It will be very easy for us to set up 24hr watches to cover the town. Safety in numbers. If someone screams expect a heard coming to the rescue.

Nope... when the store

Nope... when the store shelves are empty no need for currency. Again it will be barter for useful items... Gold has it's place but, you better have all your ducks in a row... Why would I trade my food and water for gold when I have no place to spend the gold... After things straighten out metal will have a place but, you have to survive to that point... for example if someones child was sick on a death bed they would trade all their gold for a little Penicillin... In fact I would guess having a supply of antibiotics would be better than gold in a collapse. You can buy large qty at the animal feed store for cheap and what will it be worth in a collapse? Gold is a luxury now and it will be in a collapse... It is a great way to preserve wealth but, holding a 100 ounces of gold thirsting to death in the desert doesn't work either. Don't get me wrong not against gold but those who think it is all they need are in for a real shocker... Read up on past currency collapses it will give you and idea. At minimum you better have a way of keeping someone from taking your gold!

Your idea that someone would trade ALL of their gold or silver

for just a little bit of this or that perceived necessity relies on the premise that such a person is an idiot.

Would you trade $10k today for a gallon of water? How about after the collapse? Would you trade your rifle or handgun for it? How about your house for a gallon of water?


Gold IS money and it IS based on barter. Trading with it is no different than trading with any other commodity. You will trade it in proportion to what you are getting for it, or else you wont make the trade.

But if you put yourself in a position that ALL you have is gold and no way to provide for yourself or survive, with no resources, tools or skills, then you deserve to be taken for a ride in such a scenario.

Would you counsel people today to give up all of their cash and savings because they can't "eat" them?


Would I counsel people today

Would I counsel people today to buy gold? Only if they had all the necessities taken care of first. Gold is a way to preserve wealth (you have to have wealth to preserve). I would counsel a person today to give up cash to own a home and carry no debt. Toss out more to dig a well. and many other things.... These things will only cost more in the future and you will need them for life... Once all these things arre taken care of then you have room for the luxury of gold.

Yes if I was starving I would trade 10k for food. When life's staples become scarce values change. When it comes right down to it gold is simply a metal and not a necessity of life. The most valuable commodities will be those that can't be survived without.

Gold is just not nearly as important nor the answer so many think it is. If you go into this collapse with nothing but silver and gold I suspect you will come out of it with none.

You make many good points. I

You make many good points. I agree with each one except one, gold and silver used as money. I think they will be global currency backing or curreny themselves but not any time soon.

I too see that TPTB will offer the solution to the worldwide problem they created. I beleive that offering is running concurrently with maaaany things. I think TPTB will continue to manipulate those metals so that they're available for the common man globally, but that this availability is and will continue to be gradual.

I appreciate your comment here and the ones you made above it. They're pragmatic, sensical and sound. One thing that confuses me about many DPers who advocate gold is that they don't grasp the position you take even though they field it many times and in many ways that dilineate it. No longer do I have patience with those gold advocates because I feel they comprehend these points and arguments. I have concluded their persistence belies their projected intention.

So, because of their persistence on defying the obvious after much explanation, that much more on this issue is why I respect your comments. Those advocates induce exhaustion. If you can keep up your commentary on this issue, just know one DPer is smiling at you. If ever you encounter DPer Republicae, a gold and silver bug if ever there has been one in the history of mankind, head the opposeite direction.

His comments are not long. They test time and space. They are jammed with history. This jamming, if thought about, supports our view. As if to zoom out from the picture he paints, I'm astounded that he misses that picture, the obvious, that gold as a medium of exchange all along has been one massive, eons-long creation for manipulation.

If you want to glimpse his conversation on gold and silver, use DP's search function to type in my name and this title Gold Backing, US Notes and Competing Currencies. That title is at the start of a moderately lengthed debate between me and him. I enjoy debate, but I dislike leading language and intimidation language (that is, "surely you know," "I can assure you," etc.). I've deduced most of those language users know they use it. When I feel that way about someone, I know it's time for the conversation to end.

Anyway, thanks for your comments in this post. I hope you keep 'em coming on the DP.

School's fine. Just don't let it get in the way of thinking. -Me

Study nature, not books. -Walton Forest Dutton, MD, in his 1916 book whose subject is origin (therefore what all healing methods involve and count on), simple and powerful.

I am no expert on gold. I am

I am no expert on gold. I am smart enough to pay close attention to friends who are very successful. They always seem to be well ahead of the curve. Buying AIG when it was toxic only to buy more when if dropped even lower and everyone was getting out to make a fortune when it was bailed out. One thing I have noticed is they always buy when the news is telling everyone to get out... When I have conversed about gold with them I am told they don't feel it is a good investment way to low of a return. I think a big problem with gold is it pays no dividend. You tie up your money and never have any new money until it is sold. When you buy a farm it pays yearly. When you are old enough that the dividends you expect to collect are less than the value of the farm it is time to think about cashing out typically for a profit. The whole process is generating income and wealth. As the population increases the demand for the farm increases. If you bought gold in the 70's at 30 dollars an ounce and have held it until today yes a profit has been made. If you bought a farm in the 70's collected profits every year for 40 years and lived off of say half the profits and reinvested the rest who do you think won? Not to mention if you held your gold what did you eat for the last 40 years? To eat you would have had to sell off much of that gold every year for 40 years. They also all tell me you can't eat gold.

