What happens if you miss the best trading days?
The investor who tries to “market timing”, i.e. to anticipate the best time to invest or divest, runs a very high risk of missing the biggest market rises. It's very simple: over the past 20 years, anyone who missed the 20 best days on the stock market would have lost ¾ of its potential return !
How to make a financial donation to your children?
You have sold a property and you want to give the money to your children? You want to hand over a stock portfolio to them? Donating is the official way to do this. In Belgium, donation is subject to payment of reduced duties – significantly lower than inheritance taxes. If the donation is made in a direct line, from parents to children for example, it is not always necessary to get it notarized.
Pension savings: necessary but not sufficient
Pension savings is the “must have” product according to your banker. All you have to do is fill in your annual envelope, get the resulting tax advantage, and you will benefit from a nice pension supplement when the time comes. Although it is an essential part of the Belgian saver's arsenal, pension savings cannot in any way be considered a panacea for the future pensioner. Here's why.
5 tips to avoid selling your stocks at a bad time
Bad times in the stock market are inevitable. As an investor, you will experience highs and lows. However, as difficult as it may be, it is important to stick to your investment plan and avoid selling your stocks during a downturn. Why? Because market timing is difficult, if not impossible, to do successfully and trying to time the market often results in missing out on the rebound when it happens.
How fast can you save 200.000€?
To be able to generate an annuity of 1.000€/month for 20 years, you must have accumulated 200.000€. How soon do you think you can get there? Easyvest analyzes several possible scenarios.
What is a recession and how do you deal with it?
The specter of recession haunts our news wires, our newspapers and our televisions. Specter is the word: the thing frightens at the same time as it is elusive. But recessions have always existed, and markets have almost always anticipated them. Armed with this experience, the investor can, if not protect himself against it, at least face the situation with composure.
How much to invest to make 1.000€/month?
Your legal and supplementary pensions will probably not be enough to maintain your lifestyle once you retire. But how much do you need to accumulate to be able to increase your future pension by 1.000€ per month? Easyvest did the math for you.
Easyvest wants to improve the Belgian pension with its new pension planner
Brussels, September 15, 2022. It had been in the cards for over a year. The ambition of easyvest, a Brussels fintech specializing in passive investment, is now materializing: its pension planner, downloaded more than 1000 times over a single weekend, encourages Belgians to act now to improve their pension.
Why are stock market indexes expressed in points?
“The S&P 500 closes at 3.800 points”, this is a well-known end of radio news. But what exactly do these “points” represent? Short lesson of stock indices.
Stories of crises and recoveries: the Greek debt crisis
Weakened by the global economic crisis of 2008, Greece finds itself in a very difficult situation with high debt and a high budget deficit, which is contrary to the principles advocated by the European Union of which Greece is a member. A “debt crisis” followed which shook the markets… and very nearly caused the Union to explode.
Stories of crises and recoveries: the Gulf War
On the night of August 2, 1990, Iraqi tanks invaded Kuwait, leading to a sharp rise in oil prices and a crash in financial markets. An armed conflict followed between Iraq and a coalition of 35 countries including Belgium, led by the United States. Against all expectations, this third world war only had a limited impact on the markets.
Stories of crises and recoveries: Black Monday
On Monday, October 19, 1987, investors around the world watched with horror as the markets collapsed by more than 20%, first in Asia, then in Europe and finally in the United States. A panic attack caused by a combination of anxiety-provoking events that was extremely violent…but fortunately of fairly short duration.
Stories of crises and recoveries: the tulip crisis
The tulip crisis is considered to be one of the first documented speculative bubbles. Despite the doubts that remain about the true consequences of the event, it is nevertheless very instructive on the principles at work in this type of case: very rare product, growing demand, soaring prices… then collapse.
Despite the market downturn in 2022, the index approach has remained efficient
After a first half marked by a general decline in the markets, the index approach continues to show superior performance to that of the other Belgian players analyzed for aggressive risk profiles. Passive management once again demonstrates its relevance, including in a bearish context. In the long term, it seems unbeatable.
Can you lose everything in the stock market?
