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Investing in Cannabis and Crypto ft. Courtney Richardson – PB190

In this P&B episode, Rich is chatting with Courtney Richardson, the founder of The Ivy investor. Courtney is a current attorney and former stockbroker and investment advisor with fifteen years of experience in the financial services industry. 

She’s a money nerd with degrees on degrees and a bank of knowledge that had Rich thinking about new ways to invest that he’s still thinking about today.

During his chat with Courtney, they discuss investing in cannabis and crypto and you’ll also hear about her journey into personal finance while juggling her day job.

Investing in Cannabis & Crypto ft. Courtney Richardson - PB190

“The way you mitigate risk is that you become educated. You become an educated investor. That’s the best way to mitigate risk.” – Courtney Richardson

Rich: Hey, what’s good. This is Rich. And you're listening in to Paychecks and Balances where the overachievers of the world unite. But seriously, this is a podcast about the intersection of work, money, and life. So whether it's getting a new job, getting into investing, or simply trying to get it all together. We're talking about it.

And before getting into today's show quick update that if you're looking to book speakers or a live podcast event for your company or employee resource group, be sure to visit paybal.co/workwithrich, because a lot of people don't know that I do live cast sessions on personal finance, on careers for companies, and for employee resource groups.

And that's something I've been doing behind the scenes for months now. And people have asked me why I don't mention it on the podcast. So if you are looking for a speaker, or you are looking for someone to come in and do an event around generational wealth, personal finance, how to progress in your career, I am available for that.

So again, that's paybal.co/workwithrich. And also if you're thinking about kicking off a career move for yourself, or you've got interviews coming up, or you just need someone to tell you what you already know, so you can go out there and do it definitely hit me up. You'll visit that same page paybal.co/workwithrich now and let's work together.

On today's show, I'm chatting with the founder of the Ivy investor, a money nerd with degrees on degrees and a bank of knowledge that had me thinking about new ways to invest that I'm still thinking about today.

I'm talking to Courtney Richardson and this episode is way overdue. We first started talking about her coming on the podcast probably three years ago. And joke a little bit about that during the episode today. And on last week's episode, if you didn't check it out, I talked with CFL player, Courtney Steven, about crypto and this week I'm talking to Courtney Richardson about investing in cannabis and crypto.

And we'll also hear about her journey into personal finance while juggling the day job. And since crypto is also just a very bro place, you've probably heard me say that on the podcast. If you've listened to recently, I asked her about her experience navigating this relatively homogenous space and really appreciated the candidness in her answer.

So here's my conversation with Courtney and I hope you enjoy.
Courtney welcome to the podcast.

Courtney: Thank you for having me. I'm really excited to be here. I think we've talked about this a couple of good times about before we actually made it. Yeah,

Rich: a couple of good times. We're literally talking years at this point, and it's awesome to finally have you on the podcast.

And I know a couple of years ago, I noticed you were talking a lot more about cannabis investing. At least what I saw, we were having a whole conversation about how, if you're in the mix, you see things versus like, if you just casually see something like your dogs go and you might not have any idea what it is.

My mom has no idea. Well crypto or any of that stuff is, but she's probably, if I said Dodge corner dose, once you probably know what I was talking about. So for the PMB family, cause I did say a little bit in the intro about your background, but for the PNB family, tell them a little bit about yourself and in particular, how you ended up starting the investor back in 2014,

Courtney: everything looks like it was so well planned.

Initially, like from kind of looking behind I'm like, I had no idea what I was doing. Um, so I graduated from undergrad in 2003. So I've been in financial services for whew, almost 20 years. Don't tell people that though. I don't look a day over five. Um, but I started in the financial services industry, graduated with a BA in philosophy.

And, um, I didn't have a job. I was going to go straight to law school. That was my like dream. I hope, whatever. And then I was so burnt out from the philosophy degree. Um, I was just like, I need some time and it appears like, yeah. Philosophy.

Rich: So that reading, I got shook, I took a philosophy one or something and thought it was going to be a cakewalk hardest course I ever took in my

Courtney: life.

When you you're reading that much or writing that much, you're thinking that much. It was a lot. So I was like, I need some time off my parents. Like, you need a job. I was like, Oh, so, so I ended up, I don't even know I had like my resume on monster and I got picked up by a financial services firm and they were like, Hey, you want me to financial advisor?

And I'm like, Ooh, look at all my options. I don't have any so sure. I got a series seven. Got it. Uh, which is a general securities license. I got a series 66, which allows me well at the time, allowed me to charge people for my financial advice. And then I had a life accident, health license, which allows me to sell a life insurance, health insurance, long-term disability long-term care.

And so that's how I started out with my career and I hated it. I hated it. I can't even express to you how much I hated it.

Rich: So I don't want to trigger you, but everyone has their reasons for why they hated

Courtney: it. So I was a 21 year old making a hundred dials a day in a cubicle when all of my friends were out doing other fun things.

One two, I made $18,000 a year in 2003. Oh,

Rich: my chest just

Courtney: got tight. It should. My dad kind of, and I mean, shout out to my parents. My parents were just amazing. So my dad was like, listen, I got you. You don't have to struggle. I will help you pay your ass. Cause I had a roommate. He was like, I'll help you pay your rent until you get back together.

So I ended up working for Sam's club, which actually at the time is my first time I purchased the stock. I did it through their employee stock purchase plan because I couldn't afford to purchase that as a financial advisor. Hmm. Funny. So did that, um, ended up going, uh, getting into banking from banking. I was recruited to Merrill Lynch.

