Investment planning involves the assessment of your financial needs and objectives and how they will be met.
We help you understand the many very important aspects of investment planning such as:
The relationship between risk and reward:
In an ideal world everyone wants high investment returns, with no risk, however in reality a balance needs to be struck between the potentially higher returns that an investment exposed to greater volatility and risk can offer, as opposed to a no risk [or low risk] investment, which provides peace of mind, but may also fail to meet your financial needs and objectives.
When the prices of goods and services rise faster than your income, your standard of living declines. For most people, this is the biggest single risk to maintaining their lifestyle in retirement. It is therefore essential that investment planning takes into account the hugely negative effect inflation has on the value of money.
Stock market volatility:
Sudden rises and falls in the value of shares quoted on the world’s stock markets, can be a nerve wracking experience for investors. It is however important to understand that market corrections [i.e. falls in share prices] create buying opportunities for fund managers, which can significantly benefit investors over time. A period of sudden volatility in stock markets can be likened to turbulence on a flight. If an aeroplane hits turbulence you don’t get up and run around, you fasten your seat belt. In most instances the same applies to investing and sitting tight is usually the safest course of action.
The benefits of long term investing:
Investors are likely to have short, medium and long term financial needs and different investment strategies will be utilized to meet those needs. It should however be remembered that the creation of real wealth is a long term business. The length of time spent invested in the market is more important than trying to time when to be in the market. Missing the best few investment days of a year can have a hugely detrimental effect on investment returns. In other words if you have a correctly constructed investment strategy in place, stick to it and do not chop and change.
The tax treatment of different investment vehicles needs to be taken into account when making investment decisions, as does an individual’s tax situation. Comprehensive financial planning will reveal which investment vehicles are appropriate.
The importance of diversification across asset classes and fund managers:
The old adage “Don’t put all your eggs in one basket” still holds true and diversification undoubtedly reduces risk.
The behavioural cost of making investment decisions based on emotion:
This is one of the most difficult aspects of investment planning, but also one of the most important. The two most destructive emotions are greed and fear. Never forget that if it looks too good to be true it probably is. Conversely, comprehensive investment planning means that when investment values have fallen and an individual is feeling fearful, it is important to stick to your investment strategy.
Lifestyle Financial Planning addresses all these topics and provides the basis for making well informed and appropriate investment decisions.
Want to know more about Investment Planning?
Send us your details and we will make contact with you.