A speculator is someone who takes a chance on losing a lot of money when there's a prospect of making even more money. A speculator might, for example, invest in a risky stock in the hopes she can sell it eventually at a profit.

In a way, everyone who invests in the financial market is a bit of a speculator — the possibility of losing money is always there, as is a chance (and hope) of making money. Gamblers are speculators too, hoping to win big but vulnerable to losing everything on a poker game. Less commonly, a speculator is simply someone who speculates, or guesses without enough information. The financial meaning dates from the 18th century.

Definitions of speculator
  1. noun
    someone who risks losses for the possibility of considerable gains
    synonyms: plunger
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    someone who counterbalances one transaction (as a bet) against another in order to protect against loss
    a speculator who trades aggressively on stock or commodity markets
    someone who buys something and resells it at a price far above the initial cost
    venture capitalist
    a speculator who makes money available for innovative projects (especially in high technology)
    ticket tout, tout
    someone who buys tickets to an event in order to resell them at a profit
    type of:
    adventurer, venturer
    a person who enjoys taking risks
    a person who wagers money on the outcome of games or sporting events
  2. noun
    someone who makes conjectures without knowing the facts
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    type of:
    someone who exercises the mind (usually in an effort to reach a decision)
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