So at Merrill I did 401k service. I did high net worth advising. And now, like, this is just think of it. This is the heyday of the market. So we are going out every week for steak dinners, with wine. I learned at the time, like I was a very young 20 something. And I was still eating my meat. Well done. I'm learning very quickly.

Rich: Oh no, no honey, or whatever that meme says, what is you

Courtney: doing? Exactly. So I learned very quickly how to, um, act in those places, which was amazing because it really accelerated my personal growth in these places. I was promoted to assistant vice president as like a young 20 something. And then like life starts to fall apart because Marcus started to fall apart.

I was laid off in 2009 and I was actually planning to go to law school. So it wasn't like, Oh, I'm laid off. What should I do? I was like, Oh, I was going to go to law school. Part-time anyway, so this first out, well, once a law school did oil and gas work, which is basically title works. Let's just think about like real estate work on steroids.

We, it was, it was interesting. Learned a lot. I had a lot of my friends calling me in 2014. Like all of my friends, you know, who kind of were in their careers and kind of starting to make that first transition out. They were rolling over 401ks or trying to cash them out. They were buying homes, doing all the things.

And I was getting like, my phone started to ring off the hook and I was like in big law, you have to bill your time. So I was billing like every, you know, Sixth of an hour. Um, every, and I was just like every single time I was like, yo, I got bill y'all. I can't talk to you. And one of the things that I noticed is that people didn't have that foundation.

They needed to be able to make good rational decisions. So they, you know, and just think of it this way. I mean, when you get your 401k plan or whatever plan you get. You get your 401k, you get your health benefits or dental, and they're like here, and here's your cubicle. And you got, and you know, and at some point your training will come or not, and you're left to your own devices.

Rich: I liked that. I liked that. And it's real though, because I'm thinking about what I did with my first 401k, which was nothing I didn't contribute to it. I didn't, it just sat there. I left the job. I like remembered it. Years later, like cast it out, just. Not just like pure foolishness and nonsense. Cause I had no idea what I was doing and that's the experience for a lot of people.

Courtney: That's the common like that is the common experience. So as we were talking through these conversations and I was providing advice, I was like, wait a second. You don't fully even understand what I'm talking about. And they were like, no, I don't. And I was like, okay, well let's back up. And I was like, I don't have time to get you up to speed for us to have an intelligent conversation about options.

So why don't we do this? I'm going to write a blog because I was kind of like a frustrated writer, like info as a philosophy major. Like I right. It was a help for me and a help for them. And that was 2014 and that's how I, the investor was started. So I think it's really cool that as I tell the story about how the IB investors started, it was really because of my friends.

That's really yeah. How it started. So they were like, Hey, you know, we need you, I need you. And it, it worked out. So I've been educating since then. And in the interim, in terms of education, I got a additional degree. I got an LLM in taxation and it's called a master of laws. So it did that. So I have the real estate experience.

I have the financial experience with the stock market and then, you know, I'm a law person. So cannabis kind of comes into that because cannabis is. Driven by the law, as we kind of all know, because, you know, driving white, black, you know, uh, getting locked up because you're black and you have weed. Um, there's so many different aspects, you know, or Brown because of weed.

There's so many different aspects of that experience that are based in the law. Um, so I'm just scenario and I love it, but I can also make help make, have, make myself money from being a nerd, but also inform other people on how to use that knowledge to make money too. Interesting.

Rich: So for the cannabis stuff specifically, how did you get interested?

Because you mentioned like the legal part of it. And so when I think legal, well, I guess there's, there's multiple sides to law and there's probably a lot of misconceptions that I have in my own head, but I think. Risk aversion. Now on the other side, I understand that there's a lot of opportunity and it hints there's a whole industry, but I think about like some of these spaces, the money management, like doing things the right way.

And so we understand it's a part of it, but it's not something that's like, emphasize like get out there and put that risk to use. Like, that's not a thing. So considering everything else, like why, and I understand being a money nerd, but like still, but like why that w given that there's so many other things out there that you could have gotten into or were into our, into

Courtney: for that matter.

So it's my audience. My audience did it. Um, I want to say in like 2016, beginning in 2017, people started asking me about cannabis. And I was like, okay, you smoke it. I don't know. That's not what I do, but that's what people do. And they were like, yeah, I want to invest in it. And I was like, okay. I mean, rock out if that's what you want to do, it's not legal.

So. Alright. And they were like, no, no, no, no, you don't understand. I'm like, but, but I do. It's not legal though, but again, this is like right after Colorado. So Colorado became like the biggest state to go legal legalized adult use marijuana in 2012 and then Washington did too. Right. So people are seeing it like guilt, but don't you see that over there?

I'm like, it's still not legal though. So many people reached out to me about it. I was like, okay, let me, hold on. Just let me look to see what's going on. And then when I looked, I was like, Oh, this is, this is fascinating. So some of the things that I learned is that you really want, when you're looking at an industry, that's kind of.

Blooming or blossoming. You want to get it in the beginning, but one of the things, the way you talk about risks, the way you mitigate risk is that you become educated. And you become an educated investor. That's the best way to mitigate risk. Now it doesn't completely remove risk out of the equation because these new industries, conceptually always have risks and we can even look back to the internet.