This is what puts off most of those who are reluctant to invest in the stock market: the risk of losing everything. It would be wrong to say that this risk does not exist. But how likely is it to materialize? Are there safeguards or, on the contrary, particularly dangerous behaviors? Let’s recap.
What is rebalancing and why is it necessary?
When you create an investment portfolio, your risk profile and your financial goals determine the asset allocation within your portfolio – basically, the stock/bond mix. Over time, the performance gap of each asset class can create an imbalance with respect to the initial allocation. Rebalancing will therefore be necessary.
The advantages of “dollar-cost averaging” or staggered investments
When is the best time to invest? If you are afraid of doing the wrong move at the wrong time, you may be tempted to stagger your investment over time: this is called in the US “dollar-cost averaging”. This strategy, applicable anywhere in the world, can even become a recurring method of investment.
Stocks or bonds : how to find the perfect combination
Stocks and bonds are arguably the two best-known asset classes in the investment world. The best known… but not always the most mastered. Moreover, the recent announcements of rate hikes by the central bank are not without effect on the relative attractiveness of these two financial products. Once and for all, let's compare stocks and bonds to avoid confusion.
How to invest in the US stock market?
Through a cognitive phenomenon known as “home bias” or national preference, investors often tend to invest in stocks from their own country. But foreign markets are not without merit. In particular the American stock market is a must-have for Belgian investors. How to take your first steps there?
By becoming a portfolio management company, easyvest is shaking up the Belgian financial sector
Brussels, April 28, 2022. It hasn't happened for six years. Since March 28, Belgium counts a new portfolio management company: easyvest. That a young company manages to endorse the regulatory weight imposed on this type of actor is already an exceptional fact. How it got there – through industry-first technological advancements – is another.
5 tips to invest an inheritance
You have just inherited a substantial sum of money. You want to invest it, but how? Here are some common sense rules for investing the money from an inheritance as wisely as possible.
What is Russia's weight in the global stock market?
The conflict in Ukraine is raging on Europe's doorstep, forcing millions of people to flee the fighting. In order to push Russia to end the conflict, the West is paralyzing its economy with sanctions. Curiously, the markets are resisting this major geopolitical crisis rather well. Let us look at Russia's place on the world financial chessboard to better understand the rather soft reaction to such a terrible conflict.
Would you rather save or invest for your child?
Gone are the days of the super-advantageous “young savings account” offered by most of the major Belgian banks. For 15 years, the interest rates offered on savings accounts have been so low that the formula has completely lost its appeal. But why not rather invest for your child? The gift, in the end, will certainly be more generous.
Meet Antoine from easyvest
Antoine Bouvy, 42 years old. Home: Tervuren. Title: Chief Marketing Officer.
Best investments in 2022: stock market or real estate?
Belgians have always been fans of real estate. Since childhood, they have been told that real estate is the best investment for their money. Information or speculation? Here are our findings.
The index approach has been unbeatable since 2012 in Belgium
The index approach has shown better performance than that offered by the majority of other players in Belgium since 2012, for comparable risk profiles and for all investment horizons between 1 and 10 years. In the case of an asset allocation predominantly in equities, the index approach would have generated over 10 years an average annual return net of fees of 10,9%, which is higher than all comparable investment solutions considered.
Invest with your partner without the fuss
A third of the accounts opened with easyvest are joint accounts, generally between partners. A possibility rarely offered for online securities accounts… which nevertheless has a lot of advantages.
Investing my company's cash, a good idea?
Many companies have dormant cash, for tax or simply operational reasons, which yields almost nothing – or even worse, which depreciates by being invested at a rate lower than inflation. Is it wise to invest this cash in the stock market? How to proceed ? Explanations in this blog.
December: gifts for children, tax reductions for adults
Do you see the arrival of December and its usual share of expenses with concern? Bad news: in addition to the tree and gifts, it would be wise to save a little budget to spend on your pension products. Good news: these "expenses" will constitute a very useful supplementary pension in a few years, and are also tax deductible! You have a few days left to pack it all up.
Is your money safe with easyvest?
Whether you are a first-time client or new to the easyvest community, you may be wondering how we keep our clients' money safe. Answer in 5 points.
What will happen to my bank accounts when I die?
