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
Types of investors 
The following classes of investors are not mutually exclusive:
- Individuals gambling in games of chance.
- Individual investors (including trusts on behalf of individuals, and umbrella companies formed by two or more to pool investment funds)
- Collectors of art, antiques, and other things of value
- Angel investors (individuals and groups)
- Sweat equity investor
- Venture capital funds, which serve as investment collectives on behalf of individuals, companies, pension plans, insurance reserves, or other funds.
- Businesses that make investments, either directly or via a captive fund
- Investment trusts, including real estate investment trusts
- Mutual funds, hedge funds, and other funds, ownership of which may or may not be publicly traded (these funds typically pool money raised from their owner-subscribers to invest in securities)
- Sovereign wealth funds
Also, investors might be classified according to their styles. In this respect, an important distinctive investor psychology trait is risk attitude.
Investor protection 
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.
See also 
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Wall Street Journal (blog)
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