The February month reached so fast and Ragini, a software engineer in a multinational company, sat to calculate how much she had managed to invest for the future of her family and herself over the last year. But unfortunately she could not move ahead beyond the grand sum of a few thousand rupees in her saving fund account plus mandatory deductions for the share into the Contributory Provident Fund (CPF) and Group Insurance Scheme (GIS).
In one of the latest surveys, it has been revealed that 92 percent of working women are involved in the investment decision-making process, out of this 70 percent of these women are joint decision- makers. And, most importantly, as good as 52 percent of these fair sex are not so fortunate. They are only informed where their hard-earned money has been invested by their husbands, parents and close relatives.
Further when it comes to the matter of trust on the financial institutes, it is really a bizarre fact that 88 per cent of working women trust nationalized commercial banks. Also 43 percent of them have full faith on the private banks and when it comes to the matter of trusting foreign banks, the percentage of these working women further plummets down to as low as merely 24.
Following points may considerably help the working women in their efforts of making wise investment decisions:
Why to invest:
With soaring rise in the prices of commodities the rate of inflation is persistently rising every year that too at exorbitant rate. The average rise in inflation per year is said to be between 7.5 to 8 per cent. This high rise in consumer price index considerably brings down both the values of money and the standard of living of the common masses. Even though you might have saved money in your bank account but this would not fetch you much in the long run to sustain the same style of life which you are enjoying now. So, it is very much desirable on your part that you make a rational decision to invest in those segments which yield you very high returns.
Prioritize your financial goals
While making decisions to invest your money in various segments what you must not forget is about clarifying your goals. You must be very much specific about setting goals for all the financial investments you are planning to make. It also means prioritizing your financial goals. The goals may be divided into two – short term or mid-term and long term.
Suppose you need to purchase a house in the span of ten years or a car in five years then the best investment choice would be in equity or real estate whereas if you are planning to pay only college tuition fee or down payment for the purchase of vehicle next year then what is most suitable is to invest in some short term investment policies. Investments in stocks, bonds, real estate are considered as the long term investments. Investment in trading securities makes short-term investment. Building an emergency fund also proves to be one of the important short-term investments.
Benjamin Franklin had said that in this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes. There is no denying that we are always seriously concerned with protecting our money and assets for the future and for this we take help of investment professionals and financial experts. We purchase many of the policies and invest our money in various high-returns-accruing-schemes. Majority of the people are really fortunate to have their money well managed by professionals and finance experts. But what they usually overlook is their own selves. They don’t get insured for themselves. In fact, insuring oneself directly means insuring the financial well-being of your family and dependants. So, a good rule of thumb is you must first have your life insured. But before insuring yourself it is necessary to take into account your total liabilities. These liabilities may well include various types of debts, inter alia, children’s education loan, home loans and car loans. Your insurance must be in proportion with all these liabilities.
Don’t Ignore Liquidity
Life is uncertain and contingencies are its inevitable part. Investing your hard - earned money is a good decision but keeping aside a few months’ worth of expenditures in the form of liquid is golden decision to brave the urgent needs which may crop up at the moments when it is least expected. Keeping sufficient amount of cash with yourself helps a lot dealing in daily transactions and serve as precautionary measures.
The great entrepreneur and the founder of Apple Inc once had said, “Sometimes when you innovate, you make mistakes. It is best to admit them quickly, and get on with improving your other innovations.” In this 21st century global age of information technology there is no dearth of information, guidance and counselling.
From professional help to the experts’ suggestions to the social networking sites and finally to the internet browsing, we are virtually surrounded with details of risk-free high returns policies and investments schemes in the market which we need to make deep research into. They say that the longest journey of the world starts with a single step. So, start making decisions about investing and that would fill you with amazing confidence. There is no other way round. So, start investing and thereby taking risks. Only a persistent investor can make you a master investor.
Do a Detailed Homework:
It means a working woman must calculate how much of money she can comfortably invest in the market. For this she must have clear cut calculation of all the annual financial liabilities and then decide about the best avenue available to invest into. Further, you must consider the goals for which you are planning to invest - either for short –term goal or long term goal. Don’t be afraid of the risks which are always both in business and life.
They say that no one is ever perfect and we learn most when we commit mistakes most. That is why learning is called as life-long process. So, be confident and start taking decisions by yourself to make investments which would end up providing you courage, high returns and beautiful future.
(Author is Principal, Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalaya, Dinthar Veng, Mamit)