When a death occurs, the financial institution freezes the accounts of the deceased - and of his spouse in the event of a community of property regime - while waiting to be able to designate with certainty his heirs. To avoid the inconvenience this situation causes to your loved ones and, above all, to prevent it from continuing, take the initiative!
Group insurance: is the guaranteed return a poisonous gift?
In Belgium, group insurance, this form of pension savings taken out by an employer for its employees, is subject to a guaranteed return rule which currently stands at 1,75%. Good or bad thing?
Are you an active or a passive investor?
Easyvest specializes in passive investing. Yes, you know, but is "passive investing" really no longer a secret to you? What makes the active investor different from the passive investor? Today, we dot the i's and cross the t's on the topic.
Your will: why and how to write it now
The word "will" refers to a chapter in its existence that one would like to postpone as far as possible. Yet, it's never too early to write a will! Getting into it with full knowledge of the facts and in full possession of your means is to maximize the chances of a peaceful succession for your loved ones. Explanations and advice in this blog.
Price return VS total return : don't get confused !
"The BEL 20 is back to where it was 6 months ago." This is a sentence commonly written or uttered in the media. But what "level" are we talking about exactly? In the case of the BEL 20, it is usually a price return, measuring the appreciation or depreciation of the market value of the stocks composing the index. This does not take into account any dividends paid out (and reinvested), which are actually part of the total return of the portfolio.
The index approach offers the best performance since 2012
The index approach has shown better performance than that offered by the majority of other players in Belgium since 2012, for comparable risk profiles. In the case of an asset allocation predominantly in equities, the index approach would have generated over 10 years an average annual return net of fees of 10,7%, higher than all comparable investment solutions considered.
The pacte adjoint, the key to a successful financial donation
It is possible to make a donation without going before a notary and still retain partial enjoyment of your assets. All you have to do is set up a “pacte adjoint” or side agreement. Explanations and a free downloadable model in this blog!
Confirmation bias: no time for contradiction
“Investing in the stock market is too risky." How many times have you been told the story of Uncle Robert who lost everything on a foolish stock market bet? Subconsciously, your research on the subject only tends to confirm this hypothesis; you will never take the plunge. Confirmation bias prevents you from thinking rationally about the stock market and admitting that, over the long term and with a diversified portfolio, it is probably your best source of return.
Meet Jim from easyvest
Jim Stockman, 23 years old. Home: Braine-l’Alleud. Title: Full Stack Developer.
Representativeness bias: beware of misleading associations
I invested in ArgenX, a biotech which tripled its value in one year. As Celyad is also a listed European biotech, I guess it could give me a return of around + 200% quickly. This is an example of the representativeness bias: the tendency to generalize from a few elements or particular cases.
Meet Pierre from easyvest
Pierre Vanobbergen, 23 years old. Home: Brussels. Title: Full Stack Developer.
Anchoring bias: don't get stuck with a fixed idea
You see a €50 T-shirt in a department, and a few minutes later another at €35. Good deal, it’s really cheap! Still, if you had seen the €35 T-shirt in the first place, you might not have found it so cheap. The anchor - the first price observed - undoubtedly swayed your opinion.
Home bias: the fear of the unknown
Buy Colruyt shares rather than Walmart. Solvay rather than Celanese. UCB rather than Pfizer. This is a usual investment reflex, often irrational, called "home bias". Are you subject to this little quirk? What consequences can this have on your portfolio?
Cognitive biases: when irrationality guides our investments
In 1970, economist and later Nobel Prize winner Eugene Fama introduced the “efficient financial markets” theory, based on two main assumptions: the rational behavior of agents and perfect information. However, whether in their relationships, preferences or purchases, humans are often unpredictable ... even irrational. This was demonstrated 30 years later by another Nobel Prize winner, Daniel Kahneman, through his in-depth study of "cognitive biases". Easyvest is devoting its first "summer series" to it.
Meet Charles from easyvest
Charles de Brabandere, 35 years old, 2 children. Home: Brussels. Title: Chief Technology Officer.
Inflation is back: what consequences for your money?
As the world appears to be slowly recovering from the COVID-19 crisis, the specter of inflation hangs over developed economies. Should we be worried? A look back at a phenomenon whose name is often better known than its implications.
