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Investment or speculation (Investor Mail #2)

おはよう (Ohayō) contributor to the kingdom! こんにちは (Kon'nichiwa) reformer! I salute you in the precious name of the LORD JESUS CHRIST. Be visionary (forward-thinking), see far, and go far. Cultivate resilience. Remember that not every expert is a good teacher, not every investor is an entrepreneur, and not every manager is a leader.

"It is [almost] worthless, it is [almost] worthless,” says the buyer [as he negotiates the price]; But when he goes his way, then he boasts [about his bargain]". ( Proverbs 20:14, AMP)

" He who observes the wind will not sow, And he who regards the clouds will not reap. As you do not know what is the way of the wind, Or how the bones grow in the womb of her who is with child, So you do not know the works of GOD who makes everything. In the morning sow your seed, And in the evening do not withhold your hand; For you do not know which will prosper, Either this or that, Or whether both alike will be good." (Ecclesiastes 11: 4-6, NKJV)

An investment is an expense intended to preserve, protect, or increase the skills, abilities, wealth, or assets of the person incurring the expense, or of the person for whom the expense is incurred. Assets can be real, movable, or immaterial (intangible goods, memory, know-how, skills, knowledge, etc.). Investing means preparing for tomorrow or preparing ourselves for tomorrow.

To save is to set aside for later. We don't save to enrich the banks. We save to face the unexpected, to get through lean seasons with peace of mind, and to invest. By investing, I mean investing in ourselves, in the Kingdom, for our families, for financial, entrepreneurial, social, and family projects, and so on. Investment ideas and opportunities exist for every purse, for every project, and for every profile. Some invest for the short term, others for the long. Short-term investing aims to generate cash quickly. Long-term investment aims to capitalize and secure.

We speak of appreciation (valorization) if the object of the investment has increased in value over time. We speak of return (financial performance) if the investment generates regular income (e.g. rent) or regular payments (e.g. from customers). Return on investment (ROI) is an indicator for measuring and comparing the return on an investment. The general formula is: [(gains or returns - investment costs) / investment costs]. The payback time is the time required to recover the initial cost of the investment (i.e., return on investment equal to zero).

In finance, speculation is the activity of anticipating a gain by choosing a short- or medium-term price trend hypothesis for currencies or goods (financial assets, real estate, commodities). The speculator takes advantage of price fluctuations to make a profit. His vision is short-term. Sometimes medium-term (in the agricultural, food and real estate sectors). There are two types of speculation: upward and downward (short selling). Speculating on the upside means buying on the assumption that prices will rise rapidly, and then selling for a gain. To speculate on the downside is to sell at a high price (the market price), with deferred delivery, a good or security you don't yet own, on the assumption that its current price will fall, and then to buy it and deliver it, pocketing a substantial gain. The speculator anticipates a hypothesis that may not come true. His gain compensates for the risk.

Example of downward speculation or short selling:

Today the price of a ton of rice is 1000 euros. But I assume that in 3 days, it will be 500 euros. I propose to sell a tonne of rice today at 1000 euros, promising the buyer delivery in a week's time. In the meantime, I borrowed 500 euros from my bank (the overdraft) while waiting for the price of the ton to fall, so that I could buy it and deliver it to my client. If my speculation comes to pass, I'll pocket a gain of 450 euros, corresponding to the 500 euros gain deducted from 50 euros in bank interest and commission. If, on the other hand, my speculation doesn't come to fruition and the price of a tonne of rice is constant, my loss will be 100 euros (interest and bank commission). If, on the other hand, the price of a tonne of rice rises by 200 euros, my loss will be 320 euros. 320 euros is a minimum. The amount of the loss could increase and even double depending on the conditions of the sale and loan (delivery time, late payment, exchange rate fluctuation, loan rate variability, product quality, import quotas, customs regulations, etc.).

Speculators are as celebrated by some as they are denigrated and hated by others. Most financial crises are indeed due to speculative bubbles (mimetic behavior) and the interdependence of banks (insolvency, bank failures, lack of regulation). But these are not the only reasons. Some financial crises are caused by geopolitical crises, armed conflicts, pandemics, and natural disasters. It is also true that, despite price rises, speculation on commodity prices enriches speculators at the expense of producers.

Nevertheless, it would be wrong to believe that speculation is simply a game of chance. Speculators analyze prices, the market, statistics, price history, public announcements, debt ratios, and, if need be, geopolitics, etc. Speculators are on the lookout for anything that might, rightly or wrongly, justify a price change. They're on the lookout for anything that might, rightly or wrongly, justify a price change. Some are experts in fraudulent accounting and financial strategy.

Speculation isn't just for professionals, and the image conveyed in films is only part of the iceberg. There are beautiful stories and long nightmares. In investment too, there are beautiful dreams, beautiful stories, and long nightmares. Unquestionably, I prefer investors to speculators. That said, every investment involves risk. So there's an element of speculation, however small, in any investment. That's why the larger the investment is, the more a risk management strategy is needed: identify, evaluate, prioritize, and monitor to decide and act more effectively to reduce the risk, or its possible impact.

The speculator is betting to make the maximum profit in the minimum time, with a very high level of risk. This is clearly not what the Bible encourages. The Bible encourages us to maximize our potential, make good use of our resources, and value weak beginnings. In other words, the Bible encourages us to progress, grow, learn, to do well, in the right way, for the right reasons, and with the right people. Of course, at the right time and in the right place.

My advice: don't buy financial stocks thinking they'll be worth a million in ten days or ten billion in a year. If one day that happens, glory be to GOD! Look first for progressive gains, not exponential gains. Don't be obsessed by the possibility of winning, be sober. If you're a beginner, don't expect to perform like an expert. What is born must grow, then strengthen, bear good fruit, and multiply.

GOD bless you.

** おはよう (Ohayō) = Good morning in Japanese

** こんにちは (Kon’nichiwa) = Good morning (good today) in Japanese


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