So I don't know. Um, you know, we're about the same age. So back in the day when the internet, like the, I don't want to say the admin of the internet, but you had like pets.com and then you had amazon.com. One of them doesn't exist anymore. And the other one's of behemoths. So the same thing with cannabis, the same thing.

And we'll talk about this later. Same thing with cryptocurrency. Like at some point, these things are going to be here. The internet is going to be here. Cannabis is going to be here. Cryptocurrency is going to be here. It's just a function of what's going to be here to stay. What has that, that stickiness, that longevity and what is kind of fleeting and flying by night and the.

And the answer is, I don't know, but you try to be as educated as you can about it. And then you also, you know, put a portion of your investment portfolio into it. So I have like a 60, 20, I mean, excuse me, an 80 20 rule. So I say, okay, 80% of my stuff is in like regular Banella every year kind of plain stuff funds

Rich: the boring stuff.


Courtney: Portfolio is not going to get me excited. I mean, although every so often it does, but it's also not going to end me for all intents purposes. And you know, this is just generalization going to end me in the poor house. If something goes terribly wrong. So that's kind of that my 80% my vanilla portfolio, but then we have like the 20% for the razzle-dazzle.

So that's my crypto, that's my cannabis. That's all the fun things that are going on that I'm interested in that really do have the potential to go somewhere, but they also have the potential to go nowhere and actually less than nowhere.

Rich: Yeah. With great risk comes. Great reward. How did you land on the, on the 80 20 for yourself?

Because I'm probably like for me right now, I'm probably like 95 five,

Courtney: honestly. A's funny is, is that I got it from being an advisor so that 80 is that boring stuff, but 20% could be anything that you want, anything that you're interested in. And when I tell people about what they should be investing in, it's like what, you know, like, and trust, that's a good basis to start.

That's not necessarily everything, you know, like can trust do you invest in maybe not the best idea, but then like what you see other people being interested in, which your kids are bugging you about. And then also I have innovation. Like, that's kind of like, what's the next wave. So those are the things that I think investors should be looking at in terms of their buckets.

So you have your vanilla stuff, whatever that vanilla is for you. And then you have the 20% which could be crypto. It could be anything that's interesting to you, but then you also have an aspect of that 20% that's cash. So you can take advantage of really? Yeah. Quote, fun opportunities in the market.

Rich: So eventually I want to get to the 80 20, I'm gonna keep rocking with this 95 five.

It is 96, four, or whatever I'm doing right now. But the other thing with this though, is because people may be interested in crypto. They may also be interested in getting on like a public, which I think I saw you got up on there recently. I love that app. And then they're getting on these various platforms and I found myself doing this, which is why I'm ready to go back to just like the boring, old investing on the traditional side where I'm like, all right now, um, I was spending, I feel like I'm spending a lot more time.

Looking at market stuff, because I'm doing more of this kind of like day to day now, whereas before when it was set it and forget it, I didn't care anything about the market moving up and down. Like all of that stuff in the news was nothing to me. Whereas like now I'm spending a lot more time with it. So there's that constraint.

The other thing is if somebody is trying to do both these things at once, like they might really struggle. So it, it may be best. Like if you are getting started to like pick one thing first, all right. Like crypto is what you want to learn. Young Jedi master crypto, or at least get to a good spot and then start bringing these other investments in, because me trying to like, Oh, you know, now I'm on the Voyager app.

Now I'm on Coinbase. Now I'm doing this. I was like, yeah, I can't be doing this is not the lifestyle that I want. In how I'm looking at my investments. And that's what told me it was

Courtney: a problem. Focus is key. It's you just focus like you work on one thing and you master it and then you may never want to move on to something else.

But I think it's really, especially when you're getting so much new information. So crypto is kind of completely like another world. You're just, I mean, between the NFTs and the . So. T NFTs are non, non fungible tokens, which are, you know, they're just non fungible tokens. We can talk about what more that is.

And then you also have, um, decentralized finance or defy. I mean, you have so many things in the crypto space. That's beyond cryptocurrency. You could be like waiting in the crypto waters and like drowning in crypto. Same thing with marijuana. There are so many things though on, you know, you could be just drowning in information.

So I think it's just allowing yourself the time to get up to speed. It's like learning a new language. I mean, and you kind of allow yourself that time and then every, so often you get more information or you might find something new. And I feel like crypto is like an onion, like every month around pulling back a layer to go wait a second.

Rich: Yeah. It's been like, and even just in a few weeks, I'm like, I'm telling people stuff, like I've been doing this for years and I'm like, let me stop acting like, I know what it is. It's been like three weeks, but it feels like it's been months with all like the, uh, the, uh, emotion in the, in the, in the market.

I did want to ask, cause I, I want to talk about crypto, but on the, on the cannabis side. So someone hears this and they're like, Ooh, like I didn't even think about this. People have their preconceived notions about what investing in that is, is, or how scary it is. Isn't. So what do you find that people kind of get wrong or, or what the common misconceptions are when it comes to cannabis investing specifically?

Courtney: Specifically, I think they find a love for penny stocks. It's like the cheaper, the better. And there's like, I tell people all the time pitting stocks are like the manager's special at the supermarket.

Rich: Um, Oh, not that reg tag me.

Courtney: No facts. Red tag me. It could be fine today, but you leave it in the refrigerator for one second too long, you know what happens?

And that's exactly what penny stocks are like nine, like nine times out of 10 is going to go bad. And then in that one off shoot or one opportunity that goes, well, it's like, everybody's talking to that person, like they're a hero and they're going to re replicate this wonderful, dramatic success. And that's usually not the case.

