As COVID-19 comes towards the endemic stage, people are starting to travel again. But you might have noticed that flight tickets are significantly more expensive than before. If you haven’t already felt the pinch with your daily food consumption, you would probably realize that the portion is much lesser. Such are the signs of inflation everywhere.
No need to panic, at least not yet!
It is not that things are getting any better but our money is really dropping in value. This is why prices of goods and services are rising. The main problem is that consumers do not know how long this will go on. And with these uncertainties, anyone would start pressing the panic button. So, before you react in this manner, know that there is something you could do, especially in the financial sense. So, here are some ways to invest (or keep your money) especially around 2022 when inflation is surging.
In the United States, they have the TIPS or Treasury Inflation-Protected Securities which are government bonds that are affected by the rising (and dropping) of inflation. This means that in inflation, the rates go up and vice-versa. In Malaysia, you can consider putting your money into EPF (Employees Provident Fund). With an average of 5 to 6% interest per year, you can contribute on your own. This can be added to the current amount you are contributing through your monthly salary (with a cap of course!).
High-yield bank accounts
Cash is always king and in times of inflation, it would be a great time to put your money in high-yield accounts. Most banks provide these facilities where you enjoy high-interest rates for putting a certain amount into these accounts. The term would usually be like 5 to 8 years. The amount might be higher than usual but you know that you have a certain amount stashed in an account with high returns after the term ends.
Invest in bonds
The government or companies that are looking to raise money (for capital, expansion or other reasons) would issue a bond. This type of debt security allows you to ‘lend money to them. From there, you will receive a pre-determined interest rate during a certain period, usually once every 6 months. After the term is over, you will sell the bonds back to the issuer and retrieve your principal amount. However, do note that although they are low-risk investments, there is still a certain amount of risk involved, hence you need to check the ratings of each bond before investing. Among the common bonds in Malaysia include the AmanahRaya Syariah Trust Fund, the Principal Islamic Lifetime Enhanced Sukuk Fund and the AmDynamic Fund.
Don’t forget your savings
Inflation always brings about a sense of urgency and stress. This is not the time to sell everything you have. Keep your insurance and unit trust payments as they would be still constant. You should, if possible increase your contributions in those markets as they are stable too. There is no reason to surrender your policies thinking that you might need extra funds. Keep saving the way you are saving.