I’m confused by investments, get me out of here!

Man burying his head under laptop

Investing

Julie Hutchison

21st February 2014 at 4:11pm

I’ve been thoroughly enjoying the recent sporting events unfolding in Sochi – the drama and the ability of the Olympic athletes has not been lost on me.  However, I must admit some of the associated commentary has.  As I watched, it became quickly apparent I did not know my ‘Goofy’ from my ‘Mctwist’ or my ‘Fakie’ (all actual snowboarding terms) and found myself feeling a little ‘snow blind’ as a result. As I watched, it became quickly apparent I did not know my ‘Goofy’ from my ‘Mctwist’ or my ‘Fakie’ (all actual snowboarding terms) and found myself feeling a little ‘snow blind’ as a result.

Listening to all this hip insider terminology actually reminded me of the some of the clouds of confusion which hang around investments. I’ll be honest with you.  I’ve worked in financial services for almost ten years and I’ve sat through some crushingly dull presentations about investments in that time.  Some of those jargon jammed presentations littered with investment buzzwords left me dazed and disgruntled.  And I say that as someone who has some financial planning and tax exams under my belt.

Lost in translation

Do you care about what the following words and phrases mean?  Equities, bonds, BRIC countries, portfolio, fixed interest, diversification, leveraging, derivatives – no?  Don’t worry.

One step to start with

You can still sort out your investments without being an expert in those things.  Here’s one step to start you off.

If there’s one thing to get a handle on when it comes to investments, it’s your appetite for risk.  What do I mean by that?

Would you be comfortable with the pace of curling, or do you crave the speed of the skeleton bob?  Do you like the reassurance of being with a team, or do you prefer to go solo off piste?

I’m talking about whether you prefer to be cautious or adventurous.

This questionnaire gives you a risk rating at the end, to help you figure out whether you’re cautious or adventurous.

Where next?

Now that you know where you sit on the risk scale, the next step is to see which investments match this.

For an edited selection, have a look at the MyFolio Managed funds – all you have to do is choose the one which most closely matches how you feel about risk. For people who like lots of choice and are comfortable with a DIY approach to investing, we also have a full fund list of over 1,500 funds.But remember, investing doesn’t have to be complicated and it shouldn’t be daunting.  After all, no-one’s asking you to pop a ‘Japan Air’ like they do in Sochi!

I’d always recommend speaking to an expert if you want more advice or guidance.  But remember, investing doesn’t have to be complicated and it shouldn’t be daunting.  After all, no-one’s asking you to pop a ‘Japan Air’ like they do in Sochi!  Start by keeping it simple –the risk questionnaire is a good place to start.

For more financial tips follow us on twitter @StandardLifeUK and Facebook.

You can now subscribe to regular MoneyPlus blog updates too by simply entering your email address in the subscription bar at the top right-hand corner of the site.

Investments can go up and down in value and can be worth less than you paid in.

We use cookies and similar technologies.

By using this website you agree that we may use them to develop and market our services, tailor your online experience and track sales. Read our cookie policy for information and advice on changing your settings.

Close