That's the outlier. So, I mean, in cannabis, cannabis is such a diverse industry that there are so many things that you can get into without like jumping into penny stocks. You have the illegality of cannabis. Is that a word? I think that's a word. It causes a problem with the cannabis space. So in Canada, so Canada, um, had there's two sides of cannabis.

Generally there's more sides, but we'll just go with this for now. So you have medicinal cannabis and then you have adult use or what's called recreational, which I really don't like the connotation. So I just say, you know, adult use or responsible use or whatever you want to call it just. Not recreational.

And the only

Rich: difference is whether or not you have the prescription card, right? Correct.

Courtney: And Canada, they started the medicinal program in 2001. And then in 2018 is when they went to a fully functional adult use program in Canada. They are completely illegal. So that's one thing. And the United States you have, I believe it's like 37 States.

I have to look again, um, that have some sort of medicinal use program. And I think we're at maybe 14 States that have adult use program, but at no point has the federal government said, yeah, this is okay. There's Canadian companies that are traded in the United States. Um, they're Canadian functioning companies, but they have, um, they are traded on the New York stock exchange or the NASDAQ there's really stringent rules to be traded on the New York stock exchange and the NASDAQ.

So you have kind of, you have you've provided yourself or at least disclosure wise provided student New York stock exchange or the NASDAQ that you're qualified to be there. So there's that, uh, level of protection? Not a whole bunch. Yeah. Cause they do get to be listed all the time. And a few companies in the cannabis base have gotten de listed.

How do you get to listed though? If your share price falls below a dollar for a certain period of time, um, there's a couple of different things that can happen, but usually about share price.

Rich: So you're not on the, like what the hell

Courtney: you go to like what's called the over the counter markets or the pink sheets, but it's kinda like the kiss of death.

Once you get off the, the major to soccer changes, the neuro-psych change to the NASDAQ you're done. You're done. You just might as well close your doors about the bankruptcy. So it's a really bad thing to happen, but it does happen. So there's a level of, I don't want to say security because I don't want to say that at all, but there's a level of, of better of better quality stuff on the New York stock exchange.

But, but not always. So it's not going to be, it's not the, it's not a panacea. It's not kind of the complete answer to everything, but it does help. Uh, so you have those companies that are traded the Canadian company trading in United States. Then you have the United States companies that cannot be trading in the United States on a New York stock exchange or the NASDAQ, even if they meet the criteria because the New York stock exchange and the NASDAQ have rules that saying, listen, you cannot be traded on our platform.

If you engage in illegal business. And like I said, marijuana is still illegal. So they had to go to Canada, the Toronto stock exchange, which is, I guess, the kin to the New York stock exchange. But it's not as active as New York stock exchange, but that's kind of like their major stock exchange in Canada.

But the Toronto stock exchange has the same exact issue. So they went to the Canadian securities exchange where it was kind of like. Bring us all your tire, your poor, your huddled masses. We'll take you. So a lot of the American companies are now trading in Canada on the Canadians security exists change the way you can get to them.

And the United States is on the over-the-counter market. So. Which is, like I said, it's, it's not the best place because it's not very liquid. It's not very transplant.

Rich: Where do you find these markets that are like, Hamsterdam in some hood area where you don't want to find them where it's nice and seedy.

How do you find these places? Where's the,

Courtney: so the ice cream. So you you'll find them sometimes, um, like a company. Like Merrill Lynch will allow you to buy it. And, you know, fidelity, I think fidelity, there's a couple of different, um, companies, um, in terms of brokerages that will allow you to purchase some of these companies, even though they're not on the major changes, but they do have some requirements.

Like you have to have a certain amount of money in your account. You have to kind of basically verify the transaction and Merrill Lynch. At one point I had to have a special card. I had to push it to give me a new number to make sure that like I was me and I wasn't just some random person getting to my account.

It's a disaster. So it is, it can be very painful to do. But it's very possible. So you have, like, you have United States stuff, you have the Canadian stuff, but then you also have in the United States companies that are engaged in some sort of the cannabis business, but not necessarily touching the plant.

We have, um, Scotts Miracle-Gro they have a hydroponic line. So hydroponics and cannabis is a really big deal. You have IPR, which is a, an innovative industrial properties is see cannabis REIT. They actually rent. Pro, um, they rent space to cannabis companies. So they have, and it's also a REIT. So their dividends pretty decent for a cannabis for a newer Reed.

Also you have, you have companies that are involved like alcohol companies. So we always have that conversation about the sin stocks. So alcohol companies, tobacco companies, they all have a lot of money and they, a lot of people are like, well, what's going to happen to tobacco and alcohol. If cannabis is legalized, Nothing.

And they took the position, the same thing, like, Hey, you know, nothing's really, it could reduce our market share. It could reduce how much we actually have consumers consuming our things, but we have a lot of cash, these cannabis companies don't. So if you can't beat them, you join them. So that's exactly what happened.

So a lot of the tobacco companies. Um, you know, I will say Philip Morris Altria you to have the company that does Corona. There's so many companies, they do spec of the Baca has so many different companies in the tobacco and alcohol space that are involved in cannabis because they have the money and they can kind of, you know, join forces.


Rich: crazy thinking about the realm of possibilities. And I'm thinking about a friend who I know is he's, he's worked in tobacco, he's worked in alcohol. He's probably going to end up working in whatever else becomes legal, where it's, it's almost like the vices industry coming together. But I would think of that as in terms of like alcohol cigarettes stuff like miracle girl.

