Leslie Dingo: First we get the money, then we get the Power

In BlogX, Business by Jack Latimore

Leslie Dingo Photo: Supplied

Leslie Dingo Photo: Supplied

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“Isn’t Trading just gambling, isn’t that risky?’’ is generally the comment I receive when I tell people I trade stocks and the financial markets. Over the last 10 years, my twin brother Kelvin Dingo and I have been on a journey as Investors and Traders of the Australian Stock Market. It has given us experience and wisdom as we journeyed through all the highs and the incredibly painful lows, this is our song.

Watching the evening news in a small country town in Western Australia, the most interesting part for me was when it came to the financial report. The news presenter’s say that gold has risen $5 overnight and I as an 8-year-old boy was quickly excited of the prospect that could of made $5 overnight if I just had one piece of gold… being innocently unaware of the financial trading markets and how they actually worked. This was one of the earliest memories that I have into which why I could explain my interest into learning how to trade and invest, ‘how to make money and quickly’, because as an indigenous child like many others, we had next to nothing.

Fast forward 10 years and we are now young men, with a steady job and unconsciously looking for our purpose in life instead of just living. With some surplus cash we started researching more and more ways to make our money work for us. Property, savings account and shares… it was the share market that re-ignited that spark inside us as the path forwards to enable us to live our lives on our terms and achieve our financial goals.

We would spend hours/days researching stocks and learning as much as we could. A part of this learning process was also learning we were incredibly impatient, throwing money into the market at stock we didn’t even have a clue about… and in the long run ended up losing money. You quickly learn and analyse the decisions you make in life when you get the opposite or undesired outcome. We got to one point where we nearly lost everything and I mean years and years of hard work disappeared. It was hard… hard getting up and going to a job that we hated, the long hours and weeks away from home in the mining industry was not where we wanted to be, but it was through this pain and loss that we developed to where we are today.

When you have some crushing losses in the markets, you can choose to give up? Or at the very least learn from them, and that’s what we did. 12 months after losing close to $250,000 between Kelvin and I, we made all those losses back and some. We felt great, validated that we were on the right path, testament to our strength of not giving up and our continual learning and motto of “there is no win or lose in trading and investment, only win or learn”.

Few more years down the track, we left our comfortable and secure jobs in pursuit of doing trading full time. Whilst we have had success, we are still on a continual path of learning and improving our trading and investment.

For all the success I have had, it doesn’t overshadow the fact that our people are still poor, welfare dependent (both financially and mentally). I would hope that my brother and I we can lead the charge in Indigenous traders and investors, to give our people the financial capacity to uplift our people and bring a new era of social and economic prosperity for our people. I have had to erase from my mind the mentality of that little poor Yamatji kid waiting for a hand out in life, waiting for the next pension week. I was tired of being poor, I was tired of seeing all our people poor. I don’t care for one second about comments of “life’s not about money, money is the devil, you don’t need money to be happy” … go and say to a poor homeless Yamatji man and tell him that. Money is just a commodity, a commodity that is exchanged for food, for shelter, for time. It’s no different to our people trading with the neighbouring tribes, some spears, some fish or some skins, back in a time when we lived life on our terms, life with purpose.

I’m sure this is from some mobster godfather like movie, but it rings true when coming to changing Indigenous issues and being on a level field in mainstream Australia.

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