We'll have to agree to disagree about this. Here is what I see as VERY different: 1. if you buy a business and you are the owner, then you are either a large part of, or sometimes even all of, management for the company! 2. many people who buy a business actively WORK for the business. The above two factors alone make it VERY different, IMO. I totally understand what you are saying, but there's no way that I think that a.) being the owner/manager of a business that you actually work for and manage is somehow comparable to b.) owning a part of a business as stock holdings that you have virtually no control over. This conversation is occurring not because you and I don't have a good grasp of "investing vs. trading vs. gambling" but because I believe that many people are easily mislead about investing, trading, the economy, stock markets, etc. and I would hate for someone coming to these forums trying to learn about those topics to go away with the idea that "... investing in, not trading stocks ..." is "... not that different than owning your own business..." ?!?!