NORFOLK, Va. - It's 2021, and your resolution list may already include focusing on your health or doing something you've never done before. However, financial analyst Dominick Miserandino suggested people may want to consider adding financial goals to that list.
"Too often I'll speak to people and they don't have that clear, so I think number one, get that clear picture,” Miserandino said, citing how 2020 has hit people’s finances because of the coronavirus pandemic. “I've actually had quite a few more people approach me for financial guidance this year because I think it's on the forefront of everyone's minds."
You may be interested in investing in stocks or other financial vehicles, but Miserandino suggested getting your immediate finances in check.
"Look at what you need, look where you need to get by month-to-month,” Miserandino explained, “whether it be with debts or living expenses, rent and food."
You might have already checked that off and now want to trade and dive into the stock market. Before you buy that stock, Miserandino said he suggests people invest in index funds.
“You can get a fund for the Dow Jones and let the index do the hard work for you,” he said. “They're choosing the stocks that make up the Dow Jones or the S&P."
He cautions that you may not get rich overnight after performing investments. That is because the wealth these financial vehicles build take time. Stocks can also lose value and are not insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, an agency that insures monetary deposits people make at institutions such as banks.
"You reap the rewards 10, 20 years from now, and that's the tough part of saving,” Miserandino said. “That kind of stuff will yield results over time and in the long haul."
Also, don't worry if you've never invested before or think it's hard to understand.
"There's so many resources online that you can take it one step at a time,” Miserandino said.
There are mobile investing apps like Acorns and Robinhood that allow interested investors to start small with little to nothing.
If along the way you need help, Miserandino suggested turning to a financial adviser or someone you trust with finances.