- Date : 05/08/2022
- Read: 4 mins
A novel method to start investing with small Change on a regular basis. This helps build the habit of regular investment and gives good returns. Let's understand more about change investing.
In today's world, we all want to save or invest money on a regular basis to achieve our personal aspirations and goals. As earners, young and old, we often hope to park our funds with high potential finance bodies that yield good returns and offer great flexibility. But more often than not, one finds it difficult to allocate regular funds for investing. Increasing expenses, inflation, and maintaining a comfortable lifestyle consumes most of the income. So, how about not looking at investing large amounts and instead of starting it small? What if you are able to make small investments with every purchase or transaction?
The solution is 'Change Investing,' an ingenious new-age method that allows people to make micro-investments. As most youngsters find managing money quite challenging, change investing is rather simple and an easily accessible mode of investing. Above all, it encourages people to develop a habit of regular investing and gain interest in better money management. Yes, it is a lot like a piggy bank, where you can save money bit by bit, but instead of Mr. Piggy, you use a mobile app. These automated micro-investment apps help you save a small amount of money every time you buy food, go to the movies, eat at a restaurant, basically every time you make a transaction. This type of investment allows the user to buy small fractions of assets on these apps.
So, how does Change Investing work?
Our day-to-day transaction values don't usually round off to the nearest '00s; for example, if your bill value is Rs. 485, the app rounds it off to Rs.500 and prods you to invest the differential amount of Rs.15 in a financial asset available on its platform. The user has to just select the nearest round-off amount and enable auto-debit on the app. The platform will invest the change amount, irrespective of how small the amount is. This not only helps in making faster savings but is also easy to track and use! It is especially a good start for millennials and younger generations who feel they don't have sufficient funds to start investing in stock markets.
Furthermore, this change amount keeps accumulating as, and when the user spends, and after it crosses an amount of Rs 100, it will automatically be invested in a mutual fund selected by the user earlier. This plan can be applied to all types of spending or transactions, whether it is an in-store transaction, online shopping, UPI transaction, or even any mode of fund transfer. The best part is that there are no obligations of any sort, and users can withdraw their savings at any point in time and benefit from higher returns than their regular savings accounts. It is absolutely the easiest way for young earners to start their investments.
While this concept is still new and cannot be used as a long-term savings strategy, it definitely promotes individuals' interest in investing in various financial assets and the urge to understand them. The process is quite intuitive, non-committal, and effortless, as one can continue spending like always while simultaneously saving away small amounts of money regularly. In India, apps like JAR and NIYO are popular that provide such kinds of investment services.
While there are pros, let's see what the cons are;
As of today, these avenues of investment are still very limited; with time, they may or may not expand. Most micro-investment apps only provide investments in a single type of asset class; hence not many options for diversification unless the user decides to switch to another investment platform.
No matter how many transactions one makes in a month, the investment amount is very little eventually and does not help achieve any personal investing goals. And if the user does invest large amounts on these apps, the fees charged would be much higher, which would mean very negligible earnings. So essentially, these apps are only suitable for smaller amounts.
So far, the regular users of Change Investing platforms believe that it is an excellent way to start their savings. They feel that because of this mode of investing, as and when their savings grow, they will be encouraged to make more serious investments in the future.