This post could be offensive to many who have been told by investing in the stock market, you are going "to own a piece of the company" and as the company grows, so does your investment. But I am just a layperson and you must have heard of what Madoff did to his clients by pulling off a ponzi Scheme. As long as the money is flowing in, then investors make money, consequently if people stop investing, then there is no profits anymore. So compare this to the stock market in general. As long as people bring in money to buy stocks (the demand), the Yesterday's investors make a profit, and the Todays' investors or traders, will only make money if there will be any Tomorrow's investors. Money comes in as investment and goes out as profit and everybody hopes that this process continues, not realizing that we are all involved a "Ponzi scheme" called the "stock market". It's just a closed system or circle with inputs and outputs equally in value, inside which nothing is generated. One's loss is actually someone else's profit. Money is not being generated and the company's whose shares are being traded on the stock market don't pump money into the market, expect for the small dividend some not all companies pay. And the worse thing is when they go out of business their shareholders would be wiped out completely. And just think about this so-called "recession" or "market crash" or "market melt-down" phenomenon that happens frequently. This is part of the stock market's Ponzi scheme as shares would have gone up to sky had there never been such a "brake" to stop and control them, and bring them back to zero to start the game all over again. Imagine just due to such "recessions", how many people got laid-off, lost their jobs, and were kicked out of their homes as a result and the subsequent miserable life they have to live everyday. So do you think that the stock market is a "decent and legitimate investing tool", and that what we have been told about how it works is "true"? OR do you think it's nothing but a hidden Ponzi Scheme which reveals itself when the market begins to crash and shares start to nose-dive? I trust this thread will be informative if one thinks deep, deeper than the "the wall street's Madoffs."