The Securities and Exchange Commission of Zimbabwe (SECZ) recently hosted the third episode of the “Women in Capital Markets” webinar series. The webinar, which was titled “How to invest: Practical Steps to take” covered the basics of how to start investing on Zimbabwe’s Capital Markets.
Sunday Mail Editor, Victoria Ruzvidzo, moderated the discussion with SECZ Head of Investor Education, Farai Mpofu co-hosting the event. Panelists were women who are actively involved in the Capital Markets, namely, Rumbidzai Dahwa Chaavure, a Retail Investor; Simbiso Musa, Investment Manager at the National Social Security Authority (NSSA) and Tevian Chauraya, a Senior Equities Dealer at Old Mutual Securities.
Rumbidzai shared her experiences as a retail investor, attributing reading and researching as tools that equipped her to become knowledgeable about investing in the Capital Markets. Despite having no prior experience or exposure to the Capital Markets, Rumbidzai has over time become an avid and active retail investor on the Capital Markets.
A number of tips were shared on what to look out for when choosing stocks to buy. Rumbidzai said key elements she usually looks at include, the company’s performance over the last few years (ideally going back at least 5 years), whether it has grown in terms of its earnings, the strategy model and how much of it has been implemented, management competence and ethics, analyst comments and the company’s dividend policy. When looking at dividend policy this encompasses, when they last paid dividends to shareholders, how often they pay dividends, and their short and medium plans which determine if they will be paying dividends or reinvesting funds they have.
According to Rumbidzai, “In investing, you get as much as you put in.” An individual is more likely to gain favourable returns if he or she invests more. Rumbidzai shared that her short-term investment yielded tangible benefits that were sufficient for her to acquire a new vehicle. For her long term investments, Rumbidzai highlighted that she sets aside a percentage of her salary for investing and that all dividends are re-invested.
Holding years of experience working as a Senior Equities Dealer, Tevian Chauraya spoke about the tools to start the investing journey. She recommended selecting a licensed broker to explain the different types of investments, as well as:
- The requirements for opening an investment account with a broker, or using platforms such as ZSE Direct and C-Trade;
- The importance of funding one’s account to avoid settlement failure &
- The minimum initial investment of ZWL$500.00.
Tevian encouraged women participating in the Capital Markets to view trading as a journey which they need to see through to the end. The Zimbabwean market and its constant economic shifts mean investors should be patient, agile, and curious to keep abreast of what is happening within the company they have investments in. Being an investor involves trial and error, and one gains experience and confidence over time.
Simbiso Musa shared her insights as an Institutional Investor. As an Investment Manager, she describes herself as risk-averse and mentioned the universal rule to establish short and long term investment goals. With 11 years’ worth of dedication to the Capital Markets, she acknowledges that becoming a successful investor is a skill honed over time.
The panelists discussed the culture of saving among women where they contribute money towards “maround” (savings groups). While this was viewed as commendable, women were encouraged to start investing these savings so that they are both preserved and grow.
The panel agreed on the importance of working to counter the perception that investing is for the rich, those with high disposable income and requires a high IQ. Investment needs learning about the market and determining objectives and time frames. Women were encouraged to start investing with what they have, and stop waiting until they have reached an ambitious financial target at some future date to trade.
The webinar ended on a high note by encouraging more women to participate on the Capital Markets. The “Women in Capital Markets” initiative is set up to give women in Capital Markets a channel to network, collaborate, and support those in the sector including investors and those who may be keen to raise capital for their small businesses. . Look out for more events as part of this series.