The last couple of years have changed the way we feel about money, wealth and spending. We are all hoping to ‘return to normal’ as soon as we can; but what if some of these behavioural changes hold the key to, not just returning to normal, but creating something even better entirely?
These are the lockdown money habits we think passionate investors shouldn’t cast aside, with their face masks and regular testing, but should instead keep for a lifetime.
Invest your paycheck before you spend it
Lockdown busted people’s habitual spending habits wide open. Taxi rides, holidays, hospitality — many of the places we spend money suddenly shut up shop, leaving us wondering what to do with our monthly paycheck.
The answer was often to save it, and perhaps spend it when the world opened up again. But the habit of saving money as soon as you get paid is one we should be keeping. Even better is investing the money as soon as you are paid. But why is investing better than saving?
Savings only grow at the interest rate your bank offers. But this rate is at historical lows and negative in many cases – money in the bank is like an idle engine, it won’t reach first gear unless you make the effort. Worse, governments’ historic spending during the pandemic has many economists predicting increased price inflation. This means that, in real terms, if you put your money in a bank account, it is actually shrinking, not growing, every month.
Investments, by contrast, have the chance to grow much faster than inflation, giving you real time updates that show changes in your wealth every month and keep your spending power in mind. If you keep one habit from the pandemic, make it this one!
Use your money to change the world
From climate change, to food banks, to bail funds, 2020 saw a rise in ordinary people using their money directly to effect the changes they want to see in the world. When the murder of George Floyd in Minneapolis precipitated a global moment in 2020, billions were donated to racial equality funds.
The realisation that money can make a difference is a strong lesson, and one we can also integrate into the way we live and invest. This is because where we put our money matters — and investing in the sectors you are passionate about can help accelerate positive change, speeding solutions from prototypes to products.
Moving our investments from polluting industries and non-inclusive companies lets decision makers know that we care about these values, and that there may be consequences if they don’t live up to them. Investing is a way to simultaneously express your values and potentially reach your financial dreams.
Prepare for big changes
The precise timing of the pandemic was not predictable — but the opinion that there would be a global pandemic, at some point during the 21st century, was long agreed by scientists and governments, many of whom had emergency responses planned in advance.
This is a lesson investors should take to heart. As we look towards the future, we believe there are changes we need to see. We believe we must care for an aging global population. We believe we must produce energy without polluting the planet. We also believe we must redesign cities to respond to technological innovation.
We believe that good investors will prepare for these changes by investing in the sectors and companies driving these necessary changes. Just as those who invested in the inevitability of video calls benefitted when the pandemic accelerated that change, so too will those backing the global Megatrends shaping our future.
Invest in world Megatrends with Gather
We have purposefully designed our platform to make it easy for you to practice the habits of the good investor. Invest with us today from £30/month, with no upper limit, and build up your own diverse portfolio of investments designed to help you reach your financial goals.
Gather helps you invest in the sectors and trends you’re passionate about, from Recycling & Plastics to FinTech and Real Estate. Our Investment Playlists are guided by BlackRock, the world’s largest asset management company.
The information provided by the blog are the opinions of the writer. As such, it should not be construed as investment advice.
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