Nearly half of British Columbians are anxious about investing, but education is within reach
Investing is a great tool to build financial well-being, but jargon, numbers and potential frauds leave many British Columbians nervous to start. A recent study by the B.C. Securities Commission (BCSC) finds that nearly one-in-two B.C. residents are nervous about investing.
One key to building confidence is having the right resources. One-in-five investors said a basic understanding of investment principles would relieve some stress on the topic of investing, a 2018 survey by the BCSC found.
Where does the anxiety come from? “Some people are just worried about getting things wrong,” says Pamela McDonald, director of communications and education with the BCSC. “People want to make sure if they’re going to invest, that they do it right. So, the thought of doing it wrong makes people anxious, and they avoid it completely.”
McDonald also cites anxious personality types and discomfort with numbers and math as other reasons for the nervousness around investing.
“We have a dual mandate as the securities regulator for B.C.,” says McDonald. “One mandate is to foster a dynamic and competitive investment market. The other mandate is protecting investors. One important way we do that is by educating people to be confident and empowered investors.”
The BCSC provides many resources for people to learn how to invest their money. For example, the BCSC’s InvestRight.org website features free and unbiased tools and resources.
Specifically, Get Started with Investing is a series of short videos that help first-time investors take their initial steps.
The website also has advice on how to research an investment. Research allows investors to understand an investment product for themselves instead of relying on an online forum or social media for investment decisions.