MaLish goes finance

For some reason the topic investments and finances is not “sexy” and often left to someone else to make the investment decision. Many of us park their money at the local bank and are quick to agree to whatever the bank is suggesting – just to get it over with. We have little idea what the bank is doing with our money; we only see the result in form of positive or negative margins. This is not to point fingers – we were and are still among those kind of “investors”.
This is not to say that you should invest now on your own e.g. on the stock market or open a micro finance bank, but make sure you know what happens to your money and where your money is going because your money can make an impact for your life and also others.

“Be the best version of yourself”

Maike Benner

There are various forms of investments. The best kind of investments are those were you get a return for a life time and you become or stay independent. What comes to my mind first is the investment in yourself. If you have a good education and you learn how to make a living out of it, this will always help to overcome difficult times and no matter what happens to you personally, your environment, the economy – you will always be able to leverage the assets gained through the investment in your education. For me this meant going to university and obtaining Bachelor and Master degrees, for someone else this may be getting vocational training at an employer, private courses, books etc.
The second most important investment is the one that secures your basic living. In some countries – and Germany is among them – you pay taxes and the government will support you should you lose your job or if you retire. As these sums will not allow you to live comfortably, you might want to think about private pension and unemployment plans.

Are you financially secured for your retirement?

Lilli Rohde

We are young, active, healthy and think that nothing can stop us. We enjoy our life and are spending our money on vacation, food, clothes, hobbies and other fun stuff. We seldom think about what comes thereafter. Only if we have parents or grandparents which get older and are confronted with their financial situation we start thinking about our own set up.
The population is getting older and older all over the world. The share of >65 years old is 26% higher than the share of <25 years old in Germany and tendency shows growing shares for the >65.
Isn´t it time for us to have a look on how we want to be positioned when we reach our retirement age? Don´t we want to keep our hobbies, restaurant visits, travels and shopping? Without limitation? I think yes! That´s why you should not forget to take care of it NOW! There are many opportunities to take care of your financial security. I started to invest in my retirement the day I started to earn money. Every country has it´s specialties in insurance, government aid, and possibilities for investing in your older self.
I highly recommend to have a look on your local government aid, to check out insurances and compare them. There are a lot of different programs available depending on your financial input. To talk to people who are already retired and are living a lifestyle which is imaginable for you. And talk also to people who don´t. Here you can learn a lot and draw your own conclusions.

MaLish at European central bank

Uncertainty, risk, reward, security…

Maike Benner

Now it becomes interesting. Let’s say the above basic provisions are covered and you have money to invest or want a greater return on your money.
It goes without saying and it’s obvious without opening a text book on finance: the higher the risk and uncertainty, the higher the return.
Currently the interest rates at the banks are very low. If you park your money there, you might not get a return as also the inflation will “eat away” your poor margins. Yet most likely your bank will not get bankrupt and the money is readily available anytime you want to use it for something else.
Some say real estate is a low risk investment. I happen to disagree. Yes, it’s still “cheap” to get a loan and house prices are still climbing in most cities. But is this sustainable? Will the prices for real estate continue growing or will prices drop dramatically if there is overcapacity in the market, people can no longer afford to buy these houses or the interest rates skyrocket in 5-10 years and the loans are not paid of yet? Yet regarding real estate as part of your pension plan is of cause a valid cause and can lead to independence once you are old and the loan is paid off. Just do yourself the favour and calculate very carefully and take best, most likely and worst case scenarios into account.

I personally like sustainable investments in e.g. renewable energies, new technologies, sustainable mirco-financing. You do something great and sustainable, are often rewarded with good margins, yet you bear the full risk if this investment fails and the entire money could be gone. I don’t know about you, but I can accept the risk of financing much better if I know I helped a company/item develop a new technology, act sustainably or be a partner to their local communities.
Still I would not invest all my money and I only make the decision once I understood the investment (or at least think I have). Another option can be to invest in sustainable fonds or banks where you lower the risk as you invest in a “basket of investments”.

To trade or not to trade – this is not the question

Lilli Rohde

I am text block. Click edit button to change this text. Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Ut elit tellus, luctus nec ullamcorper mattis, pulvinar dapibus leo.Have you ever thought about trading stock? Or do you have immediately the pictures and story from Wall Street or Wolf of Wall Street in mind? People getting rich fast and end up in jail at the end. I must admit I had the same prejudice. Being financially safe in a prestigious job in the corporate world didn´t make me think about trading or investing.
When we started our own business and life as entrepreneurs automatically keywords as passive income, investing and financial freedom come across your way.
With this background I remembered my first stock trading experience when I was 17 and my bank consultant, who is a really smart guy, talked me into buying some shares for 3 years of an automotive company. It was the time when I start working in the automotive branch and I thought why not. I bought shares for 500 euro and forgot about it. I received yearly a letter from the company informing about the progress, but honestly speaking I never read it. After three years, it was the time when I was planning to buy a car and needed money, I remembered that shares. I called my bank guy and told him to sell, as I was in the need of money. After two days he called me to tell that it was the best timing to sell: I received 2500 euro and he informed that after the sale the company announced their bankruptcy. I felt really lucky to get out of this with a plus. I didn´t ask how it could happen and what was behind I just trusted my bank consultant in this case.
Now 16 years later I had a burning desire to get myself educated on stock trading and try it by myself. Our world offers us different opportunities in apps, online courses and fully available information wherever you are. I want to have passive income and be financially free that´s why I started to research on online trading. For me it is an easy way to have access via apps to your financial decision any time – at any place just with your smartphone. This have been the catchy words for me.
So I started with online trading for dummies to have a full picture of how and what. To have an understanding of the “language” and where and how to start. I compared different apps and courses and decided to start with one test account for a month to get used to it. After I’ve figured out how it works it is now a daily routine for me in my test account to trade 15 min a day. And I must admit I do quite good and after finishing the test month I will start to trade with real money. I would have never thought about, but I have signed in a trading course as well.
We want to motivate you to think out of the box and to dare with topics related to finance, even if you have no clue at all. Use the opportunities you get and educate yourself.

We hope you did not expect to receive an investment recommendation. This is a very personal decision.

  • The first step is to start acknowledging that you are the captain of your life and also your finances.
  • Secondly you should think about what kind of investor you want to be (risk taker, moderate return, for yourself or your kind, for mankind).
  • And thirdly you should start informing yourself. You could read newspapers, listen to podcasts, follow experts on social media or go to conferences to hear how other people have done it so you can decided on a strategy for yourself.

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