March 18, 2022 Julie Hyslop

Risks Associated with Online Trading Platforms


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“Everyone is entitled to take risks. However, we advise first-time investors to focus on long-term goals and not make rash decisions based on a fear of missing out on market falls or gains. We also recommend learning about trading before you start or getting advice from someone you trust.”
Quote: Greg Yanco, Executive Director, Markets at ASIC

The Australian Securities and Investment Commission is concerned about the number of investors using online trader platforms who are unaware of their risk exposure. While it can be seen as a positive development that more people are taking an interest in the markets, it is important the inherent volatility and complexities of the market are fully understood before handing over money to trading platforms, especially first-time investors.

At Income Solutions, we believe that the recommendation made by ASIC Executive Director Greg Yanco, that people learn and educate themselves in understanding the share market, together with getting financial information from a trusted advisor has the potential to not only save you money but increase your investment portfolio into the future. To demonstrate this point, at Income Solutions when working in partnership with our clients to develop a financial plan, one of the important financial strategies that we ensure they understand is the difference between Speculation and Investing https://www.incomesolutions.com.au/the-difference-between-investment-and-speculation/ as research shows that applying this financial strategy potentially increases long term financial outcomes.

There is currently a lot of misinformation around trading strategies online that are the result of online scams and unlicensed advice, or the product of social media campaigns where trading companies are sometimes paying for favorable comments on forums such as Reddit or Facebook. For these reasons financial advice and education needs to be supplied by licensed and credentialed financial advisors who are regulated through ASIC and meet stringent compliance obligations and requirements.
While online trading may be a relatively new financial option, the Aesop’s fable written in the mid-6th century comes to mind of the ‘The Ant and the Grasshopper’ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_svBrlehmMo
The ants demonstrating that a consistent and considered approach to planning for winter (or your financial future) brings about the best results rather than the ad hoc approach of the grasshopper who wanted quick outcomes without a lot of planning or effort.

While an online trading platform may be a convenient and quick vehicle for people to ‘have a crack’ at owning shares, it is worth considering whether this approach is what is needed when planning and investing in your financial future. While it may take a little longer developing a financial strategy and plan and stopping to seek compliant and trusted financial advice the outcomes in the long term may well prove to be worth it.

Referenced for this article:

https://asic.gov.au/about-asic/news-centre/news-items/first-time-trader-be-aware-of-the-risks/

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