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Sunday, January 4, 2009

Best way to invest RM50,000 now

Have some cash to invest? Three experts were asked what would be the best way to invest RM50,000 and below are their responses.

Andy Tang
Executive Director
Head of Performance Development
Great Vision Advisory Group

First of all, we need to know what is the purpose of the savings? Is it for short-term use? Medium or long-term usage?

Our money should be allocated into three portions: liquidity, profit and security. Usually, money in the liquidity portion is meant for short-term use. The money allocated for the profit portion is mainly for investment, hedging for higher return (either to re-invest in business, the share market, etc.), whereas money allocated for security purpose is meant for long-term use such as retirement, long-term care, education and lifestyle.

For liquidity purposes, which is mainly for the short term, it usually involves savings accounts, current accounts, fixed deposits or short-term income funds.

The ideal ratio of funds to be utilised is 20% for liquidity, 35% for profitability and 45% for security. Of course, the ratio is different from time to time and from one individual to another.

While making the allocation, it is a must to re-visit or review other essential planning such as a healthcare plan, family income protection plan, future income protection plan, critical illness coverage plan, debt cancellation, mortgage protection plan and mortgage review, life insurance and estate planning.

Before making any decision on the RM50,000, we need to identify the end in mind to avoid any disappointment.

First, we have to review and identify what other financial resources we have and only then proceed with the plan.

In conclusion, after checking and reviewing your personal cashflow, this is not only the RM50,000 that we should plan for but it could involve the ongoing securing of wealth from your yearly surplus in order to ensure wealth preservation and accumulation for the future. For a better picture of the entire planning, it is always advisable to look for the capable financial adviser.

Reginald Yoganathan Hunt
Senior Group Sales Manager

Great Eastern Life Assurance (Malaysia) Berhad

Investing RM50,000 over a period of six to 10 years. There are a number of financial instruments that yield higher than the fixed deposit and give a reasonable return of 7%–9% a year.

·Investment-linked single premium with a reputable life insurance company. Equity funds have shown to generate 8% to 10% return over a period of seven to 10 years but there is also the danger of a market crash where you may end up poorer. Bond funds give a lower return and are safer.

Real estate investment trusts (REITs) have recently sprung up and with quality buildings and high rental rates, a fair income can be assumed and reasonable returns could be expected.

·Unit trusts have been in the scene for quite some time. Most of them are life insurance or bank-backed organisations and they have also shown consistent returns.

·Structured products have recently come into the scene. Insurance companies and banks have moved into cash on low fixed deposit rates. As the experience is still in its infancy stage, we will have to wait to see if they perform well.

My recommendation would be to invest in investment-linked single premium product. Half of the RM50,000 can be invested in bonds and the other half in equities.

Robert Foo
Managing Director and Principal Consultant

MyFP Services Sdn Bhd

We should aim to get real returns of about 5% to 6% after deducting the inflation rate if our objective is to protect of our savings value from being eroded in times of high inflation.

In the long term, however, we expect interest rates to moderate to about 2% to 3%, hence we would target to obtain about 7% to 8% in gross returns.

The financial instrument to achieve this would be unit trusts of different asset classes.

We would usually invest with about four to five different fund managers as well as varying asset classes as a form of risk diversification.

Despite the volatile market situation, it is possible to achieve notable returns in these investments provided we invest for the long term, generally more than five years.

It is also important to review our investment portfolio every six months and restructure according to the market’s performance.

Depending on one’s life stage, it would be necessary to plan for expenses as well as insurance before investing.

It is also crucial to have a timeframe in mind when investing.

For example, if we are planning for our retirement in 20 years’ time, we would target higher returns at the beginning by investing in riskier asset classes.

We would then gradually move to less riskier forms of asset classes as we near our retirement.

By The Star (by StarBizWeek)

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