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Millennials are setting a global trend of moving back home.

According to The Guardian, a quarter of the young adults in the UK live with their parents. In the US, according to Pew Research Centre, more people are living with their parents than in 1940s.

This somewhat reminds us of a painful reality that we have buried in the depths of our collective memory: times are hard.

When rand started gaining, boosted by larger than expected trade surplus for June and weak US GDP data which pulled back the timing for Fed rate tightening, the poor didn’t experience any change. The prices of unleaded and leaded fell but they continued to feel the pinch. The poor then will only celebrate victory when the prices – food prices – have fallen.

But, when will that be?  The investigation by a special police unit into allegations that Gordhan oversaw the establishment of an illicit investigation during his tenure as head of national tax agency has changed, literally, everything: the rand was set for the largest weekly slump, last week, since December, when Nhlanhla Nene was fired and replaced with a little-known lawmaker, against the Dollar.

According to fin24, there is a 50% probability that should SA’s minister of finance be replaced, rand will decline by R3.00.

Rand will fall – so much fall as swoop like a kamikaze pilot out of the sun with screeching engines and a wail of air-raid sirens.

We are supposed to be cool but it helps to sometimes face reality, lose positive demeanor and say, “This is way too much. My days are nightmarish!”

Well, maybe just maybe these are challenges a youth of 1940 was faced with!

Still, I believe it’s unfair to compare the millennials with the 1940 youth: the cost of services has increased at a much higher rate than that of other commodities in recent years – no wonder you are feeling broke at your highest pay.

We are a generation of consumers and have pawned our future to the hilt in an effort to maintain our living standards.  Modern life is partly to blame!

The degree of stress young people put themselves under in the pursuit of affluence is frightening – millennials value external symbols of success more highly than internal wholeness. And this, without us knowing, messes our lives?

I quite often visit people with either a pool or a court, sometimes both. You would think that they spend hours using these wonderful amenities, but more often than not, nobody ever uses them.  The funny thing is, they are sinking in debt and cannot even insure their lives for the amount of the bond (the cost is low) to ensure that, should something happen to them prematurely, their family will be bond-free in the security of their own homes.

We are millenials and our world is obsessed with the exceptional. We admire prodigies and geniuses and multimillionaires, and we believe that some people are fundamentally capable of greatness while others are not; we want to be these people – the select few. The inordinate weight this puts on our fragile shoulders is incomprehensible.

Believe me: this is the pressure that makes our generation oblivious of the fact that a gentle frugality with our own and world’s resources seems a whole lot sexier than vulgar and conspicuous consumption – the subsequent results are inflation and high cost of borrowing.

I am perfectly imperfect and, human as I am, try to not fall a victim of the crazy expectations people have on me. Perfection is so overrated, that is why you will find me dancing all the time – not because I am perfect, just because I love dancing and know that too much sitting and not doing much encourages lymph nodes to accumulate waste, reducing immunity.

So, we need to learn not to spend our lives on autopilot, research has found out that a wandering mind makes people unhappy, and make better financial decisions – does retail therapy ring a bell?

I am a great fan of mindfulness. It is incredible to have space where you are allowed to just be, especially at a time in life when you’re feeling things very intensely. The more I slow down and listen to my breath, the less I have to worry about. I start to feel that I am coming home to myself.

And, believe me, I have started buying things I need; nothing more. My lipstick addiction is gone – frankly speaking, I do not know how many lipsticks I own. With time, I am starting to discover myself: I am simple, understated and value ‘me time’ more than anything.

I discovered my love for Scandinavian Style: understated hues, natural materials, and tactile textures.  And, luckily, mindfulness enables me to help you be financially savvy and you better use them – it seems like we are heading for tougher times. The tips are as follows:

Curb your eating out. Those lunch breaks add up, so consider making your own food. Keep your restaurant visits to a minimum.

Look for free activities. Go to the library for books or magazines. Spend time doing cheap outdoor activities like mountain climbing and jogging and ditch the gym.

Buying bulk with friends. If you are single, buying bulk (which is cheaper) just doesn’t make sense. Consider buying bulk with friends and splitting the goods.