They can also afford to invest in risky high profit options like AIG knowing the bank will be refilled with the dividends the farm will generate. The farm is just one example of the logic they apply to investing and wealth building.

I think we mostly agree, but what maybe you aren't seeing is

WHY gold and silver ever became "money" in the first place.

They are merely barter. The BEST barter.

Their history is an excellent lesson in what happens in a barter economy.

Money will always eventually result from barter, and gold and silver are natural commodities best suited for the role. They aren't just "some metal."

They are special metals. They have special chemical and elemental properties. THAT is why they always end up being used as money. Not just because people think they are shiny and pretty.

In a barter situation, not all trades can clear with only two parties. In fact, MOST trades cannot clear. There is not a common interest.

So more complicated trades involving more parties have to be constructed.

Eventually, the market will settle on a common commodity with which to use for barter for all trades. This commodity will meet several conditions to arrive at this status. (which at that point, is no longer considered "barter" but instead is considered a proper "money")

#1 - it must be widely USEFUL. The more industry a commodity is used in, the more utility a commodity has, and the more uses it can be put to, the more desirable it will be among a larger percentage of the trading market.

#2 - it must be durable. It can't be easily dissolved, oxidized, reacted with normal exposure, burnable, etc. (this is why salt makes a poor money, as does paper, thus we can't use things that are radioactive, or that decay readily in the natural environment without special protection)

#3 - it must be homogenous. When it is divided, the material must not be fundamentally different than when it was whole. If you have a piece of it, it has to have the same properties as when it was larger. (this restricts us to the natural elements)

#4 - it must be divisible. you have to be able to cut it into smaller pieces. This facilitates "making change" and allows for greater amounts of trades to occur. If all trades had to clear based on only very large values, not many trades would happen, the money would not reach commoner's hands, and thus most people would be poor and completely unable to obtain what they could not produce themselves.

#5 - it must be ductile. You have to be able to shape it into something. This excludes gases and liquids. Sure, you COULD try to barter with oil, but if the barrel busted, your SOL. Thus, we are now limited to solid elements that can be shaped into something, remain that way, and can be further divided for more convenient transactions if need be.

#6 - it must be fungible. The parts must add up to the whole. This excludes things of value based on size alone, for example, diamonds. Two 1/2 carat diamonds are not worth the same as a single one-carat diamond.

#7 - it must be relative rare. If it is easy to obtain and common, then little trading would ensue. As well, if it were used for money, then massive price fluctuations would occur as new "money" was brought to market via creating of it.

This limits us to only a handful of stable metals on the periodic chart.

Some are more durable than others. Some more useful than others. Some more rare than others. Some more ductile than others.

To whatever degree they meet those conditions, they have been used as money.

Copper for example is very useful and ductile, but it tarnishes and corrodes. So it isn't as durable as some other options. But for small purchases over short terms, it is very good for money.

Nickel is similar in this regard, though more durable and less reactive to exposure.

However, neither is very rare. So they will forever be limited to small trades.

Silver is much better in this regard. It does tarnish but is not as reactive as copper, and it is much more rare. This lends to a perfect medium of exchange for every day purchases and medium term (within a couple of years) savings. If stored properly, it can even serve as a relatively long term store of value or savings.

Platinum and Palladium are both very rare, but so far are not uber useful and are only more recently coming into their own in technological applications. Thus they are not in high demand or very necessary for our industry like the other metals. But they can serve a purpose monetarily as they meet all the other conditions. However, while they are ductile and mostly non-reactive, they are VERY hard and more difficult to work with than the others. Thus this limits their coining ability or desirability.

Finally there is gold.

It meets all of the conditions, and uniquely among the other choices, is non-reactive. It does not tarnish or corrode.

It is relatively scarce, and VERY ductile. (so much so, it is usually alloyed in coin for added durability)

As a result of this, and its extensive usefulness in common industry over a 5000 year period with new uses being invented daily, it is THE best choice for money - a common medium of exchange - a common barter.

Your statements above show you had little or no understanding of this, of WHY gold is and has been used for money for so long, and thus, why it will continue to be, and why it is MUCH more important than you are giving it credit for.

Buy physical gold. When our

Buy physical gold. When our money collapses you will be far ahead of the rest of us who couldn't afford to do that.

Blessings )o(

Wouldn't silver be better

Wouldn't silver be better since it is more undervalued?