It's so freaking obvious. Like I'm annoyed that I wouldn't think of something like that. So even if someone doesn't want to invest specifically in cannabis, you can get creative and go a layer deeper or two layers deeper and come to think about it. You could do that with everything. It's actually the first time I'm thinking about it this way.

So that's thank you very much for instilling

Courtney: such a thought. It's called picks and shovels. That's what this side of investing is called. If you understand the ecosystem or how cannabis works or how cannabis grows, you're going to see that, Hey, you need fertilizer. Hey, if you're going to, you're going to be growing inside.

You're probably gonna want to do hydroponics as opposed to soil, and who's doing that. And then also as we get more advanced into the cannabis world and we're doing wools extractions, There's companies that have been doing oil extraction from plants for years. And they're now in the cannabis space. All they did was take their talents from what they've been doing for years and took it to cannabis.

And those are companies that I'm usually very interested in because it's like, Oh, you really knew what you were doing over there. And now you've just taken your talent somewhere else. But those are all the picks and shovel plays that really work out for a lot of people who are like, Hey, I'm interested in the space.

I'm a little nervous about jumping in, but where else can I do? Or where else can I go? So even in pharmaceuticals, there's pharmaceutical companies that are engaged in cannabis research and production. There's one like major, major one, which is a British company, but there's a couple of them that are kind of in the R and D phases.

So you have that, then you have the companies that do tobacco companies that do alcohol. There's so many things that they, you can kind of look in as an investor to say, Hey, I'm interested in it. I may want some exposure. I want a little bit more exposure than say a vice ETF. And these are the companies that you're going to look into.

So they have a whole nother line of business. Like they sell Corona, whatever they do, but then they also have this, this experience with, um, with cannabis. So those are the companies that look at, um, Oh, it's constellation brands.

Rich: Yes. And the friend I'm thinking of, he has worked for, I feel like he's, he's worked for all of these.

I think I'm, I'm really most fascinated by just like how, how deep it can go in terms of how you look at all of these various companies. Now, is there any place that you recommend? So let's say, let's say someone's like, I don't want to. Do the, the, I just to go after the big name companies where I'm coming in late, the price is already high and I'm buying high and I'm, and I'm selling low.

Are there places that people can look to get a sense of? Maybe not just like the top company, but Hey, like here are all of the other things that are part of the supply chain that you also need to be thinking about.

Courtney: Google is like my best friend when it comes to like learning about these things. I'm like companies involved in the cannabis industry.

And like, they'll pop up a whole bunch. Now you have to do your research. I mean, I do have a canvas class that I teach. Um, and I teach it probably I haven't taught at once last year. I need to teach it some more because this stuff changes so often, like they're talking about, re-introducing a cannabis bill, that's going to change the game.

So everybody's like, Oh my gosh, everybody in the industry is very excited. We don't know where it's going to go. But again, you know, if you look stuff up on Google, it kind of opens up the door and you're going to have to do that research, but it's there. Um, and the same thing in the crypto space too, you know, crypto takes a lot of energy.

It takes a lot of, um, you know, computer power. It also takes, you know, microchips or processors and all those other things that make crypto work. And that's the same opportunities. Like you may not need a car. You may not want to be doing cryptocurrency directly, but you have the opportunity to, to get into the space or be exposed to the space and other companies.

Rich: Now you mentioned crypto and I'm sure people are thinking, they're like, Aw man, there's cannabis, but it's not just blatantly obvious as just cannabis. There are these ingredients and products and all of these other things that people can invest in. And then there's this world of crypto that we're in right now.

And, uh, I did have someone on recently, another Courtney and we talked a little bit about the crypto space and blockchains and why that's so hot right now. And I'm thinking. So somebody gets to the point where that they want to jump into things like they've made a decision. Like this is a route that I want to go.

This is the one thing. So going to what we were saying earlier, as opposed to trying to get into 80 million different investments, they want to get into crypto specifically. Like what's the general, like starting point for someone who doesn't know any better. Who's like, look, I got, let's just say $500 set aside.

I want to start. Playing around and crypto I'm okay. Losing this money. Cause that's the important part. I'm okay. Losing this money that I'm ready to put in there. I know there's some Ethereum. I know there's some, this, and we're not going to define every single thing because there are websites in Google for that.

But just like, as far as people here who are like, yo, I want to come up. I want to get in the freaking game. I got a little bit of money. What the hell do I do?

Courtney: So I think the biggest thing is that you have to kind of understand the space and I would start with the currencies or cryptocurrencies. So Bitcoin is like the gold standard.

That's the gold standard. And then you have everything else which are considered all coins, but then in the alt coins you have like JV and then you have like minor league kind of like right under like the majors.

Rich: Oh, so JV is in late junior varsity. Yes. Got you. Cool. Got

Courtney: it. Really, really like really good, uh, currency that are, that are viable.

And then you have some that are just like, dude, those just not viable. And a lot of people are like, well, Courtney is, did really well. Yeah, it did. That doesn't mean it's a viable coin. So the biggest thing that I want people to look at when they're looking into crypto is I think everybody should have some Bitcoin I'm starting

Rich: my dollar cost averaging this week.

I'm just going to DCA into it. Just repeatedly not try to play. I found myself trying to play at the time, the market game with this. And I, I'm not even, I'm like just, just,

Courtney: and you have to, and that's another good point about kind of timing the market, like timing. The crypto market is. Even very different.