How to build product/market fit for a B2C fintech?
For any start-up, it sounds like the quest for the Holy Grail. And the road ahead is anything but straight. Inspired by other entrepreneurs, we have succeeded in implementing a relatively simple method to assess and hopefully maintain our product/market fit. Here are the main lessons learned from this exercise.
Behind easyvest : take a backstage tour
Become an expert on trackers, stocks, bonds, financial markets strategies : this is obviously what we wish for all (future) Easyvest clients. But not only ! With Behind Easyvest, we take you elsewhere, behind the scenes of our business, which is much more than just financial. Here is the reason for this initiative.
Meet John from easyvest
John Makowski, 35, two children. Home : Genappe. Title : Head of Product Design.
Sustainable investment, ESG, SRI : what are we talking about?
Climate Walks, Joe Biden’s stance against his predecessor: sustainability is no longer a fad, but a new global paradigm. Finance is not excluded from this movement, and many of you share your concerns with us on the subject. While Europe has just positioned itself, it seemed appropriate to clarify the very notion of sustainable investment, which is subject to multiple interpretations.
Meet Camille from easyvest
Camille Van Vyve, 37, married, 3 children. Home: Mexico City. Title: Content Strategist.
Are women better investors than men?
Women represent 31% of Easyvest investors. But they invest on average 30% more money than men and for a period 4 times longer. Coincidence or a reflection of a deeper behavioral difference? The finding was striking enough to make us want to know more.
Bonds, an essential ingredient of a balanced portfolio
Bonds are often considered the simplest and most accessible investment product. By analogy to Maslow's pyramid of needs, if a "pyramid of investments" were to be established, bonds would undoubtedly constitute a form of primary need: a prerequisite for any other form of investment.
easyvest raises 3 million euros to become the European leader in PensionTech
Brussels, February 25, 2021. Easyvest, a Brussels scale-up specialist in online investment, announces a capital increase of 3 million euros to accelerate its growth and transform the way Belgians plan their pensions.
Your legal pension is threatened: here is why
The legal pension is an essential source of income, which ensures that a retiree receives 60% of his working remuneration. However, this ratio could drop to 40% as demographics put pressure on our pension system. Under these conditions, constituting a supplementary personal pension is a necessity.
How does the belgian pension system work?
Since Roman times, states have sought to provide income to their retirees through a “pension system”. Currently, in Belgium, pension income comes from 4 pillars: legal, occupational, personal, and other savings. This complex system is at the heart of the financial challenges faced by every saver. Figuring out exactly how much income you will have in retirement is a question that requires careful planning, as well as the right advice and tools.
What is pension planning and how to start?
Worker or retiree, pension concerns us all whether it is to accumulate a pension capital, or to receive a retirement income out of this capital. It is a long-term activity spanning over 60 years and consisting of two phases: accumulation and distribution. Saving early and frequently through performant and tax-efficient investment vehicles is necessary to overcome the shortcomings of the statutory pension and the traditional savings account. Whatever your situation, running a simulation with our dedicated pension planning tool is the best way to start.
A brief history of crises
Financial crises are times of high uncertainty that can cause stress and questioning for any investor. What will be its depth and duration? Will the market rebound? Should I liquidate my portfolio? Looking at the history of financial markets and analyzing past crises can tell us a lot about the behavior of crises and help us adopt the right attitude when the time comes.
What is a tracker?
A tracker or index fund is an investment fund of which the strategy is to replicate or “track” the performance of a financial index. It differs from traditional investment funds in its passive approach that drastically reduces costs and avoids investment managers’ mistakes. Most trackers can be bought on a stock exchange all day long. These are referred to as Exchange Traded Funds or ETFs.
1% less in fees could mean 500.000€ savings in 40 years
When investing, the impact of fees on returns is often neglected, overshadowed by the promises of great performance made by financial advisors. While it is normal to pay to be advised and to invest, applicable rates in Belgium can be inflated by a factor 5 for similar investments. Expressed as a percentage, fees may seem irrelevant. A 1% increase has nevertheless a significant impact on the long-term value of your investment portfolio.
What is exactly a financial index?