Sell your old clutter. Most of it might look like junk, but, believe me, it will come handy to another person.

Save on food. Skip the name brand foods and get store brands. Remember to buy only what you need.

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Why invest for the future



AN investment plan forms a critical pillar of a financial plan, says Tokiso Nthebe, a local author and financial services adviser.

Nthebe, the founder of TKO Financial Wellness and Advisory, says when people invest, they can use their money to buy assets that will increase in value over the long term.
He says these assets can help them build wealth.

“When you invest, your money starts to work for you by providing returns that will beat inflation,’’ Nthebe says.

Nthebe says there is a huge difference between saving and investing.

He says investing requires that you take some level of risk in exchange for an expected return or growth.

Nthebe says Basotho should consider many factors before they decide to start investing.

“It is important to have a clear strategy that guides your investment decisions and to work with qualified professionals,” he says.

Nthebe says one should consider their growth mind-set, investment goals, and their risk tolerance.

In addition, one should consider what kind of growth or return they expect.

He says one should find out whether the institution they invest in is licensed or regulated and how long one should invest.

Nthebe says one should further consider what risks are associated with the investment option and whether there are any associated costs.

He says it is also important to remember that investments take time.

“There are no short cuts to building wealth. Do not fall prey to get-rich-quick schemes,” he says.

Moreover, Nthebe says the investment landscape comprises commercial banks, asset management companies, and insurance companies.

He says each provides different financial products and services.

Nthebe says the Central Bank of Lesotho (CBL) also offers investment solutions such as treasury bills and treasury bonds that Basotho can consider.

Depending on your investment goals, he says financial service providers have a wide range of investment solutions to choose from that cater for short, medium, and long-term goals.

“I encourage Basotho to do thorough research and seek professional advice before making financial decisions,” he says.

Vince Shorb, the United States National Financial Educators Council CEO, writes that “many of the financial problems people face today started when they were young and making their first financial decisions”.

Shorb further says taking on too much debt, not investing early, and failing to plan can take one decades to recover from such.

However, it takes financial literacy to make good decisions, he says.

Financial literacy has been perceived as a tool that gives you the opportunity to be confident and empowered to live the quality of life you have worked hard for.

Shorb says one of the wisest decisions one can make to prepare for the future is to invest.

Investment has been defined as the commitment of funds with a view to minimising risk and safeguarding capital while earning a return.

Refiloe Mpobole

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When Covid-19 hit and the government shut down all gatherings in April 2020, there seemed no way out for ICONICS (Pty) Ltd, a budding events management company based in Leribe district.

They had two options: shut down or innovate to keep the business going.
They chose the latter.

Three years down the line, ICONICS (Pty) Ltd has completely transformed itself from an events management and public relations company into a manufacturing company that is now the envy of Lesotho.
“The closing of events translated into the closing of our business,” Rapitso Mosebetsi, one of the co-founders of ICONICS (Pty) Ltd told thepost this week.
Mosebetsi established ICONICS in partnership with Tumo Mahapa.

Faced with collapse, Mosebetsi say they began buying Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) such as surgical gowns, disposal coveralls and safety apparel for resale.
Eventually they decided to manufacture the PPEs and safety clothing. That was the turning point.
But since the company was already down, Mosebetsi says diversification was a hard nut to crack.

“It became quite a long journey (for us),” he says. “We had to come up with something new for the industry.”
He says they had to overcome stiff competition from giant companies and come up with something unique that would set them apart.
“That was how thermal heating apparel was born,” he says.

“We are the first company to produce thermal heating apparel,” he says.
The company manufactures thermal clothing, which is electric clothing, using power banks of five voltages.
“The voltage is so low to electrocute a person,” he says.
The clothing also has a power button to turn it on and off.

Mosebetsi says the thermal heating apparel is on corporate clothing as well as high-visibility clothing.
Mosebetsi says they started the journey with the support of several organisations, such as the Lesotho National Development Corporation (LNDC) and the Basotho Enterprises Development Corporation (BEDCO), to build their capacity.
Mosebetsi says they also got mentorship support from organisations such as the Global Entrepreneurship Network.
The results of years of hard work are now all out for everyone to see.

