It has been more than 12 months since the spread of COVIID 19, which disrupted the global economy.  More losses were recorded in businesses and investments with high volatility and unpredictable swing in the market. The wait-and-see period has been overdue, and now investors are eager to build up their portfolio and reclaim their losses. The opening of the economy brings joy to businesses and investors as more economic activities create growth in the consumer, financial, and capital market

 A forward-looking investor will gather relevant information about the market and only choose to invest in a low-risk market and more certainty. Investors should know their options before investing, especially during a pandemic economy. Now, what are some available markets for the investor to invest from the world of investment? 

1) Real Estate Investment Trust (REITs)

REITs that started in the US in the 1960s have bond, stock, and unit trust characteristics. It is a trust fund that pooled money from investors and invests in income-generating real estate assets such as office buildings, shopping malls, hotels, hospitals, warehouses, and other real estate properties. This kind of investment is suitable for small and medium-scale investors to tap into the real estate market. The best part of this investment is the fund and property are professionally managed by the experts who are fund managers and property managers.  Although investors are charged with management fees, it provides less risk for investors to monitor and managed efficiently.  The return of REITs investment can be profitable in the medium to long term. Furthermore, it is best suits the education or retirement types of the investment objective of an investor.

2) Gold

The Pandemic created uncertainty in the global market, pushing the price of the precious metal higher. Many people believe that gold is a “safe haven” asset during a time of uncertainty.  Gold has less volatility than stocks. With the bullish outlook currently, gold demand continues to accelerate. Investors can invest in gold physically (buying gold jewelry or buying gold bars) or by opening a gold investment account with banks. As for Muslims, the investment of gold exceeded 85 grams is obligated to pay zakat. Investing in gold provides several benefits, such as a strong tool against inflation and contain values that will go up during a crisis (e.g., oil crisis). During financial difficulties, investors can pawn gold at Ar-Rahnu or other pawnshops. Hence, investing in gold, especially jewelry and gold bar, is a higher risk of theft if you keep it at home.   

3) Unit Trust

Like REITs, unit trusts are portfolios of a different class of assets such as shares, bonds, derivatives, and real estate. Unit trust funds are pooled together from different investors and are professionally managed by the fund manager. Investing in the Unit trust provides diversification, liquidity, security, affordable, and flexible investment type for investors. In searching for the best performing fund, investors should be looking at the rate of returns and the fund manager's credibility in managing the fund. There are several types of unit trust funds: balanced funds, equity fund, exchange trade funds (ETF), fixed income funds, index fund, international equity funds, money market funds, REIT,s and Shariah funds. These funds provide different returns according to the risk appetite of investors (risk-taker or risk-averse). Nevertheless, investors are encouraged to do their due diligence before investing in Unit trust.

4) Property market

Investing in the property market is only suitable if investors have leverage and a steady job. Currently, the property market could provide a golden opportunity for first-time buyers to enter the market. This is due to the changes in financial scenery, such as reducing the BNM overnight policy rate to the lowest ever rate of 1.75%, lowering EPF contribution from 11% to 7%, and the government's homeownership campaign. Adding to these benefits are developers' initiatives inputting values to their unsold properties and the decreasing asking price for second-hand properties. Investors can still push down at least 20% of the auction price in the auction market as it is a buyer market nowadays. For property market investors on expansionary mode, the commercial property market provides a conducive environment for tenants as the rental adjustments and business negotiations are in place now. This market provides a higher return in the long run with higher investment capital.