Why At Times Being Reasonably Greedy Is Good For Your Wealth
One of the best aspects of being a financial planner is the fact that you get to meet and interact with clients and understand their philosophy and outlook towards life, money and wealth.
At least 60% of PersonalFN' WPS (Wealth Planning Service)clients are in the late 50s to early 70s age group and their philosophy towards their wealth is simple - "The money should work hard for them, they don't want to invest in risky asset classes and a return of 8-9% on the portfolio would be enough." These clients are no longer greedy and just want sustainability of wealth.
Assuming that this philosophy resonated across all our WPS clients, I was in for a surprise (and shock), when I and my colleague, met our most loyal WPS client, Mr Bharucha (name changed).
Mr Bharucha (73), a retired private sector employee, was unlike any other WPS clients. Mr. Bharucha has been with PersonalFN, for the last 15 years. He has seen advisors come and go, has witnessed the stock market massacre of 2008 and the euphoria of 2014-15.
As we sat down to discuss his portfolio over a cup of tea, Mr Bharucha remarked, 'you know Deepika, I have been investing in the markets for the last 25 years. That's how long you have been alive", and we all burst out laughing.
It was true. Mr Bharucha was one of a kind. I still remember his opening statement to me, 'Deepika, I'm greedy. I don't want a return of 6-7%, I don't lose sleep over a small negative return. I have seen my portfolio incur a notional loss of almost 60% in 2008-2009, and I have seen an XIRR of 35-40% in 2014-15. All the ups and downs don't bother me, I'm in this for a long haul. Remember, I'm greedy. My age might indicate otherwise, but I want to be greedy and grow my wealth manifolds'.
I nodded my head in agreement. I was shocked to be honest. All through our lives, we are taught not to be greedy and to be content in what we have, but here was Mr Bharucha. Discontent and greedy at 73. And, there is a difference between being an opportunist and being greedy.
Prior to the meeting, I had studied Mr Bharucha's equity mutual fund portfolio in detail and had circled out his evolution from a meagre investment of Rs 1,000/month investment in 1994 to his current Rs 11 Crore portfolio.
Table 1: The journey from Rs 1,000 to Rs 11 Crore
|Year||Monthly Investment||Yearly growth|
Indian equities fared in the respective years.
As you can see from the above table, even though he incurred a loss of -30% per annum on his portfolio in 2008-2009, he did not stop his monthly investments. He actually increased it by 45% in 2008-2009.
As if reading my mind, Mr Bharucha said, 'We are taught that contentment is the key. I disagree. Do you think Warren Buffett, or Jeff Bezos or Mukesh Ambani are content? They are greedy. And while I don't own multi-million dollar businesses, I don't see why we can't replicate their money ideals into our portfolio.'
'Warren Buffett, first created abundant wealth and now actively donates it, that's what I want to do as well. So, my investment objective is "to be greedy"', he remarked with a chuckle.
Warren Buffett would be proud of Mr Bharucha, he was greedy when others were fearful.
Continuing the portfolio discussion, I was impressed with the amount of knowledge Mr Bharucha possessed regarding the markets. He religiously read all the mutual fund news and magazines and often shared interesting titbits with his advisors.
'I believe in spreading knowledge. You see, with the onset of Robo advisors, the new millennial thinks that they can replace a human connection with a computer. They are wrong.'
When I pay your advisory fees, I pay for the human connection. I pay for a discussion of minds and ideas regarding growing wealth. I pay because you question my approach to wealth and I question your recommendations and the ensuing debate regarding the recommendations and the final outcome, gives me the required faith in making decisions when it comes to my wealth.'
'It's all a game of faith, Deepika. You either have faith in a company and its representatives, or you don't. There is no grey area when it comes to faith. I have full faith in your company's capabilities in managing my portfolio and making sure I stay reasonably greedy. I have full faith in your philosophy with money. You see, unlike me, you guys aren't greedy, he remarked and smiled coyly.
As the meeting came to a conclusion, Mr Bharucha remarked, 'I have referred PersonalFN to guys in many of my circles, but the fact is that my friends don't understand the concept of value advice. They often ask me what the portfolio churning ratio is and when I answer that the recommendations don't change often, they question the need of a wealth manager.'
I retort, 'you won't fire the pilot if he successfully manoeuvres the tough skies, and ensures a safe landing right? You would say, job well done. Similarly, the job of a wealth manager is not to churn the portfolio unnecessarily and fill his own pockets, his job is to manoeuvre the tough market conditions and help your portfolio reach its destination.'
Now your job is to grow this Rs 11 crore into 110 crore in the next 10 years! , he exclaimed.
After coming back to the office, I decided to be a bit greedy myself and realised that if I saved Rs 10,000 per month and increased it by 10% every year, I would create a bigger corpus that Mr Bharucha.
Table 2: The journey from Rs 10,000 to Rs 13 Crore
|Age||Year||Monthly Investment||Yearly growth|
I still remember his concluding words, 'Never say that you have enough money. When you are standing on a slope, the only way to not come down is to continue moving up, however slow the uphill journey might be, the key is to continue moving up.'
Like, Mr Bharucha, I'm going to continue moving up, however slow. As I said in the beginning of the article, the best aspect of being a financial planner is, you get to meet really great people who can alter your attitude towards money and the way you look at wealth.
With the help of clients such as Mr. Bharucha, over the last 18 years, we have amassed expertise in managing wealth and philosophy of wealth. Like Mr. Bharucha, you too can start with a minimal investment amount and create your fortune. And we can help you in your wealth creation journey, by manoeuvring through the dark skies and ensuring you reach your destination.
Connect with PersonalFN's Certified Financial Planners and Wealth Managers on 022-61361200 or write to email@example.com. You may also fill in this form, and soon our experienced financial planners will reach out to you.
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Till then, Happy Investing!
Author: Deepika Khude
This article first appeared on PersonalFN here
PersonalFN is a Mumbai based personal finance firm offering Financial Planning and Mutual Fund Research services.