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I currently have $157,000 in my bank account, what’s the best way to invest and grow it?

I often write on Quora.com, where I am the most viewed writer on financial matters, with over 337.6 million views in recent years.

In the answers below I focused on the following topics and issues:

  • If you currently have over 150k in your bank account, what is the best way to invest it, given 0% interest rates across much of the globe?
  • Many people retire poor. How can this be avoided?

If you want me to answer any questions on Quora or YouTube, or you are looking to invest, don’t hesitate to contact me, email (advice@adamfayed.com) or use the WhatsApp function below.

Source for all answers – Adam Fayed’s Quora page.

I currently have $157,000 in my bank account, what’s the best way to invest and grow it?

The growth below shows the growth of $1 over time in different asset classes, the volatility, and the average annual rate of return:

main qimg 902d9b70d8db4d3023832156a687cf42 lq

Even adjusted for inflation, we can see that:

  • Stocks beat bonds long-term but are more volatile – there are numerous crashes that come and go.
  • Small caps outperform long-term but can be more volatile than the entire stock market
  • There are numerous time periods where bonds, and even cash, beat stocks.
  • Some asset classes struggled to keep pace with inflation. The shortest term bonds are one such example
  • Stocks can do much better, or much worse, than expected during certain time periods. Few expected stocks to bounce back from Covid so quickly, or have a great run since 2008. By the same token, few people saw the crashes coming.
  • It now makes sense why you might know some “everyday millionaires” who bought stocks decades ago and got wealthy from relatively modest investments. The guy below had $8million when he died…..as a cleaner. You might assume that he is a one-off, but the statistics show there are more people like him than you might believe:
main qimg 7d38ab352c839d926b467a3cf34d587c lq

Of course, things have changed in recent years. Bonds no longer pay what they once did.

Cash pays zero in most countries, so you can no longer beat inflation with bank deposits.

The difference between stock and bonds returns since 2008 has been huge for this reason.

“Playing it safe” with cash in the bank was never really safe, due to inflation and currency risks. Now it makes even less sense than ever.

Of course, the specific answer to your question depends on several personal factors such as:

  • How old you are
  • How much risk do you want to take
  • How likely you are to panic if the markets fall. If you are likely to panic sell after a 30% or 50% fall, then a more diversified (and less volatile portfolio) makes more sense
  • Do you have access to advice, and some of the more sophisticated investments this can bring. Things like downside protection, private equity, and much else can make sense, but usually not for the majority of retail clients. Those kinds of things get more important once people are wealthier and/or they have access to advice.
  • Your individual financial planning situation, such as how stable your income is, and many other things.

The point is merely that you should invest for the long-term, in a sensible portfolio, which is weighted towards the markets but has access to other assets.

Investing has changed over the years, but the more it changes, the more it stays the same in some ways.

95% of people retire broke. What is your plan?

main qimg 7159e82d27909c3a7b4bcb43d76b1e6f

The statistics above are shocking and are replicated across much of the world, even if 95% is on the high side.

I am doing exactly what I advocate others to do:

  • Invest now and don’t time the markets. Focus on time in the market to compound the growth
  • Put as much money aside as possible, as young as possible, to avoid the situation you speak about, without taking frugality to the extreme where it affects quality of life. “Fixing the roof when the sun is shining”.

The other options that exist are

  • Never retire as one or two people said below. However, that is high-risk. It is easy to wake up at 60, and be full of energy, and assume you can do another twenty years. It is possible for a minority of people, yet your health could go any way.
  • Rely on government provisions. Again though, this is risky because they will keep pushing back the retirement age.
  • Another high-risk strategy is relying on others like adult kids.
  • Try to set up passive income streams of revenue in addition to any private provisions. For example, if you have a business and can work on outscoring it to such an extent where it can exist without much of your involvement. There are some business owners who spend 0–5 hours a week on their business, and they have delegated the day-to-day running to somebody else.
  • The point above isn’t just for big business owners. These days, on the internet, there are plenty of older people who set up these streams of income via various techniques. In other words, they build up a second stream of income slowly and eventually automate it.

Basically, there are only so many things we can control. Not putting all your eggs in one basket is one of them.

It is a tried and tested strategy, just as compounding is. Ultimately, people don’t need to invest much to retire well…….IF they start early and don’t save the money and instead put it to work in productive assets.

The sums get more difficult once you are closer to retirement and then need to make difficult decisions.

Pained by financial indecision? Want to invest with Adam?

Financial Planner - Adam Fayed

Adam is an internationally recognised author on financial matters, with over 735.2 million answer views on Quora.com, a widely sold book on Amazon, and a contributor on Forbes.

Further Reading

In the answers below, taken from my online Quora answers, I spoke about the following issues and questions:

  • What are ways investors reduce risk?
  • Are we heading for a repeat of the 2018 stock market selloff? 
  • What are the best places for expats to live?
  • What are five alternatives to cash for your money?

To read more, click on the link below:

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