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Start investing now, it’s never too late

Market volatility should not deter prospective investors from investing, and for those who have not started, it is never too late.

This is an advice of Carin Meyer, head of Share Investing at South Africa’s First National Bank (FNB).  “The market is volatile, but it is able to self over the long term, Meyer said, adding that the sooner one starts investing the better.

“Getting started is a big step, and it is always better to start small and then build-up your portfolio over time. While it’s not easy to tell when the market will turn around, waiting and postponing the decision to invest is a big a big mistake.”

Meyer underlined the following top reasons to get started:

• It is easier than you think
Investing is not as complicated as it is sometimes made out to be, anyone can open an investment account without having to pay for broker services. Exchange Traded Funds (ETF’s) are the most practical option if you want exposure to Johannesburg Stock Exchange’s listed shares. Starting from R300 (US$20) a month any prospective investor can open an account and invest in the top 100 Johannesburg Stock Exchange companies

• Compound interest
Imagine staying invested long enough for you to start earning interest on interest, this is what compound interest does – you realise growth on original interest earned. This can only happen when you stay invested for the long-term.

• You can start small
Contrary to popular belief, investing is not about putting aside large amounts of money. As a first step decide how much you can afford to put aside on a monthly basis and then have a scheduled transfer from your account, you won’t have to worry about transferring the money yourself.

Once you have formed a habit of saving, you can start increasing the amount steadily without disrupting other financial obligations.

• Earn a high return on your investment
Deciding to invest opens up the possibility of earning growth on your money. This however depends on the type of investment vehicle you choose. Speak to your financial services provider to find out which product is best suited to your needs and match this to you risk appetite.

It is important to realise that starting to invest does not have to cost large sums of money, all one needs is determination and the commitment to be in it for the long-term, Meyer said.

FNB is one of South Africa’s largest banks alongside Standard Bank, ABSA and Nedbank.

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