The average man seeks to secure a good job, hope to purchase that prestigious car and dwell in that house he has long been dreaming about. Creating wealth does not come on a silver platter but through dint of hard work and wise investments.
Jumia House Ghana, the best online real estate marketplace shares with you six investment tools that can help you create the wealth you have been craving for.
1. Savings Account
The most basic form of investment, having a savings account is one way to store up the little contributions made for a better and wealthier future. In Ghana, banks and savings companies have been empowered by the Constitution to store and protect the monies deposited by account holders. The added feature of flexibility, that is, having access to the account also makes this a very attractive option. Having a savings account also comes with the least risk. However, the interest accrued from savings can be quite little, with rates between 2 to 10%.
2. Treasury Bills
A treasury bill is a short term -debt issued and backed by the full faith and credit of the Ghana government. Treasury bills are low risk in nature, as they are a credit worthy institution by the governement. Treasury bill rate in Ghana are fixed. Maturity dates for treasury bills fall into three types: 91 days, 182 days, 1-year note and two year note. Both the principal and interest can be rolled over after maturity for higher returns. According to statistics provided by the Bank of Ghana on 28th August 2014, 91-day bills accrue an interest of 25 percent, the 182-day bill yielding 26 percent, the 1-year note yielding 22.5 percent while the two year note yields 23 percent.
3. Fixed Deposit
The banks’ version of treasury bills, a fixed deposit is an investment account into which money is deposited for a fixed period, while the interest remains the same. Fixed deposits also have a fairly low financial risk. Fixed deposits come in 30-day, 60-day, 91-day, 182-day and 1-year, two year periods respectively. Interest ranges vary from bank to bank and is averagely 15 year per annum. The good deal with this is, you can negotiate for better interest rates depending on the amount and period chosen. Fixed deposits can also be discounted, meaning cash can be redeemed before maturity, albeit at a fee.
4. Shares/ Stock Exchange
Shares or stocks are investments made in a company in return for dividends. In Ghana, the Ghana Stock Exchange regulates this transaction. Stocks are volatile, as such, they assume the greatest investment risk. Investing in stocks need the guidance of an expert called a stock broker, who will guide you into making the right decisions.
Bonds are long-term financial instruments and have fixed interest rates. Bonds are considered low in risk because when there is bankruptcy debts are paid before equity.
6. Mutual Funds
A mutual fund is a professionally managed type of collective instrument scheme. It involves monies pooled from different sources that is then diversified into different money market instruments. The risk for mutual funds is relatively high due to the uncertainty of returns.
Stopping in Accra is one of my favorite things to do, never more so now than before. Landing in a country where immigration says “Welcome Home” (as a simple way to inform me of my supposed Ghanaian features) is always endearing. Seeing the booming economy can definitely make you want to call the place home. Economic growth of 14.5 percent in 2011 makes 2012’s 7.9 percent seem a disappointment. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) forecasts 7.8 percent for 2013.
Ghana’s oil boom has proven to be a great additive to one of Africa’s most active small and medium enterprise (SME) economies. Its reputation as one of the continent’s most stable democracies almost seems like an added bonus. For these reasons, Ghana has become increasingly attractive to foreign investors.
Here’s a look at some of the best opportunities the west African country has to offer:
Earlier this year the mobile penetration rate in Ghana surpassed 100 percent. This does not necessarily mean that every Ghanaian has a mobile phone. Accounting for multiple sim cards or ownership of multiple mobile phones, telecom insiders estimate that mobile phone ownership is just approaching 16 million. Opportunity for growing the voice market is hard to ignore. But tower managers and telecom investors alike will see the greatest growth in data services.
A booming oil and gas sector is pushing for better all-around service to support their growth while telecom companies continue to build infrastructure in order to improve quality and stability. Installations should also increase network capacity in order to cope with upcoming traffic increases. The introduction of more competitive service bundles and specialized data products can definitely add to profit margins.
The Banking Act in 2007 laid the foundation for change in the financial services industry. Since its passage, financial services in Ghana have improved tremendously. A thriving economy and growing incomes usually underline the potential of the financial sector. But Ghana has shown more promise than other countries in the region. Take Cameroon for example. It has a similar level of income, yet Ghana has more than double the number of ATMs per head of the adult population. Benin, also with a similar level of income, only has one-third of the banks per head of adult population compared to Ghana.
Services in the country have improved. The recent integration of banking ATMs among nine banks in the country, including Standard Chartered Bank, Zenith Bank and Ecobank, allows customers to use their bank cards at ATMs serviced by banks different than the card provider. Barclays created a buzz earlier this year with the announcement of deposit-taking ATMs in Ghana. The service will help to reduce the extremely long queues in banks. But these efforts are not enough.
Big ideas and little capital is the story of most Ghanaian banks. They are simply unable to meet the increasing demand from the energy, mining, oil & gas, and telecommunications sectors. Corporate banking and finance units are understaffed and inefficiently utilized. International trade thrives without adequate trade financing. Bank managers know this and are trying to rapidly improve the quality of service. But, as the story normally goes, capital investment is needed to maintain growth and meet the ever-increasing needs of consumers.
The story of rising real estate prices in thriving oil & gas markets gets old. But the returns never stop coming. The office and commercial sectors are plagued by poor management and lack of capacity. Downtown Accra and neighboring suburbs are seeing a surge in construction as developers see a growing influx of cash from foreign investors. Improvements in consumer financing and mortgages in the banking sector will also add to the opportunity for residential and commercial real estate.
Ghana is an industrial darling on the continent. It is more advanced than many other African countries. But it still nowhere near its full potential. Pipeline manufacturing for the oil & gas sector fails to meet the demand in timely fashion with quality. Sometimes you just want the basic things manufactured without hassle, says one industry insider, “but it is the small things that can slow up many projects.” Yet such lamenting should not deter foreign investors. Similar complaints have been thrown around about other industries. Every time a complaint surfaces, it encounters a group of anxious entrepreneurs waiting to solve it (a luxury of Ghana’s entrepreneurial makeup).
Imports of agro-chemicals and related agriculture products will slow over time as new companies work to manufacture agricultural inputs locally. Ghana has great potential as a car manufacturing country, possibly even electric cars. The growth potential of gas liquefaction continues to be the talk of the town as the queues at gas stations increase. Whatever the product, there is someone in Ghana at this moment discussing how to make it locally. The potential of the overall industrial sector in Ghana is unimaginable. But it can only be reached with more capital.
It is the catchall category, but Ghana is still in need of services across the board. The country requires management level education facilities (i.e., nursing, finance, etc) to meet the growing need in the country’s private sector. Medical services fail to provide high quality care, leaving foreigners and some locals to travel outside the country for specialized medical care. Information and communications technology (ICT) services are inadequate to meet the growing various needs of private sector businesses from SME to oil & gas.
A lack of investment in the above sectors has the potential to stymie Ghana’s economic growth. Great returns are available, especially if investors can connect investments to Ghana’s energy and mining boom.