You’ve probably heard the news: The Philippines has one of the most vibrant economies in the world, rising faster than any other country in Asia next to China. We are no longer “the sick man of Asia,” but “Asia’s rising tiger.”
Unfortunately, it’s hard to feel these economic gains if your money is simply lying in your piggy bank or savings account. While it makes sense to save for the rainy days, majority of personal finance experts would also advise you to allocate a portion of these savings into promising investments. These have the potential to double or even triple your capital in the long run.
Take a look at the following investment vehicles and see what best fits you:
If you want your money to earn interest, you can invest in credit instruments like bonds. Essentially, bonds are contracts in which an investor lends money to a borrower, like the government or a corporation. The borrower then agrees to pay interest at a fixed amount.
These investments are good for those who want security and have low risk tolerance. If your financial goal is to protect your capital, then bonds certainly fare better than stocks. But since it has minimal risks, expect the returns to also be minimal and incomparable with what you might possibly get from equities.
Mutual funds are basically pooled funds from various investors managed by professional fund managers. When you pool your money with other investors, you create a bigger capital that can be invested in various instruments like bonds, stocks, and foreign exchange.
One of the biggest advantages of mutual funds is diversification, which lowers your exposure to risks. If one investment fails, you don’t lose all your capital because it is invested in other channels. You can earn from mutual funds through asset appreciation, interest, and dividends. Choosing the type of mutual fund—fixed income, money market, equity, or balanced—depends on your financial goals and risk profile.
Buying a stock from a company means you become part owner of that company. Many financial experts would tell you that now is the best time to invest in the local stock market, since the Philippine Stock Exchange has been outperforming even some of the biggest markets around the world. Investing in the stock market gives you high returns, especially over the long term.
However, it is also highly risky, as you could lose a significant amount of your capital if you don’t have a strategy in place. Though the basic principle is to buy shares at a low price and sell them at a high price, you need to study the market first and keep yourself updated on the companies that you’re investing in to make sure that you maximize your earnings.
Putting up a sound and profitable business is also a great way to make your hard-earned money work for you. All you need is capital and a good business idea that responds to the needs of your target consumers. You also need to have the right attitude towards business, and that includes a lot of patience, optimism, and guts.
If you’re not too confident that you can start a business, maybe you should consider franchising. This is advisable to startup entrepreneurs who have yet to gain business management experience. This way, you can take advantage of a brand’s popularity and strength to make your venture profitable.
Finally, investing in your own financial education is your most valuable asset when it comes to building wealth. That means grabbing every learning opportunity that comes your way. You won’t be able to successfully invest in bonds, stocks, businesses, and mutual funds if you have no idea what you’re doing. Warren Buffett is even said to allot 80 percent of his working day to reading and learning and 20 percent to actual investing.
These days, there are no excuses for lack of knowledge. You have the whole Internet at your disposal, and a simple Google search on the basics of investing will yield thousands of results. You can also use free apps like Born2Invest to get your daily fix of business and finance news that will help you make the right investment choices.
There are also countless financial seminars that you can attend to expand your knowledge base and network with like-minded people. Take full advantage of the booming Philippine economy through investing in it. Consider the amount of money you have, your financial goals, and your risk aversion to help you choose the investment vehicle that’s right for you.
**This is a guest post from Born2Invest.
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