"The S&P 500 is at its all-time high", "the BEL 20 reaches 4,000 points", "the Nikkei 225 loses 20% after Fukushima" ... Behind these Breaking News lies the notion of index, a central concept in finance which highlights a financial trend at a glance. In a nutshell, an index is a financial measure that allows an investor to swiftly evaluate the performance of a defined set of financial instruments. It generally covers a stock exchange, a geographical area or a given sector. If the financial assets considered are most often equities, there are also bond and derivatives indices.
5 ways to act smartly when the market drops
Global stock markets appreciate steadily over the long term, it is an undeniable historical fact. That being said, a crisis will most certainly pop up sooner or later and temporarily halt the uptrend. Unfortunately, this is the limit of our ability to predict the future, and let’s be honest, no one can formally predict the timing of the next downturn, neither its duration or its magnitude.
2017, a regular and quiet financial year
2017 was a normal financial year, rather quiet actually. In Easyvest's portfolios, global equities rose by 8% while sovereign bonds in the euro area remained stable. Let's come back on some key elements that shaped this financial year.
The best investor in the world has not beaten the market for 15 years
Warren Buffet, arguably the best active investors of all time, has been praising passive investing recently. Why on earth would such an icon of Wall Street shot himself in the foot? Some critics will claim he is getting senile. Lucid people will however realize that he is simply being honest, acknowledging that even him has not managed to beat the market for the last 15 years.
Unlike trees, markets go up to heaven
When financial markets reach historical highs, it is human to think twice before investing, or even considering selling everything to take a profit. Our poorly wired brain persuades us that it will not go higher and that a drop is more than likely. Our intuitions are, however, misleading.
2016, a good and typical financial year in the end
2016 was a good and typical financial year in the end. In our Easyvest portfolios, world stocks rose by 12% while European bonds gained 3%. Yet, the year had begun very badly and was marked by several events with potentially devastating outcomes. Let us review the sinuous course of a normal financial year.
What makes a good financier?
Sugar, almonds and above all butter! These are the 3 main ingredients of a good financier. For once, Easyvest offers you a lighter post than our usual financial topics. Discover the origin and the recipe of a delicious cake in the shape of a gold bullion dedicated to investors. Impress your guests with our delicious recipe!
What is the European government bond market ?
A government bond is a debt security issued by a sovereign State. For an individual who lives in a eurozone country, European bonds are probably the safest form of investment. In the eurozone, Italy, France, Germany and Spain are the largest issuer of government bonds and account for 80% of all issues in the 19 countries of the zone.
The higher the fees, the lower the return
In most situations of our daily life, paying more gives us access to better services and better products. Good restaurants are expensive and so are nice cars. Investment is an exception to this rule. Although this may be counter-intuitive for some, paying more for a financial service does not lead to better returns, it is even quite the opposite.
Comparison of fees charged by online financial advisors in Belgium
Many financial advisors provide online investment services in Belgium. It is however not always easy to understand what and how fees are actually charged. Indeed, these fees vary depending on the provider, the amounts invested and the risk profile. In this post, we propose to dissect the fees charged by 5 Belgian digital actors: Treetop, Medirect, Keytrade, Evi and Easyvest.
Belgian banks are 5 times more expensive than easyvest
Getting an extensive view of the fees charged on your investments turns out to be very complex and painful. Indeed, fees are poorly or not communicated by financial advisors, fragmented and spread over several reports, or simply hidden when regulation allows it. Easyvest strives here to shed light on the foggy fees of Belgian banks’ funds.
What do we mean by "the market"?
We often talk about “the market” without clearly defining it. Actually, many markets exist and it is crucial to define which market we’re talking about to avoid confusion. For Easyvest, the market is made of all the companies that are traded on a stock market in the world. While it is impossible to invest on the whole market today, technological developments suggest it might be possible in the future.
When is the right time to invest? Now!
Investors try tirelessly to answer a simple question: what is the right time to invest? Our analysis shows that if you invest each year and over the long term, it is better to invest as soon as your money is available regardless of the market environment.
Nobody beats the market in Belgium
By entrusting your money to a professional financial advisor, like a private banker or fund manager, you might expect to get higher financial returns than those of the market. Well the truth is nobody systematically beats market in the long term!