So remember with your, with the stock market, you have your stock market hours, not always make it relevant, relevant, or relative to the five heartbeats with big red. When he's like my office hours are from nine to five and he's like holding the guy over the rail. I mean, not so dramatic, but the, the stock market's open from nine 30 to four.

So you have a relatively small period of time where you're active. People are actively trading. Like, of course there's after hours trading, but it's not so active. It's kind of like Walmart. When you go to Walmart after hours, the meat counter isn't open or the seafood counters open, like you can get the meats, like the asker Meyer in the package, but you're not going to get that fresh, you know, deli meat.

Like, that's just how it goes. Yeah. You weren't getting that ribeye. Exactly. You're not getting, you're not getting the good stuff whatever's out is what you're going to get. And that's the same thing. That's pretty much, you know, in the after hours market, but with crypto you're 24 seven. So you're really kind of all over the place.

So in the middle of the night, sometimes I've seen crypto go like down really, really low, and I'm like, What is going on. And then sometimes I see overly high, like what is going on? And I was like, you know what, I'm just, I'm going to put my phone down. I'm going to put my Coinbase away. My Binance away, like even timing the market is just so much harder to do it because there's so many moving parts.

It's so it's still not necessarily regulated like the stock market is. So it's just like, if you want to get in, then get in and dollar cost average. Like I put in a certain, every two weeks I put in a certain amount of, and this is not investment advice. Not telling me yes. Entertainment purposes, only people.

I put a certain amount in actually less so in Bitcoin, but actually. Because like my, my crypto of choice, it seems to be the most applicable to kind of taking the world to the next level. The Arrium actually has a smart contracts. Smart contracts are smart contracts. So. I mean, it basically allows you to exchange without a middleman.

That makes sense. So for example, smart shot tracks will allow people at some point to basically buy real estate without, as adding a real estate agent involved. Basically just you kind of going through the motions with another party and you may never meet them. So it just very much is a. It's a very much a hands-off kind of transaction thing, but that sounds scary.

It is. And it's cool. I mean, the whole point is to take the middleman out. That's like the whole thought of the cryptocurrency space is that, Hey, you know, every, because every hand that you add into a transaction makes has to make money, it has to get

Rich: paid. When I get these DoorDash fees with six different line items, I'm like this pizza was 1222.

Why is the, why am I paying 30, 46? It makes no sense.

Courtney: Exactly. So once you had those hands date, all the hands have to get paid. So it actually can bring down the cost of doing business inefficiently for the average person. Like, for example, if, um, so I lived in the Philippines, um, and I also lived in Brazil for a little bit of time.

And if I wanted to send my friends in the Philippines or Brazil money or something, The cost of Western union. It is like if I wanted to send them like $20 as a birthday present, I spent like a hundred just to send you 20, like, come on, I can send Bitcoin or I can send Eve artists in whatever I want to send.

Um, whichever amount, just easily kind of through the, I send them to their wallet and it just makes life so much easier. So if I'm just sending a small amount of money, I'm not going through all these fees because it just makes it cost prohibitive. If you're sending a small amount of money with all the fees.

Rich: It makes sense to me probably because I started dabbling in it and I tend to just be into the, like the tech stuff. Generally I am a geek like that as well, but also I think about a time where it might've served me to have crypto when I lost my wallet or yeah. I lost that and I couldn't get to anything.

And I was like, I just need money, but I didn't have like my debit card anywhere for people who were thinking about like some of these, like other things they're like, Oh, there's like the car Danno and or Cardona. I still don't know. I didn't actually know it was. Doge coin for like weeks. Cause I never actually heard someone say it.

And then I was like, I've been calling it Dodge, I've been wrong this whole time. There are these other things that are out there where some of them look actually pretty interesting. Like, uh, and this is not investment advice, but like MADEC or what for formerly polygon is like super interesting to me.

Like you said, doing the research that has been a big part of it. And there's some of these other ones where like I have to really buy into the company. I'm not just buying the name because that's, what's trendy in and moving. I probably do that a bit more diligently with stocks than with crypto, but it is still very much a factor.

So what do you say? Like, cause there's Bitcoin there's Eve and then there's like all these other things that are out

Courtney: there. So yes, I call it Bitcoin, my gold Eve, my silver and then everything else. So it could be anything from copper to pirate. I don't know if you know of high rates kind of fool's gold.

So that's kind of like my. My explanation. Um, and most things fall into pirate whole school, but I tell people, and this is the same thing with the stock market. There's a couple of similarities. Like what does it suppose to, what is it supposed to do? Like what is it telling the world that it does and does it actually do it?

And if the, is there a need to do it? So for example, like when you go to target target, like, doesn't tell you, like, you don't go to target with a list. Target tells you what you, what you need. Okay.

Rich: Target does tell you what you need and it gets it's gas too.

Courtney: So I mean, but the same thing is that, you know, target, you know, provides a service and it does it relatively well.

It makes it, you know, I like shopping at target. I mean, if I have to go to Walmart and this is no shades Walmart, I'm not happy about it. I'm like, huh. Oh, gotta go to Walmart. Ooh, Ooh, Ooh. What's hard. I'm like, Ooh, go to target Fu, but I looking at the crypto market, the same thing is that, you know, you have, um, a coin.

