SINGAPORE: In a time when many viewed investment as a key to financial success, one man took a different stance and shared their perspective online.

“Unpopular opinion: To all young people, its more worth to spend your time honing skills to increase your salary, than to spend time learning how to invest,” the man wrote on r/singaporefi on Friday (April 5). “Yes, best case scenario is to do both at the same time. But if you were to choose one, choose increasing salary,” he added.

He explained that if a young individual only plans to set aside a small amount, such as S$100 per month (S$1,200 per year), for his investments, it would be better for him to allocate it to books or courses from reputable sources (not from YouTube gurus).

“Skills that will pay you are way more crucial in early stages,” he said.

“I agree that spending time honing skills to increase salary is more important”

Most Singaporean Redditors agreed with the man’s opinion and said that skills hold greater value than investment knowledge. One individual said, “Yup. Higher salary is just better..heck you don’t even need to invest.

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If salary is 4k now, you can either upgrade/job hop and get 4.5k – 5k . That $500 – $1000 increase EVERY MONTH is something that you can’t get from investing unless you already have a huge sum getting interest or you day trade and that is another topic .”

While another commented, “I agree that spending time honing skills to increase salary is more important. Investment may get you 3-8% returns per year on the average, it fluctuates and you may make a loss.

Increasing one’s skills makes your salary grow exponentially. You are your greatest asset.”

On the other hand, some Redditors offered a contrasting view, suggesting that basic investment principles can be quickly grasped (even as briefly as a single day) without impeding skill development.

They recommended focusing on straightforward investment strategies like saving and investing in index funds for long-term growth.

One individual added, “Disagree. If you only start [investing] when you reached an income and saving that’s substantial, it’s too late.

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It happened to me, started only when my finances are better. If I knew about investment earlier, my portfolio would be more than doubled/tripled. Also, I’ll be more motivated to save more and get more income.”

Others also argued that the man’s advice is primarily tailored for individuals in the early stages of their careers, typically within their first and second years of employment.

However, for those with a longer work history or who have reached their 30s, investment should be their top priority.

This is because, at that point in their lives, they have most likely accumulated a significant amount of capital that can be invested, and they have also set aside savings as a financial safety net in case of unforeseen circumstances.

One individual stated, “A friend of mine told me this. Before 30, Invest all income to yourself. After 30, invest in market.”

Read also: 31-year-old man feels devastated after losing life savings to bad “investments”

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