Optimism of a different kind

To give up the desire to learn is to give up hope in the future.
People's hunger to learn, and eagerness to invest wisely was clearly visible at this year's MoneyExpo, the writer says. Picture: Shutterstock

Many of us newshounds, whether we are purveyors or consumers of news, are feeling a little jaded at the moment. The country is facing a political and economic crisis second to none and confidence in the future is low – though perhaps not as low as it was in the late 1980’s (isn’t that a ghastly comparison).

But recently I had the pleasure of witnessing optimism. It was the type of optimism where people are willing to invest in their future because they believe it can be good. I saw people – both young and old, black and white, established and less established – with a hunger to learn, an eagerness to invest wisely and the patience to listen to others with more experience talk about what can be a very jargon-filled industry.

The event was Moneyweb’s recent MoneyExpo held at the Sandton Convention Centre and some 4 000 people passed through the doors over a Friday and Saturday. Imagine: they were there by 9am on a Saturday morning to listen to the likes of DJ Euphonik on his road from DJ to property guru and the Simon Brown/Kristia van Heerden duo on how to structure your salary cheque. Other speakers carried the baton until well after lunch that day.

There is a thirst for education in South Africa, which remains largely untapped. So it is with some regret that I am telling you that this is the last issue (in this form) of the Moneyweb Investor. We set out 27 issues ago to bring you a product that would provide informative and entertaining articles on the investment world around us.

To some extent I think we have done this. I was clicking through back issues and was drawn in by stories that appear timeless: Should investors follow a rights offer? Have asset managers been absent landlords? In this article we warned about forex and sharetrading education and software rip-offs. In April last year we asked whether tech stocks were flying too high? The conclusion was no – and look how they have flown!

Coming closer to home we identified ten stocks to buy for ten year olds; we provided you with tools to read results like an analyst and tackled the world of Bitcoin with this definitive guide.

Investing is not all about numbers, it’s about people and we have interviewed our fill of interesting characters. We spoke to rising IT leader Sbu Shabalala; Amazon CTO Werner Vogels; and Sizwe Nxasana on a proposed solution to the student funding crisis. We bid farewell to retail legend Whitey Basson; celebrated the unconventional Masimo Magerman; and introduced you to twitterer and technical share trader Karin Richards. Not to disappoint, this month we talk to ETF guru and financial wizard Nerina Visser.

Change does not mean that you, our loyal reader loses out. We will continue to cover the world of finance and investing on Moneyweb itself and we will, on a weekly basis, inform investors of the best investment related content on Moneyweb.

Also in the wings is a section that caters to the financial advisor community.

As you can see, at Moneyweb we do not sit still.

Please consider contributing as little as R20 in appreciation of our quality independent financial journalism.

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