* BOOK REVIEWS * Lump Sum Investment
 
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"The latest financial block-buster"
- Old Mutual Client Services in a letter to every policyholder in the country

"Congratulations on an excellent product!"
- Dr Prieur du Plessis, Managing Director, The Plexus Group, April 2000

The book is well-written and simply put together in a manner that is not condescending. It offers sound advice to anyone who has recently retired or come into a capital lump sum. It is divided into three sections: investment principles, investments and putting the information together. Graphs and spaces for the reader to include personal information into tables are included, further enhancing the relevance of the book and the information contained. Here, the reader has a book with practical and useful information on how to handle newfound wealth.
- Nicola Ellis, Natal Mercury, 30 August 1999

If you could be shown an investment that had zero risk and negligible costs, and could make huge returns, would you be interested? There’s no ‘middleman’ and not too much sales talk involved, and the minimum investment is about five hours of you time; no upfront commissions and no cancellation penalties… You’re looking at it on this page – a book that’ll help you look before you leap.
In Lump Sum Investment, financial adviser Chris Preen doesn’t promise to make you a financial guru, but he does give you the tools to invest wisely. ‘Investment is the art of taking calculated risks to achieve perceived gains,’ says Chris. This book deals with the only part of the equation you can usually influence – the ‘calculated’ part.
- Gail Jennings, The December Edition of The Money Standard (The newsletter distributed to Standard Bank Clients Nationwide)

"I thought it to be excellent"
- Professor Japha, University of Cape Town, November 1999

"Thank you for your 'Lump Sum Investment' book, I found it money well spent (a good investment!) and was written in a way I understood."
- Joy Donovan, Managing Director - The Lester Donovan Group, November 1999

"People do strange things," says Chris Preen. They will get various quotations before they, for example, buy a new set of tyres, but when it comes to investments, they don’t do any investigations into alternative investments or investment opportunities that would suit their circumstances better.

He says that many people don’t like or understand finances and they therefore very hesitant. Investors should become more involved with their investments – that is why he wrote the book.

Chris has been interested in investments for a long time. While he was still a B.Com student, he was already dabbling in the stock market. Thereafter, he joined the Small Business Development Corporation, before getting involved in the assurance industry.

Now Chris has his own business and web-site. People who go into his web-site can download lots of practical and usable information for their own purposes.

He is very pro offshore investments, as he does not think it is a good idea to keep all your investments in one place or product. South Africans also live in the global village, and that is why it is necessary for them to broaden their horizons – wider than their immediate surroundings and opportunities.

"I estimate that the Rand will, over the next 3 years, reduce in value. It is therefore prudent to invest offshore. The interest rates in South Africa will still reduce, but not as quickly as people hope it will."

Chris Preen lived and worked in London for two years. With hindsight he realised that South Africa was the land where the opportunities were. "The small businessman, especially, can do lots to improve the situation. Nowadays there are relatively few people who have relevant qualifications. If you are good and efficient, you can make lots of money. You could make money easier in South Africa than you would overseas," he says.
He says people will easily be able to follow his book, and get answers to their questions. If a person is not too sure whether the book would be of value to them, they could read the foreword, as the whole book is summarised therein.

People who read his book will be able to work out which type of financial advisor they should be consulting. It is always good to use an independent advisor, rather than a corporate advisor, as one should be looking for unbiased advice, not that which is prescribed.
It is important to get the whole investment proposal in writing. This proposal must also indicate clearly how much of the investment amount will be going to commission and any other costs, so that the investor knows precisely what is being done with his money.
- Dr. Hilda Grobbelaar, The Kwana, October 1999 (Translated from Afrikaans)

NEWSFLASH: Cima Accountants Register here

Chris Preen has been involved in the financial field for over twelve years. Last year he released the book Lump Sum Investments – a Gateway to Wealth in South Africa. Lump Sum Investments is a well-written book which gives an overall view of the different financial ventures available to South Africans. Chris has penned the book using simple language, graphs and illustrations ensuring that the information is easy for everybody to understand. In addition, Chris also has a website which allows one access to valuable financial information.

Chris stated that the relaxation of Exchange control has resulted in an explosion of investment opportunities. A case in point is Unit Trusts which are now offered by more companies and in more variations than in the past. At the same time he pointed out that an individual can easily be taken for a ride by a bogus financial advisor.

Part of the reason for the number of phony financial advisors, Chris explained, was the fact that there was no controlling body for financial advisors in this country. ‘Anybody can make business cards, call themselves a financial advisor and defraud the public’, he warned. Fortunately, plans are afoot to pass the Financial Advisors Bill which will contain a strict code of conduct which all financial advisors will have to adhere to, and will also enable the public to check out the credentials of their advisor. As it is not certain when the new Bill will be passed, Chris gave us a few handy hints on how to go about choosing a financial advisor.
· Find out what the qualifications of the advisor are and how long he/she has been in business.
· When deciding on a financial venture, get at least three quotes in order to get the best deal. ‘It is strange how a person will get at least three quotes when installing a swimming pool, yet will request only one when investing large sums of money’, Chris stated.
· Visits your advisors office in order to inspect his/her business operations.
Chris further explained it is imperative that every individual should have some form of investment which ensures comfortable living after retirement and pointed out that women, in particular, need to start taking control of their finances. Though there have not really been any investment packages made specifically for women, many companies are starting to take cognisance of social changes and are starting to offer investment opportunities tailor-made for women.
According to Chris investing Offshore is also a wise financial decision and every individual should strive to invest at least 30% of his/her money Offshore. In addition, one should invest one’s money over a period of five years as this enables one to review the investment’s financial status after this period and adopt a new plan if necessary.
Given the economic status of the country, Sisters asked Chris whether it was wise to invest money in South Africa. ‘Absolutely’, he replied. ‘This country offers great value, more value than the United States.’
The majority of South Africans will not have sufficient money to sustain themselves when they retire. When deciding on an investment opportunity choose wisely, choose carefully.
- Sisters Magazine, January 2000 issue

Metro Beat staffers are certainly not the types with lump sums to invest. But if you have recently inherited or made a sack full of money you will no doubt be confused as to exactly how to invest it, provided of course, in this volatile economy, you are not foolish enough to go out and blow it on some idle whim or play the one-armed bandits.
If you’re sensible, you’ll go out and buy a copy of Lump Sum Investments – A Gateway to Wealth in South Africa, written by our very own bright Durban lad, Chris Preen. Chris has been in the business of making people wealthy for 12 years, has received numerous awards, and to top it all, is a member of MENSA, the organisation for the super intelligent.
There are many confusing investment products in the marketplace, some good and others, not so good. The book gives a good and simple overview of these investment products and gives excellent advice on tried and tested investment principles.
Typical products that people invest in are Unit Trusts, the Stock Exchange, property and endowments. Obviously, some high-risk products offer higher returns, and in this well-written book, you will be able to put together an overall investment plan that suits your risk profile. It offers what the author calls "foolproof solutions that offer maximum return at minimum risk."
In addition, the book examines the tax implications of your investments (that all too scary notion of the Receiver of Revenue just waiting to gobble up your money) as well as covering estate duty. As the author says, the book may be the best investment you can make. After having read it from cover to cover, we have to agree. Now, all we need is the lump sum….
- Peter Bendheim, METROBEAT, February 2000 edition

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