Who are you?
I am the Carlos, 27 years young and Portuguese by birth. My brother and I grew up in a children's home and moved to Germany (Frankfurt) after adoption at the age of 4. Here I later graduated from high school, studied physics and economics, and paved my way towards my own start-up. Currently, I am the founder of the financial education platform Beyond Saving, with which we aim to bring entertainment and fun to the topic in order to see Germany in a more financially fit position in the years to come.
Fun Facts: I have been a passionate surfer since I was 10. During my student exchange in Australia, I was knocked off the board by a tiger shark - that's pretty funny from today's perspective. I also love reading agent stories - unfortunately I never made it to the BND.
When did you start investing?
When I was 8. Back then, my brother and I would buy Pokémon cards and sell them back to other students in exchange for delicious food and pocket money. It was a solid business model. My first stock was Berkshire, which I bought at 16. I started reading Benjamin Graham's work when I was 14 and became "infatuated" with the subject relatively quickly.
What is your investment strategy?
I follow a passive, broadly diversified approach, which I map using mainly ETFs. My firm belief is that we don't need to beat the market to achieve attractive returns over the long term. Marketing timing and stock picking are approaches I absolutely do not recommend - unless you feel like gambling a lot of money, then this is for you.
My model is Ray Dalio's all-weather portfolio. The investment strategy has worked very well over the years - especially when the markets have corrected sharply. The broad diversification across equity markets, bonds, real estate, commodities & gold provide a solid foundation for long-term wealth accumulation. You can replicate the model with as few as 5-6 ETFs.
What is your secret tip or a sector/stock that you currently like?
Broad diversification across different markets and a long-term investment horizon are the most important success factors from my point of view. You don't always have to think things in a complicated way to be successful. If I had to choose, it would be an ETF on the Indian market, which will show significant growth momentum in the coming years. Investors can safely add that to their portfolio. Another sector that I find very exciting is e-gaming and cyber security - there are also numerous ETFs for this.
What was your biggest investment mistake?
I didn't have any blunders, just a weak investment strategy. When I started with individual investments, I did a lot of day trading. From today's perspective, that cost me a lot of returns. Moreover, it was very stressful to look at the portfolio every 30 minutes.
Today I am much more relaxed. My ETF portfolio is not very volatile, is rising steadily and lets me sleep peacefully at night.
What does your portfolio currently look like?
This is relatively easy to explain:
10% Real Estate
5% Cyber Security ETF
5% E-Gaming ETF