The Panel: What are you investing in?

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Charlotte Fielding is based in Wellington.

Charlotte Fielding is a writer who lives in Wellington with her son and dog. She moved into a house bus to save money on rent.

What investments do you have and why?

Investing is something I wish I knew more about. I have a small Sharesies portfolio, which I contribute a fixed amount to each week. Because it’s only a small amount, and because I don’t really know what I’m doing, I’ve so far managed to lose money on my investment, but I know it is a longer-term thing. Because I’m a single mother living in an expensive city, I don’t have much spare income to play around with, so there is limited potential return on my shares investment. I also have KiwiSaver, which I find reassuring to have.

Losing money on my shares is good motivation to learn more about how to do investing well. It’s a skill that would have been useful to learn in school, but there were no financial literacy lessons when I was in high school. I used to think people who invested in stocks were a certain type of person, and I wasn’t that type – but as I’ve gotten older, and as buying shares has become more accessible with online tools, I’ve come to see it as something useful for me to do.

Having ADHD means I’m not necessarily good at long-term financial planning, and it’s hard to resist impulse spending sometimes. Having my small shares portfolio is useful even just as a savings account, as it is harder to access the funds than a bank account. I’m trying to teach my son more about how to manage finances smartly, and learning myself at the same time.

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Te Kahukura Boynton is a student at University of Waikato.

Te Kahukura Boynton is founder of Māori Millionaire. She is a second-year law student at the University of Waikato.

What investments do you have and why?

I like investing in stocks because they’re a great way to enter the investing market with a low starting out amount. I wouldn’t be able to enter something larger such as the housing market due to my age and income. I use Hatch and Sharesies to invest in managed funds like the S&P500 and some NZ funds like the Tahito one. I like managed funds because they are diversified across different industries and so I only need to add diversification by entering a different market geographically. I think that long-term it is always best to have a well diversified portfolio across different asset classes and this is why I am looking at entering the cryptocurrency market, housing market, gold/silver and why I’ve also started my own business.

Another great investment which I am regularly buying into is myself. I invest in myself by spending time becoming better educated, becoming more skilled, and a better, more well-rounded human. This will allow me to be profitable in the future and also stands true to my thinking that the best investment you can make is in yourself.

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Anissa Ljanta

Anissa Ljanta is a writer and lead for the Digital Equity Coalition Aotearoa (DECA), living rural on Auckland’s west coast with teen and rescue animals.

What investments do you have and why?

Jumping on the capitalist bandwagon has never appealed and where I live, holiday homes and sky-high rentals displace families. It’s hard to stomach property investment resulting in empty houses when there are people desperate for homes.

The only investment on my mind is the one our government needs to make to bridge the widening digital divide. It’s budget time and the digital inclusion community’s fingers are collectively crossed but talk of austerity rarely means anything good for equity issues.

The recent BNZ Digital Skills Report reveals 20% of New Zealanders still don’t have the digital skills essential for modern life. Older people, those negatively affected by racism and/or on lower incomes, and our migrant and disabled communities are disproportionately represented. People need affordable internet, appropriate devices, digital skills training in trusted spaces, and digital advocate support embedded in their communities.

Being digitally connected and confident translates into access to health services, being able to find housing and work, facilitating learning and improving wellbeing with feeling connected to friends and whanau. Choosing not to bridge the digital divide with community designed initiatives costs us all in long run. Investing in digital inclusion is long overdue.

But coming back to me. No investments. Unless seed saving counts.