By JOHN BERLAU
Investors Business Daily
Imagine you had a time machine and could go on a stock-buying spree 25 years ago. Yet you didn't bring that much cash on board.
You could do pretty well investing in the growing firms of Wal-Mart Stores or Apple. But you'd make a killing on this retailer that had just recently gone public with only four stores to its name. Buying 100 shares of Home Depot in 1982 would yield you $1.6 million by 2002.
But time travelers coming back to 2007, even with a fistful of stock market data, probably won't be so lucky. Neither will today's savvy investors who study past trends in publications such as Investor's Business Daily. This is because a law sold as protecting investors from fraud is actually hurting investors' ability to grow wealthy with legitimate firms.