A popular phrase we hear is "you have to spend money to make money". But I am always curious about what to do with the money you have and how to simply keep it in your pocket; or at least invest it wisely.
"I don’t think it is an exaggeration to say that financial literacy, economic empowerment, and wealth building is going to be the last leg of the civil rights movement.
Because one step toward financial literacy takes you two steps toward personal empowerment.”
Financial literacy is an important step in improving yourself! And I am all for it honey!
Bettering yourself is all about learning, discovering, and researching. Many of us are learning to invest in ourselves.
And, investing in ourselves looks different for each of us; it depends on your individual needs and/or desires.
Some of us need self-care, therapy, our grooming needs meet, and some to get "ahead in life". Just as we are learning what investing in ourselves looks like we can apply that to learning about investing our finances.
Many of the things we are looking to improve within our lives, comes from earning more so that you can live the life you envision.
Yes we should invest in ourselves directly by doing things that make us happy. But many would say that, "Money can not buy happiness, however it can provide you with comfort and stability". I think I speak for many of us when I say, I sleep a lot better when the bills are paid and there's extra money in the bank.
I interviewed Jerome Raphael who specializes in financial literacy to uncover what investing looks like from trading to stocks, ways we can become financially literate, and more!
Read below and check out some of my favorite moments on IGtv!
Introduce yourself and the services you offer in regards to finances. My name is Jerome Raphael. I'm from the Bronx, New York and I started the Price Vision Academy. It came from a vision of understanding who I am as a person and my life journey. I realized that people are stuck in toxic environments because they can't get out of it; they need the money.
Like people at jobs and corporations, they feel that they can't be themselves, like they're not valued at their jobs. So I decided to create an organization that can teach these people how to make enough money, understand finance and the financial market.
Understand how to use the money they have to make more money from it. Also to learn how to navigate the financial market so that they can be more of an asset to their company.
It's an online platform with resources that teaches people who to trade in the financial market.
What is a common misconception behind investing?
A lot of millennials think they need to make a lot of money to invest. When that's not true. You can start investing with whatever you are making now, it's all about the rules which we'll get into later.
Another misconception about investing is that it's gambling, that you don't know what will happen in the market. That's not true. If you are educated and doing your research, then you will form a bias which will tell you which way to go in the market. But you have to seek the knowledge and do the research.
You are taking a risk, but it's an educated risk.
What are some ways they can research stocks and investing?
The thing about trying to learn a skill set, you have to surround yourself in that type of environment. Whether it's joining a Clubhouse or Twitter, it's being in those spaces so that you can be a part of those conversations because when you are a part of those conversations you're picking up new things; you're learning. And then you start doing your own research; you have to do you due diligence. Which is also important.
It's a matter of deciding and committing to do it, writing a goal "Like everyday this week I'm going to spend five minutes in talking to someone about finance".
You just have to put yourself out there and the universe will reward you.
What exactly are stocks? What is the stock exchange?
The companies that are out there, for example Apple and Amazon, the reason why they are able to grow as a company is because that provide a lot of value, and when they provide value people go to these exchanges to purchase some of that company. So when you purchase a stock it's essentially a security that proves that you own a portion of the company, they're called shares.
When more people invest in that company, its drives the price of the stock up, because of supply and demand, now that stock has gained value and the difference in that is your profit. It works the same way in reverse, if less people are buying into that company.
It's simply a piece of a company that you own and can sell or trade at will.
What’s the easiest way to start investing in stocks?
Asking questions. Being inquisitive. You have to take the initiative and want to learn. Google and Youtube are your best resources. You have to ask yourself "how" and "why".
Go on Twitter and Instagram, look at the hashtags investing, finance, trading; follow those people, start consuming material.
So a few months back Robinhood' went through some backlash about freezing investments in Game Stop. What can we learn from this and what are your thoughts?
There's a Reddit thread or group, from what I know, they were planning against a hedge fund. Now hedge funds are these groups of people that have a large amount of money, and their sole purpose is to drive the price of a company down and make money for their investors. So this group on Reddit planned to trap these hedge funds in a move using Gamestop and AMC. Things worked out and they were able to catch these hedge funds, all of the main brokers, mostly Robinhood but others as well, had to stop allowing people to buy more because they didn't want the price to go up. Then hedge funds had to bail themselves out.