Does it do what it says it's gonna do, you know, is it needed? Is that a necessary thing? Understanding if it's needed, does it do what it says it's going to do? And if it's needed, that kind of helps you think about the coin in a reasonable way. Like doge was actually specifically said, like it wasn't done for any reason.

We were just proving that people just buy anything. That was really what the, what? The founders, the boats.

Rich: I gotta get that shit out. My portfolio.

Courtney: Yeah. It's just there hanging out. Losing money. It's collecting dust. That's the thing. And because it's not as regulated as the stock market is, and I'm very sure that it's in the next year or so, it's going to be regulated like the stock market.

That's what I think, because the sec is taking a look at it, um, a couple of crypto ETFs. So I think they are really getting to that point. But that being said, kind of circling back to generally it's really that research aspect, is it doing what it says it's going to do? So Eve actually runs a lot of different programs, I guess, for lack of better term, they run a lot of things run off of yeast.

So that's something that I'm like, Hey, this really has a good use. And then when I look at some other things, like MADEC, I look at some other, um, Cartano I look at some of them like, okay, well, this is what you do. Like proof of stake is actually an important concept in the crypto world. So there are a lot of proof of stake coins, you know, what does he do that?

How long has it been around? What is the number of coins of circulation? It's kind of same thing with stocks. I mean, when I'm looking at a stock, I'm like, okay, you know, what's the volume three, three shares were done this whole day between nine 30 and four I'm exaggerating, but only the volume is three shares.

Rich: So, can we talk about volume for a second? Because now that I think about it, I've never actually talked about the importance of volume and I'll be like fully honest when I'm, when I've looked at stocks and things. I, I haven't paid as much attention to the volume as other stuff, which is probably why my ass need to be DCA and, and not playing around in the game at all.

Why is the volume part important? Because it's very easy for people to look just at the price and whether it's been up

Courtney: and down, so volume tells you like, who is in it, like who's going in and out of it. Like that's what, and you want to know. Tell me you, how many people are going in and out of it or how many people are actually in it.

It does help to say like, you know, market cap to like, it's telling you like how many people have adopted this as something to be on. If that makes sense or something to be involved with. That's important just like daily

Rich: active users for an app.

Courtney: Yes. Exactly. Exactly. And that's the biggest thing. That's hard to tell people like, okay, well what's going on?

Like, what's the market cap? What's the volume. What's the circulating supply. Like how much is floating around in the world? And you've you see like a couple of, you know, a million coins circulating, wait a minute. What? Like that doesn't make sense. I'm looking at the market cap. I'm like, okay, it's over, you know, it's 10 billion.

Okay. What's the volume. Like half of the market cap, like looking at the numbers, I want you to see big numbers there. And some people are saying, well, Courtney, well, I want to get into the next Bitcoin. I don't know what to tell you. I can tell you the standards. And I can tell you, as you learn more about the space, you will learn to say, you know what?

I think that coin has a chance of doing something amazing. Same thing with a company, like, as you learn more about the stock market, and as you really get into your lane about what, you know, you're going to find the opportunities like my mom, it was a retired, is it retired nurse? Excuse me. She was when she was nursing.

She, there were certain companies that she really rocked with. You know, she would say, Hey, I really think this company is going to do something amazing. And she was right because she was in the States. She understood what they were doing. And so the, the less, the more exposure you have to a space, the more you're kind of able to think to yourself, like, Hey, that makes sense.

No, that doesn't make sense, but if you're not in the space and you just have to become a lot more educated, so you're going to need to look at the white paper for every single coin that you're interested in investing in. And that's also for you to kind of do more research. Once you look at the white paper, I'm going to Google, what does, you know, XYZ coin do?

What it says is going to do? Does it do it, you know, is it viable? What are the people saying about it? And it's not. And I don't want you to say what other people saying about and take their word, but it's kind of informing all of the decisions that you're making. And, and here's the other thing. You're not going to hit it out of the park every single time.

And I think as long as you allow yourself that opportunity and you stick within your percentages, there they are. Again, you make sure that you're not going too far out.

Rich: Yeah. And so I had a reaction over here about the percentages, because I just got locked down in net and it's made a big difference. Did the other thing.

And it's kind of obvious. It's like the role of discipline and patience in this and just sticking to your principles. And so now that I've gotten kind of comfortable with, okay, like I want to take. Twenty-five or whatever percent it is. And okay. Like if it gets to this level of loss I'm out, or I'm just going to hold knowing it's going to go back up.

Even just seeing like one full cycle now of the market where I've seen it, you know, ride high and come down to where some things went from being like over $2 to like, you know, 96 cents and, and stuff like that. Super important. And one. Last thing I wanted to get to on this. And I've been trying to work on my analogy for how to describe just like the blockchain.

And I was talking to a friend about this and the analogy that he made to me was that a theorem is, uh, is the equivalent of an operating system. And so that would kind of also apply to like car Dano and some of these other ones that are specifically blockchains or level one versus level two. Those are the, for lack of a better phrase.

Like those are the like applications that they're like built on top of that level one to ultimately allow the transactions to happen faster.

Courtney: I think that's great. I think it was a great, like you kinda, you have your foundation and then kind of what's running on top of it. And you also see if you, once you're starting to look at what's running on top of it, you see a lot of things running on Ethereum.


Rich: And so if there has been a friend that MADEC has been a friend, but like you say, definitely go out there. Do research, know that you probably are going to lose some money regardless of what you do. You, you need to be prepared to lose some money. It's not going to be. Wins all day, every day. And Courtney has been awesome to finally have you on the podcast.

