Young adults seek investment opportunities as stock market lurches

Investor reaction to market volatility depends on their age

Photo by Adam Nowakowski on Unsplash
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By Max Leckie

As fears rise over the effect of COVID-19 on the economy, one computer science student says there may be an opportunity for investors.

Devon Nelson is a first-year computer science student at Langara. He has been actively managing his investments for about a year, and said he’s seen a decline in his portfolio from the pandemic, but is looking forward to the opportunity to buy.

“It’s like a negative if you didn’t sell on time, but now because stocks are so cheap, it’s a great time to buy,” Nelson said.

The Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX) took a steep dive at the end of February as reactions to the COVID-19 pandemic slowed trade worldwide. On Feb.20, it closed on a high of 17,944.06 points and has fallen to 11,651.63 points as of March 23.

According to Brenda St. Louis, an independent financial therapist and money coach, the financial loss some people suffered can put them in a state of grief and anxiety, especially as they approach retirement.

“People that are [in their] late 40s, 50s, 60s, they’re actually becoming more serious about their portfolio [because] they’re going to be depending on it soon. That’s when they get really frightened,” said St Louis. “Some people go into shock, or guilt or they kind of are feeling regret like they’ve done something wrong.”

Tom Lensink, a North Delta resident and a semi-retired Telus employee, said he’s seen a definite dip in his RRSPs and TFSA, and that he’s worried that we haven’t seen the bottom yet.

“I’m just waiting to see where the bottom is. I mean, I’m not going to sell anything anyway,” said Lensink. “It’s just a matter of how low it goes and how hard a hit my portfolio takes and then hopefully we hit a bottom and start crawling out of it.”

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