Our latest Investor Profile features Carla Fasher, a 29-year-old optometrist who got into investing as a student while working at a bank.
At first glance, Carla seems like a quintessential optometrist having graduated in optometry and now working at a busy clinic. But before her career in healthcare, she worked at a bank during her early 20s which sparked her interest in finance and kick-started her investing journey.
As a newbie investor, Carla focused on savings and term deposits until she learned more about her own risk profile and built-up her general knowledge of investing. She first dipped her toes into shares through an employee investing scheme at the bank. Once Carla slowly became more confident, she started making her own investments, mainly through exchange traded funds (ETFs).
Almost 10 years on from her first investment, Carla now has a diverse portfolio including KiwiSaver, a managed growth fund, ETFs and individual shares acquired through investment platforms. She’s also held onto those bank shares she acquired from her previous job. All her investments are financed using her savings and reinvesting any dividends.
“I am most interested in ETFs as it allows me to diversify what I am invested in. I prefer to invest in ETFs in different areas rather than individual stocks to reduce risk.”
Carla maintains an active approach watching her money grow over time. She’s a proponent of dollar-cost averaging and makes an automatic investment every fortnight to align with her pay. To further protect herself from risks, Carla invests an amount she is comfortable to store away for the long-term and rides out the ups and downs of the market by sticking to her goals.
Working full time means a busy lifestyle but Carla loves immersing herself in finance and investments and turns to articles from investment platforms and online posts about investing during any spare time she has left.
“Around the time of the pandemic starting and market volatility, the best advice I came across was to not do anything drastic, as you can’t predict what’s going to happen. For me, it’s worked out best to stick with my investment strategy, continue dollar-cost averaging and make the most out of the decrease in prices.”
Carla’s favourite investing motto that guides her investing is: “The hardest thing for an investor is to do nothing – often the best thing is just to stick with the plan.”