In 2022, ICONICS won the M100 000 Business Plan Competition hosted by BEDCO.
This grant enabled them to acquire land and buy five more industrial machines.
This did not only enable the company to increase their production to 100 worksuits a week, but it further created permanent jobs for five people as well as three temporary workers.

Last year, the company took part in the Exporter of the Year event hosted by the LNDC in partnership with the Lesotho Post Bank and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).

Mosebetsi says they won the award for Lesotho’s most innovative and versatile exporter.
He says this did not only put them in the spotlight, but it further encouraged them to do more.
ICONICS was announced as the best exporter of the year at an event hosted by the LNDC earlier this month.
Mosebetsi says this made them proud, as the award is aligned with their vision.

The award further gives the company an opportunity to participate in the regional competition.
He says this opportunity will further give the company a competitive edge in terms of production locally and globally.
“It will be an honour if we can win the regional competition,” he says.

In terms of markets, Mosebetsi says the company has had the opportunity to list their products in the African Trade Market since 2020 with the support of USAID.
This is an e-commerce platform that opens up the market for African countries to list their products.
Mosebetsi says the company did not only get publicity, but the client database also increased.
He says they moved from supplying individuals only to big companies, different organisations, and different government departments such as those involved in mining and health.

Considering the decline of the Lesotho textile industry, Mosebetsi says their secret to success has been their being innovative.
“Our sustainability is matched with innovation,” he says.
Mosebetsi says it also requires patience coupled with lots of investment in terms of time.
“Rome was not built in one day,” he says.

He says working as a team also plays a critical role.
Despite their achievements, Mosebetsi says the market for innovative industries is one of the hardest nuts to crack.
He says the company is in the process of not only making their products known but also educating people about their safety.
Mosebetsi says the other challenge is the decline of the South African Rand as compared to the US Dollar.

He says some of their materials are sourced from China.
Therefore, it is more expensive to buy such materials.
ICONICS is not only seeking to make their brand well known globally, but Mosebetsi says they are also seeking to create more jobs for our youths.

Own Correspondent

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LetsGo and Win!



LETSHEGO Financial Service has launched the LetsGo and Win loan consolidation campaign where customers win weekly and monthly cash prizes of up to M150 000.
The campaign, which was launched yesterday, will end on November 8.
The LetsGo and Win campaign rewards customers for consolidating their loans.
It is aligned with Letshego Lesotho’s version to offer competitive products that cater for the evolving needs of its customers.

The financial services company operates in Lesotho, Botswana, ESwatini, and Zambia.
The Marketing Manager and Business Partner, Tšotetsi Seema, said Letshego Lesotho is committed to delivering increasing value and options to customers.
Seema said this programme is a testament to that commitment.

“The campaign invites customers to consolidate their loans into one low and easy repayment with reduced rates and they stand to win weekly and monthly prizes,” Seema said.

“The weekly cash prizes will be won by lucky customers randomly selected and notified through Letshego Radio shows,” he said.

Additionally, he said two lucky customers will be randomly selected each month and given a chance to spin the wheel of fortune with a chance to receive a maximum of M20 000 each.

“The loans consolidation campaign makes it easier for customers to choose Letshego Lesotho as their preferred financial services partner.”

He said this innovative campaign aims to help individuals streamline their debt payment while benefiting from reduced interest rates.

“Debt consolidation can help customers get a lower monthly payment, pay off their debt sooner, increase their credit score and simplify their life.”

Letshego Lesotho’s Head of Sales, Distribution and Marketing, Motebang Moeketsi, said managing multiple loans can often be overwhelming with varying interest loans due dates and terms.

“The campaign addresses this challenge by combining multiple loans into a single, easy to manage repayment plan,” Moeketsi said.

He added that this simplification not only eases the financial burden on borrowers but also potentially leads to significant savings over time.
Moreover the new consolidation campaign invites customers to take advantage of their best-in-class financial services provided through Letshego Lesotho branch network and digital platforms.

“Letshego Lesotho is committed to increasing financial inclusion through its efforts to serve underbanked communities, promoting financial literacy and delivering positive social impacts for its customers and communities.”

Alice Samuel

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