By Onome Amuge
SFS Group, a leading investment management company, has emphasised the need for young Nigerians to build and create wealth through investments as a hedge against galloping inflation, lack of job security, rising unemployment rate, and quantum of headwinds ravaging the economy.
According to the company, the rising cost of goods and services has further weakened the purchasing power of Nigerians. As a result, more and more Nigerians are falling below the poverty line while those who rely basically on their monthly remuneration are at a disadvantage, considering the high prices and fixed level of income.
“The World Bank projects that over 90 million Nigerians will be poor at the end of 2022. This could even be more considering recent downsides in the macro and fiscal aspects of the Nigerian economy,” SFS Group said in a statement.
“The persistent depreciation of the local currency against the US dollar has also made the tale of the Nigerian economic headwind worse. Increased demand for FX and inadequate supply has seen the parallel market rate risen to a record high of N742/$1, while at the official market, it has surged to as high as N440 to a dollar,” it stated.
To this end, SFS noted that investments of one’s savings could give young Nigerians the opportunity to multiply their funds and safeguard against inflationary pressure. It further pointed out that keeping money idle in the Nigerian economy is tantamount to losing money, as the value of such funds will be eroded by rising cost of goods and services.
Being rich, the company said, is a function of wealth creation and the law of multiplying, which can only be done by investing and reinvesting.
Oma Ehiri, head of communications for SFS Group, said there are several investment opportunities for Nigerians to build and create wealth, ranging from stocks, fixed income instruments such as treasury bills, bonds, ETFS, amongst others.
Ehiri encouraged young Nigerians to leverage on investment opportunities while still agile and energetic. She listed rich and wealthy businessmen and billionaires who started their investment journeys at a young age, including Elon Musk, Bernard Arnault, Jeff Bezos, Bill Gates, Warren Buffett, Aliko Dangote, Femi Otedola, Tony Elumelu, amongst other astute businessmen in various sectors of the economy.
“While we celebrate their wealth and are inspired by their success stories, a common trait that can be found from these magnates is their continuous eye for investment opportunities. More interestingly is the fact that they started their investment journeys at a very young age,” Ehiri said.
“Aliko Dangote is reported to have started investment at the age of 21, shortly after graduating from college. Femi Otedola started much earlier at the age of 6, after starting a business he called Femco. The same trait can be found in almost all successful businessmen and investors,” she stated.
Ehiri further recommended mutual funds as a much more suitable investment vehicle for passive investors who do not have as much time to monitor the events in the market.
A mutual fund, she explained, pools money from many investors which is afterwards invested in securities such as stocks, bonds, and short-term debt. As a result, each shareholder who buys into the mutual funds participates proportionally in the gain or loss of the fund.
Commenting on the advantages of engaging in mutual funds, she noted that the funds are managed professionally by investment experts, hence offering the participants the advantage of diversification, affordability, liquidity, transparency, and professional management. She said that mutual funds are also adequately regulated as they are required to be registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission and are obliged to follow strict regulations designed to protect investors.
“A major advantage of investing in mutual funds is that investors can continue their usual daily routine jobs and be sure that there are experts monitoring the performance of their investment and will make adequate investment decisions in their favour to maximise returns,” she noted.
Ehiri also stressed the importance for investors to be able to buy into any mutual fund of their choice from their comfort, be it at work or at home, one which SFS Fund Mobile App provides its several clients across Nigeria.