Fledgling Investment Academy
Once a month I sit down with my own children and give them £10 to invest via their Junior Stocks & Shares ISA.
They use my stock watchlist just like my adult members do, and they choose which stock they want to spend their £10 on. I as the parent, execute the purchase on their behalf. We record down what they’ve bought (we write it down as it’s more engaging and fun) and we’ve even started making a graph they plot on paper to see the growth of their portfolio.
Having spoken to a couple of members in 2023, it seemed they were also doing something similar with their own children.
And so I thought, if members are already doing this, why not make it into a sort of club for the kids?
It’s a fantastic opportunity to sit down with your kids around a table, open up the laptop, get some snacks and get them choosing stocks to buy. If anything, it promotes 121 family time, but it also gets them thinking and aware of putting something aside for the future. A concept I didn’t really understand until I was in my 30’s (and wish I’d started in my teens).
I struggled for money until I was in my late twenties, and had never been taught the simple concepts of spending within my means and putting something aside each month to improve my financial position.
I did not want my children to suffer in the same way. I wanted them to be able to live their lives with the freedom that not worrying about income can bring.
And so the Fledgling Investment Club was formed in January 2024.
HOW DOES IT WORK?
The creation of the Fledgling Investment Club makes it super simple for parents to help get their kids start investing. With many Junior Stocks & Shares ISA providers allowing customers to invest as little as £1 a month, almost anyone can get started immediately.
Each month members receive the Monthly Watchlist. A list of UK stocks which meet Chris’s strict criteria for showing the best potential for growth over the next 10-20 years. These stocks are the same stocks found on the normal members watchlist, only presented in a more visual, child-friendly manner. Parents then sit down with their children once a month and decide together what to invest in.
The children are then encouraged to record their purchases on their Portfolio Tracker Sheet which is downloadable from the members page in both a printable or digital form.
Members also receive a child-friendly Getting Started guide, which contains some very simple lessons on what shares are and how they work.
I am a strong believer that to make investing fun for children there needs to be some form of shorter-term reward. So, upon reaching certain milestones, members will receive special certificates in the post, acknowledging their achievements. The milestones are set in a way that rewards the children for both consistency as well as financial results in their portfolios.
WHO MANAGES MY CHILD’S PORTFOLIO?
You, the parent. I do not manage other peoples money. I provide the results of my analysis, in a child-friendly way, and curate the membership community. You the parent are ultimately responsible for which stocks you ultimately decide to invest in, how much you invest and when. Members simply use my work and analysis to help them make informed decisions and to help them avoid troublesome stocks. Of course, as with any investing, there are the same risks involved if you did this without my service. I cannot take any responsibility for the choices you ultimately make. Of course, this could also be done with play money if you didn’t want to risk actual capital, although you would be missing out on years of compound interest.
WHO CAN TAKE PART?
Almost anyone who can pick a stock from a supplied list. The list is presented visually, with business logos, photos and brief explanations on what the company itself does. This is presented in this way to allow kids to simply pick the logo they like the most if they wish. It’s supposed to be fun of course.
However, the tracking of their stocks performance will suit children typically 9 years old and above, as this requires some basic knowledge of multiplication and percentages, typically learned at school in Year 4.
That said, any parent can take on the responsibility for the tracking of the performance on behalf of their child until they are old enough to do this themselves. If you can pick a stock from a list each month, you’re good.
The idea of the club is to help encourage kids to think about their financial education and raise their awareness of basic financial awareness. Part of the fun and excitement of the club is being part of a membership of likeminded young investors. As a result, there will be a monthly section in the watchlist report that showcases individual members and their achievements. Parents are invited to send in a photo of their child holding a certificate they’ve been awarded, or their portfolio tracker sheet. We also plan to produce club merchandise and coloured ranked t-shirts following the milestone ranking system we have put in place, for members who want to show off their achievements in a different way.
HOW TO JOIN
As of January 2024, the Fledgling Investment Club is only open to the children of existing members. However, if there is particular interest in the club then there is scope to open the doors to the wider public on a case by case basis. At present the best way to express interest in joining is to email Chris Chillingworth at [email protected]