Who has the time to study the markets, keep track of individual company news, and pay attention to the economy day after day after day? If you're a novice investor, the task of becoming familiar with investment concepts and jargon is that much harder. And it's the rare investor who has thousands or even millions of dollars to make a meaningful investment in more than a few stocks or bonds at a time. For all of these reasons, millions of investors pool their money into what is called a mutual fund. Stop here to learn what they are, how they work, and what makes them appealing to so many people.