By Teneshia “Miss Money Sense” LaFaye
When Warren Buffet invests his money, people take notice. After all, he has built a multi-billion dollar investment portfolio through his Berkshire Hathaway company that puts him in constant battle with his bestie Bill Gates for the designation as the world’s richest man.
Therefore, Buffett is who you should listen to if you want to know where to safely invest your money for a secure financial future. It should speak volumes that he has withdrawn almost a billion worth of stock from Walmart. This, coupled with the fact that Walmart has closed more than 200 stores in the last 12 months, makes it obvious that retail through physical stores is dying.
A decade ago, Buffett predicted the demise of Sears, which recently borrowed $200 million to bring its outstanding loans to almost $1 billion to stay in the retail game.
The new trend is moving toward online stores, where Internet sales king Amazon beats out Walmart more than $100 billion a year in online sales to $14 million. In fact, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos jumped Buffett on the world’s list of richest men. Bezos is third richest behind leader Gates and runner up Amancio Ortega of Spanish retailer Zara. Buffett is now No. 4, and he has anointed the Amazon CEO a retail genius as further evidence that the billionaire investor believes shoppers are moving from visiting “brick and mortar” stores and staying home to “click and order” whatever they want.
Have you noticed the malls you used to hang out at as a teenager are no longer full? Well, you can blame Walmart for the demise of malls, and now Walmart can blame Amazon for forcing the storefront behemoth to close down hundreds of stores, several of which are being turned into prisons.
So I encourage you to pay attention and jump onto the trend of online businesses. Online social networks Facebook and Snapchat have brought in billions for their CEOs and have made physical social clubs almost obsolete. Most travelers go online to buy plane tickets and to book hotel and rental reservations. Airbnb is where more and more people are going for hotels, vacation rentals and apartment rentals. People are gravitating toward online banking to make deposits, transfers and to pay recurring bills. And, of course, apps like Uber and Pandora have transformed the transportation and music industries, respectively.
I’m very fortunate to own an online business that is the Uber of its industry and is taking advantage of one of Buffett’s latest fascinations: energy deregulation. Buffett has invested a few billion into a Nevada energy company and has stated that energy deregulation, which means the freedom for consumers to choose their provider for gas, electricity or solar, is going to be the largest shift of wealth in all of mankind, producing more millionaires and billionaires than any other industry. He put his money where his mouth is, investing $5.6 billion for NV Energy.
So if you trust the billionaire’s investment advice, you should buy an online business and it should probably include energy retail, and I have found it.
Teneshia LaFaye is a former award-winning newspaper journalist and a nationally certified financial education instructor. She leads more than 100 distributors in a home-based energy and telecom business and she owns a health insurance agency with her oldest son. Her two books, What My Mom Taught Me About Money and Mom’s Money Lessons, are available on her web site, www.mytensense.com. Get her FREE daily money tips to work on improving your financial mindset by “liking” her MissMoneySense page on Facebook, www.facebook.com/missmoneysense