It's funny you mention that! I was actually looking into investing in Office Depot since they are currently merging with Office Max and things might heat up. In terms of investing with a company, I would probably invest a lot more than what I am with Bitcoins. (Maybe $10-12,000 in various companies) With bitcoins, I'm a bit more skeptical, so I'm testing the water with $10. Are there any companies you would personally recommend?
An interesting area you can look into are REIT (real estate investment trust) stocks. In simple terms, they are companies that deal with real estate, and they are mandated by law to give back something on the lines of 90% of their income back to the shareholders in the form of dividends. So some of these stocks give dividends of 15% or more. This sector was actually hit really hard in the last 6 months or so and lost a lot of value (not exactly sure why), but it is predicted to make a strong comeback. So if you'd get into these, you might get gains in the stock value itself plus the dividends. One I'm invested in is American Capital Agency Corp. (ticker: AGNC). They used to have a dividend of about 20%, but it's been cut to around 13% due to their value dropping. Regardless of that, I've basically doubled my money just on the dividend payouts. This has been one of my favorite stocks of the past few years and I'm investing more into them since the price is low (and will hopefully go back up).
Energy stocks are also a hot commodity. Nuclear would have been a huge one to invest in hadn't Fukushima happened. Oil and Natural Gas will probably be booming industries in this country moving forward. Chesapeake Granite (ticket: CHKR) has been one I've been eyeing up. It has a 25% dividend and it's near year lows. It's mighty tasty!
Besides that, I've invested in everything from banks to tech stocks such as Intel, AMD, Sony, and Micron. All of them have done really well except for AMD.
I'm not too knowledgeable about this stuff, but I've basically played the "buy low, sell high" strategy. Find a big company that's stock value is close to year lows, and you'll almost guarantee to make profits fairly quickly. Yeah there's risk of losing money too, but there's potential for a buyout or an executive change, which will make the stock value explode. It's a great feeling when the crappy stock you've been "married" to goes up 120% in one day when it gets bought out.
www.marketwatch.com and www.seekingalpha.com are the two websites that I follow religiously. If anything, you'll learn a bit more about the business and finance world.