There's so much more stuff we could have talked about as far as the crypto world goes. And one thing I, I was curious about as we wrap up in, I mentioned this to you upfront is a I've noticed crypto. It reminds me very much of Silicon Valley broey tech. When I go look at these white papers and these websites, I do have a little bit of.

Like internal turmoil where I'm like, I'm really big on DEI, but at the same time, I'm trying to get this coin. And I do actually believe in where this thing is going to go in the future. So it's kind of hard to reconcile that. So that's my experience as a brother, looking in, I'm curious, what's been kind of your experience.

So outside of getting the coin just as being a woman in the space, honestly, honestly, don't know very many. And of course I know I'm not deep in these streets, but at the same time, we're both in personal finance and I don't know very many,

Courtney: so. It's so interesting as you say that I do. It's a push and pull for me too, is the push and pull for me across the board and personal finance and some of these other spaces too, because cannabis is very white also.

But I think to a certain extent, understanding that a lot of it is based in history. And a lot of it is based on the system and the way that we are able to, I think this is a way for us to break out the system. I think, yes, a blockchain Bitcoin cryptocurrency is very bro ish, but I also see the opportunity.

There's a lot of spaces, especially in the NFT space that a lot of us are getting our due. Where, um, there's a, there was a, I was in a virtual art gallery where there was, um, black artists are black artists. I mean, that we know of actually showcasing their work and they were going to the marketplace without kind of an art gallery or, you know, kind of an intermediary and really making the money that they were entitled to, or they were worth.

And I think this space. Really once you take out the middleman, it really allows us, allows us to flourish. So, no, I don't love the way cryptocurrency comes across, but it's also a function of cryptocurrency is very much a techie thing and tech is not emphasized and on a large scale and communities of color.

And it hasn't been, I mean, when they I've noticed and I'm like, I came, my dad's a math teacher, so I can't come home with, I'm not, I can't do this. I'm not doing math. We don't play those games with math, but I can also see. And I also listen to other people that I was around in. The first thing they were saying is, Oh, math is too hard for me or numbers that's too much.

And I think that was a narrative that was encouraged in schools. So the opportunities that may have been there, um, that someone might've been able to jump into tech to actually get into a place where they would be able to, you know, um, start a cryptocurrency or utilized cryptocurrency was kind of really cut off on the knees very early in education when you did not push them beyond their comfort zone, because you didn't do a lot of extent.

A lot of teachers didn't believe that they could. And I, that's what I also love about . If you look at the number of PhDs in STEM and actually professionals across the board, , and I'm not an HBCU grid, but they HBC use have pushed out the most African-American professionals, STEM people in the nation consistently over their history.

And it just shows me that if you actually allow people to grow and learn, they, we will succeed and be, and do all those things. So I, I get excited, but I'm like, yeah, the system was set up this way. I'm going to acknowledge the way the system was set up. I'm going to encourage others to people to kind of get up to speed.

And me as being a teacher, I can help that. But then also it's my job to contribute to those educational institutions. That actually promote this type of learning and encouragement. So it's like money makes money. So I'm like, okay, I can get my money. And I had, I, not only can I get this money, I can share with people like my peers, but then I also can influence by, you know, providing funding to the next generation.

Rich: I love that. I love that, you know, you know how to close the game out strong because that is an offense. It actually got me kind of fired. I've been look at me, I'm like, look, I'm thinking about like purpose and mission and, uh, and some of this other stuff, I'm so glad that we're finally able to make this happen.

So let the PMB fam know, uh, where they can find you. And also if you got anything that's, that's coming up, I'm pretty sure you're. Pretty much around the web at the investor,

Courtney: everywhere that you can find me. So YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, I'm on Instagram. The most Twitter I'm trying to tweet is more, but I'm actually also on public since you shared it.

I actually have a, a blue check on the public and on Instagram. And now you can't tell me nothing.

The places that I hang out. So pretty much Instagram of public is where I'm the most iconic pop in, on Twitter. But those are pretty much the places I am, but I do have a YouTube channel. I may be doing a summit this summer. Um, I did a summer last summer. Really went well. People got a lot of value probably going to do that again.

Rich: Awesome. Awesome. So definitely keep me, keep us posted on what's happening in the summit world. Definitely encourage folks to go out and follow you on the various platforms. One thing I like about public and probably a lot of the other platforms, you can just kind of like follow and see what other people are doing and learn that way as well.

So just because you're on these platforms does not mean that you need to be making moves. So yeah, this has been. It's squeeze it. I don't know if I've used that word recently. It has been exquisite having you on the podcast, Courtney and, uh, yeah, really appreciate you dropping knowledge on the PNB fan.

Courtney: Thank you. I appreciate it.

Rich: Thanks again, the Courtney for coming on the podcast, this episode was three years in the making, like I said, up top and way overdue, but glad we finally had the chance to connect and make it happen. When it comes to investing. There are so many things to get into in a way that fits your lifestyle and interests.

So remember the importance of building a foundation and doing your research. I know it's easy to get overwhelmed, but it can also be fun if you allow it to be. And if you enjoyed this episode, be sure to share it with someone like yourself and follow or subscribe on your favorite podcast player, if you haven't already.

And if you have thoughts on today's show, hit us up on Twitter and or Instagram at pay balances and at the IB investor. Thanks for listening until next time, do something dope.

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