Using his financial education to help others prosper

Seatla Ratshosa. Photo: Supplied

Seatla Ratshosa. Photo: Supplied

Published Jun 16, 2024


Having notched up 13 years of experience in economics, accounting, and investment banking, Seatla Ratshosa is sharing his knowledge with others to help them get a financial education.

The 39-year-old has authored a book titled “Masheleng”, and runs a podcast in efforts to educate others about finance.

Ratshosa told Business Report: “The primary drive behind writing my book and starting the podcast was to share my knowledge and experiences in finance with a broader audience. Through my career, I have encountered many individuals and business owners who struggle with financial management. I realised there was a significant need for accessible, practical advice that could help people navigate their financial challenges. My book and podcast aim to demystify financial concepts and provide actionable strategies which anyone can implement to achieve financial stability and success.”

In his book, “Masheleng”, Ratshosa dives into the untold truth about money, challenging long-held beliefs and shedding light on the secrets of wealth creation.

Through insightful observation, Ratshosa unravels the hidden lessons in communities: the unspoken hostility towards wealth creation and the avoidance of vital money conversations within families.

He said that he exposes the disadvantages this taboo has placed upon black communities, hindering the prospect of generational wealth.

His podcast, also titled "Masheleng", discusses a wide range of topics, including financial management, sales, entrepreneurship, and the latest trends in the economy.

With many in the country fighting the cost-of-living crisis spurred on by persistent inflation, he told Business Report that it is crucial to adopt proactive financial strategies.

Ratshosa recommended the below tips that consumers can follow to help alleviate the financial stress that some may be facing:

1. Create a detailed budget: Track your income and expenses meticulously to identify areas where you can cut costs.

2. Create additional sources of income: Inflation can be very difficult to control, more especially if caused by external factors. Creating other sources of income can help cushion you in times of inflation so you don’t have to compromise on cutting down on essentials.

3. Build an emergency fund: Aim to save at least three to six months’ worth of living expenses to cushion against financial shocks.

4. Avoid high-interest debt: Try to pay off high-interest debt as quickly as possible and avoid accumulating new debt.

5. Invest wisely: Look for investment opportunities that can provide returns that outpace inflation, such as equities or inflation-protected securities.

In addition to expenses currently faced by South Africans, interest rates in the country are at a 14-year high, and Ratshosa said that the repo rate is a critical tool for the South African Reserve Bank (SARB) to control inflation.

“By raising the repo rate, the SARB makes borrowing more expensive, which can reduce consumer spending and business investment, thereby slowing down inflation. However, this also means higher costs for consumers, particularly those with variable-rate debt, and can dampen economic growth in the short term,” he said.

“While this policy is effective in curbing inflation, it is a delicate balancing act. The goal is to manage inflation without causing undue harm to economic growth and consumer spending. The impact of economic changes, such as fluctuations in interest rates, often disproportionately affects individuals at the lower end of the earning spectrum. One major contributing factor is the pervasive lack of financial literacy,” Ratshosa further said.

“Many people in this group do not fully understand the implications of changes in interest rates on their loans, savings, and overall financial health. This knowledge gap makes it challenging for them to make informed decisions and adapt to the changing economic landscape effectively. Without the financial clout and expertise, these individuals are generally not in a position to negotiate favourable rates with banks. Unlike the financial elite, who often have the leverage and resources to secure better terms and lower interest rates, many lower-income earners find themselves paying higher rates on loans and earning less on their savings. This leaves them holding the shorter end of the stick, further exacerbating financial inequities,” Ratshosa further said.

“To address these issues, it is crucial to prioritise financial education and make resources accessible to everyone, regardless of their income level. Equipping people with the knowledge and skills to understand and manage their finances will empower them to make better choices, negotiate fair terms, and ultimately enhance their financial well-being,” he said.