Hatch Investor Profile Series: Westy is ride or die about the share markets.

Shane Weastell, Westy if you know him, is a 50-year-old Fire Protection Project Manager based in the Waikato. He’s got investing tips to share. Read on!

A bit about me

When it comes to my biggest dreams, it’s a toss-up. I'd choose between touring the USA coast to coast with the crew on Big Harley Cruisers or working for an investment firm helping people work their way towards financial freedom. I'd want to teach them how to budget and pay their future selves first. But I also want to see that coastline. Maybe I can do both.

My biggest inspiration when it comes to investing is Warren Buffet. He’s an absolute legend in the investing world, if only everyone followed his teachings, with the same level of patience and persistence! He has so much integrity and spends his time educating people by generously sharing his knowledge.

My investing strategy

I started investing back in 1998, when I first came across Rich Dad – Robert Kiyosaki. I read all of his books. Then I read a book by a guy called John Burley. His book, ‘Money Secrets of the Rich’, was a complete game-changer for me. It set me up for the future as I followed the book’s key messages of working hard to get out of debt and putting everything extra I made into the markets to get my first property investment. David & Tom Gardner were also great mentors to me.

As you can see, I’m a bit of an avid reader. I’ve built a massive home library of books on investing in property, shares, bonds and business. Like my buddy Buffett, I read as much as I can, whether it’s online, books, kindle or investing podcasts. I try to learn something new every day.

When I got started, my investing goal was to make a minimum of 12% return on my investment with the end goal of having enough money to buy our first home in Sydney. Fast forward 2.5 years and I’ve smashed this goal with a compounding annualised return of 28.6% which was more than enough to get into that house! After this win, I went on to build a portfolio of homes in New Zealand and Australia. But here’s the killer: I lost them all in the 2008 crash and didn’t go near the share markets again until last year. You win some; you lose some.

How do you invest with Hatch?

I was looking for a cost-effective way for us to invest in the largest, best-performing market on the planet when I came across Hatch. Hatch gave me a way to get into the US market, and it’s been great to watch it evolve. It was amazing to have access to a platform where I could put my long-term value investment strategy to use. I’ve got a robust resistance to market ebbs & flows; they don't bother me. 

I strongly believe in understanding the business you’re investing in. Make sure it’s financially stable and sets itself apart from competitors. Before I invest in a company, I ask myself a few questions:

  1. Has it got a future?

  2. Has it reached its potential?

  3. Has it got a long future of growth ahead of it?

Right now, in my portfolio, I have some industrial, tech, Real Estate Investment Trust’s and Commodities shares. My biggest winners are The Trade Desk (TTD), Apple (AAPL) and Stamps.com (STMP). Sadly, I have some losers at the moment: ProtoLabs (PRLB) and NVIDIA (NVDA).

My best investing tip

If I could impart some investing tips to people just getting into Hatch, I’d say, learn the importance of understanding financial statements (cash flow, income & balance sheets). Read as much as you can and don’t listen to the “experts”. There’s a lot of noise out there. Remain calm during market corrections and rises. You’re going to make mistakes, and these are the times you’ll learn the most.

Most importantly, hold for the long term. If you’re chasing a quick buck, you’re going to lose. Try to enjoy yourself on the ride. It’s not unlike a long motorcycle ride: there will be bumps, gravel on the road and you might even have a spill or two. Ride with a crew of people you trust, and learn and talk to these like-minded people, because they’ll help you to grow, which in turn will fuel your passion for investing.

What is Hatch?

With Hatch, you can buy and sell shares in over 2,900 companies & 500 exchange-traded funds, all listed on the US share markets. Invest dollar amounts to buy as much or as little of a company or ETF as you like, even if it’s a fraction of a share. See how it works

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