Do you have business interests as a category in your investment portfolio?

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Yesterday I was listening to a radio show where two young people were talking about starting your own business. The one person was the radio jock, and the other was someone who knew about small businesses.

This is a good thing. That young people are discussing business formation. One would think with the economy in a recession for more than a decade, young people would gravitate towards starting something of their own.

Look, starting your own business is not easy. I’ve tried several. Some have been okay, but others took a turn for the worse. I’m talking over a period of three decades.

So the more information prospective business start-up owners have, the better.

I was going through some old files, and I see that one of the investment advisors I used many years ago said that you should have three things in your investment portfolio:

Business interests
Investment policies

This is quite interesting because you hear none of this advice these days. Property is dead in most of this country, except in the Western Cape. However, property can bring in rental income.

Investment advisors don’t talk about business interests and business formation. I suppose it’s not their job. All they are interested in is investment policies so that they can get a nice percentage off it every month. They get the same percentage whether the market is up or down. From bottom feeders they have become lucrative businesses.

Near where I live, there is a tertiary college where about three years ago the large car park was filled with luxury vehicles. I don’t know if these were parents’ vehicles or whether the parents had bought these vehicles for their children. Anyway, nowadays the cars have shrunk in size although many of them are still brand-new.

But my point is: how many of these young people will get jobs in this economy? I can say that there will be a large percentage of people who have guaranteed jobs in big corporations. But we won’t go into who they are, will we? For the rest, some might pick up some menial position at a small business and work their way up year by year. Others will be faced with doing their own thing, meaning starting something of their own.

Running your own small business was looked down upon years ago. But the race in life is not one by the hare but by the tortoise. Many of those people who went into creating their own small business or buying them from existing business owners are still successfully running them way past their 60s.

So don’t tell me that having business interests is not important to your investment portfolio for your future. investment. Of course it is.

Best of luck to those who are starting their own businesses in these times and with all the regulations and spiteful laws against minorities that strangle businesses.

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