When it comes to investing, people of color are still lagging, according to a survey by CNBC. The survey further noted that half of Black U.S. adults don’t currently own individual stocks, mutual funds, bonds, exchange-traded funds, cryptocurrency or real estate.
In terms of gender, the survey found that 59% of Black women are not invested in anything, compared to 48% of Hispanic women, 34% of White women and 23% of White men. However, one entrepreneur is looking to change that with her new venture.
Tiffany James first got involved in investment in 2019 when a co-worker introduced her to the concept. The said colleague was a Tesla “bull” who kept pushing James to buy a share in the electric car company owned by South African-born Elon Musk. The colleague advised her to use one paycheck to buy stock in Tesla in 2019 when shares were $60 to $70 each.
James would turn her initial investment of around $10,000 into more than $2 million by adding “a mix of long-term growth companies, S&P SPDR exchange-traded funds and semiconductor chip stocks among other investments, according to CNBC, adding that she still owns some Tesla.
According to James, investing in Tesla was her “first real taste of investing” although prior to that, she had a small portfolio. Despite her investment success, the daughter of Jamaican and Haitian immigrants feels she is an outsider “in a world of mostly White men.”
“For people of color, it was something that wasn’t talked about,” she said of investing. “It’s very intimidating, it has its own unique language and if you’re not privy to that language it can be very difficult to understand.”
James now wants to see more Blacks, especially women, show interest in investing as a way of building wealth. To this end, she founded Modern Blk Girl, a community teaching Black women the importance of investing and wealth creation for a fee.
The community now has more than 225,000 (mostly) women, CNBC said. Her “1k to 100,000K in 1 yr” class starts at just under $100 and a monthly subscription is $130.
James’ investment drive was no fluke. She had strategies. Her first strategy was researching companies with “futuristic ideas.” In line with this, she invested in companies like Blink (BLNKW), which produces charging stations. She also invested in something safe, like the S&P 500 (SPY), according to Business Insider.
The 27-year-old also listened to investing stories and advice from people she can relate to. Finally, she joined a community of people with like-minded values. “It’s motivating, having a big-sister, little-sister moment where Black women who have been trading for a while can mentor younger investors,” said James.