After an eon, I’ve  finally found the time to attend COL Financial Group’s  ‘Investing in the Stock Market Today‘ seminar which was led by Aya Laraya, the man behind PESOS AND SENSE – a weekend show in GMANews TV where he talks about personal finance and investments in a simplified and more doable sense. The show covers a wide range of topics like different investment vehicles such as stocks and mutual funds, which would help Filipinos get out of the so-called ‘rat-race’.


Aya with an MBA at University of Western Australia has been a stockbroker since 1989. He’d seen the bull and the real bear market.  With such skill and experience,  I believe he’s one of the best financial educator in the Philippines. So, seeing him speak live in a FREE seminar is a real treat.

The 2-hour seminar covers all the important things you need to know on investing in the Philippine Stock Market. Why and why not you should invest in stocks? How to pick good stocks? Methods of Investing; and Getting started with online trading.

Why Invest?

Most Filipinos do not know how and where to invest their money.  As for a regular employee like me, who works at least 8 hours a day, I would struggle to make ends meet until the next payday. When payday comes, I’d spend the money on bills, food, rent, pleasure etc..until there’s almost nothing left to spend for the week. So I would ask myself, where did my money go? And wait for the next payday again, then the same story goes… it goes on and on and on.  I know this could go on forever. I’ve seen grannies still working hard for money like me. At their age, they should’ve been enjoying their twilight years, like having a vacation or doing something else. Sadly, some are still working their ass off.  So, am I  gonna be like this all my life? Who wants to work in an 8-5 job all his life and live just enough. No one. Right? Everyone wants a brighter future with less financial woes and worries.

So a year ago I thought, I should stop wondering where my money goes. I should be in-control of my money rather than money in-control of me. I SHOULD INVEST NOW or WITHER.

Stocks? Why Not?

Where do I spend my money?  Where do you spend your money? Everyone pays utilities every month. When you go out, where do we usually eat? Where do you shop? Where do you buy groceries? When you’re at home, what TV show do you watch? Where do you put your savings? Obviously, we, the consumers are one of the reasons why big businesses become a real success. Why? Because we buy their products. We all shop at SM, we all eat Chicken joy, we pay water bill, MERALCO and PLDT every month, we watch GMA  and ABS-CBN everyday, and we put our savings and remittances on BPI or BDO. These are just some of the biggest , established  and financially sound companies in the Philippines – the BLUE CHIPS as they call it. These companies are publicly listed in the stock market and have good reputations. Since you are spending on these businesses, why not partner with Henry Sy or Tony Tan Caktiong or Manny Pangilinan or Gokongwei? I am not kidding. You don’t have to be a miilionaire to partner with them. “The stock market is the place where you can invest in other peoples’ publicly listed companies so you could participate in its growth through Price Appreciation and Dividends”

When you buy stocks you become a shareholder of that company and when the company’s market price goes up,  the value of your shares goes up too…you also get to have a part of company’s earnings every year depending on the number of shares you have.

Jeremy J. Siegel’s Stocks for the Long Run says, “History has proven that investing in quality stocks can provide greater returns than most instruments; giving a good run over inflation”

How to Pick Good Stocks?

According to Aya, to pick good stocks you need to look at the business. “Does it make money? “

Some invest in mining even if they know nothing about it. How would you know if the mining’s doing well if you don’t actually see what’s going on? How would you know if they’re still operating or not?

“You have to know the business” “What you don’t know you don’t  touch ”

Buy stocks you like best – the one you believe that would still be worth for the next 20 years.

“Sa tingin nyo ba titigil na kayo kumain ng chickenjoy in 5 years?” “Hindi pa diba?” Aya says which made people laugh.

Methods of Investing

There are different methods of investing in the stock market. You can either Trade by Trend Timing or Value Investing or Buy & Hold using peso cost averaging strategy.

Trading is  “Buying when prices are lucratively below fair value; and selling when prices become expensive” But this requires a lot of monitoring. You need to watch the market from 930am to 12 noon. And 130 pm to 330pm. Not everyone has the time to do that and not all people have that much money to buy stocks instantly. Also, this is riskier. You can make a lot of money in trading but you can lose as much too.

So, COL  Financial Group Inc (formerly CitisecOnline) – the leading and fastest-growing online stockbrokerage firm in the Philippine Stock Exchange, introduced the Easy Investment Program which “gives investors a simple and more convenient way of investing in the stock market regardless of age, income or experience using cost averaging.”

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COL defined Cost Averaging as a personal wealth building strategy that involves investing a fixed amount of money into your favorite stocks at regular intervals over a period of time.


Let’s say you are earning 20k a month and you have regularly invested 5,000 on one of these quality stocks,like  BDO for example. In 5 years, your total investment would be 300,000. If you have invested in 2008, looking at the numbers in the chart above, how much should you have earned by now?

Not that bad, right? I mean not at all!

Getting Started

For as low as Php5,000 you can open an account with COL Financial and get started in building a brighter future for you and your family. If you want to know more about investing in the stock market or you want to attend a FREE seminar, you can log on to  or email them at

You can also read “My Maid Invests in the Stock Market, and Why You Should Too” by Bro. Bo Sanchez. He explained investing in the stock market like ABC. Go check it out. It’s available in all leading bookstores nationwide.

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You can also download the free e-book here

Investing is like planting a seed, you water it, you consistently take care of it until it grows and bears a fruit. It’s not easy setting aside 3-5k a month. But if you have a dream and you want to make it happen, nothing is impossible.