Investing Opportunities for Scouts
Here are two investment opportunities Scouts can participate in. Each requires a small investment each month, $20 or $50 depending on which program is used. In addition, each provides information on the whys and hows of investment in a way the Scout age boys can understand.
- First Start (1-800-531-0553) - This program is by USAA. The program is open to all youth even though the USAA is primarily for the military. The minimum investment is $20/month.
- Stein Row Young Investors Fund (1-800-338-2550) - The minimum investment is $50/month.
Are these programs worth participating in? Yes, they are, for two reasons. First, these programs were designed to educate kids on the benefits of saving and investing money. Second, starting early in these programs can produce very good results and show Scouts a real benefit, having money available when they need it. Here are two examples:
- A Boy Scout starts working on Personal Management merit badge at his third summer camp since joining Scouts. He chooses to invest $20 a month into the First Start program. During the next five years, his investments earn an average of 7%. When he graduates from high school, he will have over $1400 to invest in a good used car or possibly the down payment for a new car.
- A Boy Scout who has just graduated from Cub Scouting starts working on Personal Management merit badge and as a result chooses to invest $50 a month into the Stein Row Young Investors Fund. During the next seven years, his investments earn an average of 7%. When he graduates from high school, he will have $5400, enough to put a major dent in the cost of college.
It is important to stress that investent income is not guarenteed. These are only examples. Actual income is based on how well the investments chosen perform. With investments such as these it is possible to lose money. It is also possible to gain significantly higher return. The reason 7% is used is because it is considered a general rule of thumb when investing in the stock market for the long term.