Investors interviewed are CommSec customers that have agreed to share their personal investing experiences. The statements made throughout are the views of the investor’s and are not professional or financial advice. They are not the views of, or financial advice being provided by, CommSec. They receive payment from Commonwealth Securities Limited (CommSec) for their participation.

Where Emer invests

Born and raised in country NSW, Emer knows first-hand how hard it can be to get a good financial education when you live remotely. “Kids [in regional communities] are often just less exposed to those learning opportunities compared to people in the city,” she explains. Yet the 20-year-old considers herself one of the lucky ones: she credits one very engaged economics teacher for her early start on her investing journey.

Name: Emer

Age: 20

Location: Sydney

Occupation: Student, part-time nanny

CommSec product: CommSec Share Trading

Favourite feature: Watchlist – I create a new one every month to see what’s trending

Portfolio size: $2,500

Passionate about: Equal opportunities and financial education for all, especially those living in remote communities

When did you start investing?

On my eighteenth birthday. I grew up in a small country town seven hours from Sydney. No one in my family was into investing, but I had an economics teacher in school who tried to educate us about stuff like this. So when I turned 18, I showed him what I wanted to invest in and he helped me with some research.


What are you investing for?

I’m investing for financial stability to help set myself up for the future. So, my aim is to build a more diversified portfolio.


Describe your approach to investing?

I’d say I’m pretty cautious. I like the blue-chip stocks, and I like doing a lot of research. I’m not day-trading and I don’t make any abrupt moves because I’m in it for the long haul. I’m looking for shares I hope to still have in 40-50 years' time.


What’s in your portfolio?

Among others, I’ve got Webjet shares, which I bought in the middle of COVID. In hindsight, that turned out to be a pretty good move. There’s also New Energy Solar, which is aligned with my values and the future path I see for energy in Australia.


What stocks are you watching and why?

One of the stocks I’m watching really closely is Baby Bunting because so many babies have been born during COVID. Someone at uni mentioned it, so I thought it’d be a good idea to keep an eye on that. I’ve been trying to look into how the market has been affected by COVID-19 and see what’s going to be important to people in the future.


Biggest investing win?

Probably having my first dividend paid in my account after the first year. It wasn’t a huge amount – only around $80 – but I was like, oh my god – this is actually happening. That was the moment when it started feeling real, like things are really starting to come together.


Biggest investing loss?

I guess there’s a little bit of regret missing out on the high-flying shares, which went up during COVID-19. I was just very cautious, but I’m glad I took a bit of a leap and invested in Webjet at the time. It paid off!


What makes you feel confident?

I feel confident when I do my research and run my thoughts past other people. I like to educate myself and be as informed as possible. I can go a little crazy (laughs). For example, I’ll stay up for hours and watch all the videos that CommSec has on YouTube. But that’s how I end up feeling the most comfortable with my investment decisions.


What worries you?

I think buying cryptocurrency would worry me because I don’t feel like it’s super stable and I don’t know how to gauge its worth. But then again, I worry that I’m missing out on this huge thing that could forever change currency as we know it. So, I guess the future is something I’m a little concerned about.


What advice would you give to someone just starting out?

Well, I got my sister onto the CommSec app because I thought that was really good. The videos especially because you can watch as little or as much as you want. My advice to her was to make sure you understand all the materials, so you can be confident in your choices. If it’s just a half-hearted decision, then you might not even know where your money ends up.


Why do you invest with CommSec?

A lot of people my age actually use CommSec and I really wanted to buy ASX shares. None of the international ones really appealed to me. Plus, it had one of the lowest trading rates at the time and it’s just so easy to access via the app.


TIL (today I learned)?

… how important it is to trust your gut.


The little win you want to celebrate this week?

How well my stocks are going at the moment (laughs).

That’s how Emer does it. Head here for tips on how to find a way to invest that works for you.

Where Ellis invests

Electrical engineer Ellis likes to look beneath the surface both at work and when he invests – a strategy he’s found successful to date. Learn why.

Where Hayley invests

For Sydney Chocolatier Hayley, investing is a constant learning experience. Still, she’s in it for the long haul – and she’s confident time is on her side.

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