An investor is someone who allocates capital with the expectation of a financial return. The types of investments include, — gambling and speculation, equity, debt securities, real estate, currency, commodity, derivatives such as put and call options, etc. This definition makes no distinction between those in the primary and secondary markets. That is, someone who provides a business with capital and someone who buys a stock are both investors. Since those in the secondary market are considered investors, speculators are also investors. According to this definition there is no difference
The following classes of investors are not mutually exclusive:
Also, investors might be classified according to their styles. In this respect, an important distinctive investor psychology trait is risk attitude.
The term “investor protection” defines the entity of efforts and activities to observe, safeguard and enforce the rights and claims of a person in his role as an investor. This includes advice and legal action. The assumption of a need of protection is based on the experience that financial investors are usually structurally inferior to providers of financial services and products due to lack of professional knowledge, information or experience. Countries with stronger investor protections tend to grow faster than those with poor investor protections.