I think one of the best outcomes of this is that people are seeing what's happening within the market. It opened a lot of peoples eyes.
And people made a lot of money. It was game changing for people. People's lives were changed in the beginning of the year because of this.
And now people are actually learning and researching on their own.
I'm sure someone will make a movie about this, like they did the 2008 financial crisis.
So I want to shift into trading. What is trading? And what are the basic fundamentals of it?
When you are a participant in the financial market, in terms of trying to profit, you can do two things: trade or invest. Investing is more long term. Whereas though trading is short term, so when we talk about trading you are looking to enter and be out of the market between a couple of minutes to a couples of weeks. Maybe a few months, but mostly trading is done from minutes to up to three weeks.
Trading essentially, you're buying a commodity at one price with the intent to sell it at a higher price and you're using technical and fundamental analysis to understand or predict where price is going to go at a certain time.
There are thousands of trading strategies that are out there, but it all depends on who you are as a person. The one you decide to adopt, the one you are profitable with because it works with your personality.
What’s the biggest difference in stocks versus trading?
Stocks have intrinsic value, that stock can go to zero, but you still own that stock no matter what.
But when you are trading currencies , you are trading it against another currency, for example trading the USD versus the EURO. You're saying that this currency is going to lower in value compared to this other currency and by how much. So if you are shorting or going long that it how you profit.
In stocks you want to look at companies that will increase in value so that you can buy and get out at a higher price.
I see that you have the crypto-journey that those going to your site can start. Can you touch on what crypto is, and one can tap into that market as well?
Crypto is still in it's very early phase. Essentially it was created in the late 2000's, it's a bunch of transactions that are happening around the world that are tied to a block chain. This is all done digitally it's self sustaining.
Now people have created their own crypto currencies there are platforms out there that take crypto/bitcoin as payment.
I would recommend Mike Maloney's, "Hidden secrets of money", if you are looking to learn more. It's a great resource.
With many getting refunds and stimulus assistance, what’s the best way in your opinion to invest your money wisely?
It depends on the person and what they have going on. If you don't have an emergency fund, I would put that $1400 in an emergency fund, build your savings up.
When it comes to financial literacy budgeting, the 70-20-10 rule applies, where you use 70% for your expenses, 20% for your debts, and 10% for investing.
So, no matter where you are financially, if you invest 10% of every dollar you get, you will chip away over time and grow. You know that no matter what's coming in that you are creating that budget.
Get into investing. They say the first best time to invest was yesterday the second best time is right now! So just get into it!
I notice an increase in Forex Trading and many accounts looking to recruit. How can we decipher between the ones that are legit and ones that are spam?
Forex is the largest market in the world, 6.3 trillion dollars is exchanged on the daily basis on that market. So being able to trade that market and profit off of it is appealing to many people. There are companies out there that will teach people how to trade, and they pay them a monthly fee.
But they have another compensation package, where recruiters are paid per recruit they bring in to learn how to trade. The problem that's occurring is that many are just bringing in recruits to make money off each head count versus focusing on the actual trading/learning these organizations were built to do.
Because they are trying to recruit so many they now start doing unethical techniques like posting fake profits, showing an enticing lifestyle, when in actuality they probably did not make that money from trading, but from recruits.
How can the black community, particularly those in lower to middle class become more financially literate?
If you have an internet connection, then you already have the tools, you just have to focus and commit, and internet in googling and researching the right topics. Being part of the conversations and groups. Again Clubhouse and Twitter are great resources to learn at whatever level you're at about what to do with your money.
You have to commit to it, but it has to speak to you. Being consistent at it.
You need to wake up and have daily affirmations and goals.
How can those seeing the blog get in touch with you about start a journey into financial literacy and more ?
Follow me on Twitter @jcrxci and Instagram @jcr.xci.
Explore more of what Jerome has to offer by checking out Price Vision Academy!