The familiar term, ‘Savings’ is commonly associated with one’s ambitions for wealth. However, in many instances, it has overshadowed the other avenues readily available to Jamaicans to pursue and gain capital. 

Previously engulfed in economic crisis and fiscal downfall, many civilians have steered clear of delving into the financial market for fear of being upswept into monetary instability. 

Further tainting citizen trust was the sudden rise of Ponzi schemes in the early 2000s. Some imitated legitimate businesses, leaving unsuspecting victims at a loss having placed their money in offers  “guaranteeing 100% returns within weeks”.

Distraught, other citizens moved from engaging the formal banking system to those they could trust… friends, aunties, uncles and anyone else who’d be interested in forming a “partner plan”.

With an economy trying to recover and citizens anxiously clinging to their money what was left for Jamaica to do? Launch the Junior Stock Market. 

The Jamaica Stock Exchange designed the Junior Stock Market to encourage and promote investments into Jamaica’s entrepreneurial and economic developments.

 The Junior Stock Market allows investors to put capital into legitimate small and medium-sized companies while giving them the chance to raise capital, and stimulate Jamaica’s economy.

Within 5 years the JSE saw incredible leaps in investor activity and local business growth. When industry gatekeepers, Bloomberg described the local stock exchange as the “World’s Best Performing Stock Market”.  The JSE’s leaps suddenly shifted to hurdles, fast-tracking the market’s activity at newfound credit.  

Within 3 years, another publication by Bloomberg stated, “Jamaica’s spectacular stock market rally, the world’s biggest over the last five years, shows no sign of losing steam”.

Since then, the Jamaica Stock Exchange has welcomed companies to trade on its platform while allowing consumers to invest in stocks that have the potential to yield great returns as opposed to simply saving.

For those new to the idea of being an investor, including the difference between savings and investment, Financial Analyst, Romario Sterling explains in the video below.