I’ve always likened investing as a journey. A journey to bring you from point A in life to point B. It is crucial to understand this analogy as it provides us with a basis to start planning for the long term.
Imagine you want to go to KL for a holiday. You could choose between traveling there by bus/car or simply by the airplane. Of course, there are pros and cons to each option. For instance, going by car would definitely take a longer time than the plane. But definitely also the cheaper alternative. This is also the parallels I would like to draw. There are many modes of investments that can bring you from one point of your financial journey to the next. And certainly they all have their pros and cons. Thus, it is essential for young investor like us to map out our financial journey and choose the one most appropriate to bring us to our destination.
There are many investment vehicles out there that we can employ, each of varying risks and rewards.
- Long term investing in shares (Blue chips) — relatively low risk, but also low return in the short term.
- Short term shares trading — this are people who trade stocks in the market. They tend to only hold a stock for one day or at most a week before they sell away their shares. Higher risk and more capital intensive.
- Contract for Difference — this is another mode of investment where investors purchase a contract with their broker which is not match to any underlying asset. For instance they could buy 10 lots of Facebook but they do not own physical shares of Facebook unlike those who buy from the market itself. Furthermore, within CFDs there are many ways to invest which I myself have yet to understand. Haha. Higher risks and more upfront capital is needed.
- FOREX — in the FOREX, investors can trade currencies of countries. For instance a typical FOREX investment could be buying an appreciation of the USD against the Sing dollar for instance. FOREX could be traded with CFDs too but let’s not get too far for now. Haha.
And many more…
Even endowment/ savings plan offered by insurance companies and the CPF scheme is an investment vehicle as well. Thus, the options available to us are aplenty and we must be crystal clear on how the investment vehicle work before delving into it. I will draw up a proper chart to profile some of the common investment vehicles and their risk/reward ratio when I am out of my army camp. Adios!!