investment is the purchase of an asset or item with the hope that it will generate income or appreciate in the future and be sold at the higher price It generally does not include deposits with a bank or similar institution. The term investment is usually used when referring to a long-term outlook.
This is the opposite of trading or speculation, which are short-term practices involving a much higher degree of risk. Financial assets take many forms and can range from the ultra safe low return government bonds to much higher risk higher reward international stocks. A good investment strategy will diversify the portfolio according to the specified needs.
Investments are often made indirectly through intermediaries, such as pension funds, banks, brokers, and insurance companies. These institutions may pool money received from a large number of individuals into funds such as investment trusts, unit trusts, SICAVs etc. to make large scale investments. Each individual investor then has an indirect or direct claim on the assets purchased, subject to charges levied by the intermediary, which may be large and varied. It generally, does not include deposits with a bank or similar institution. Investment usually involves diversification of assets in order to avoid unnecessary and unproductive risk.