Money Notes

Money Notes #32 – The Bi-Weekly Newsletter from Halo Invest

Two notes in one month. Only the most useful, relevant and practical entries on finance and money. If you like money notes #32, invite your friends to subscribe here.


This is our first letter this month and we are so excited to be writing to you!

A “welcome to the second half of 2022” message is long overdue.
How has it been so far? Hope you didn’t miss the juicy financial tips we included in the previous newsletter, Money Notes  #31, and you’ve started implementing them.
Missed it? Catch up HERE. You’re welcome!

Setting and hitting financial goals doesn’t just happen on a whim. It takes deliberate, sometimes strenuous effort to get it done, but the reward? Sweet!
So, if you’re looking for a sign to get your finances in order, this is it!

So, let’s get straight to today’s business!
A few interesting stuff for you today right here

Hot Topic in Finance 

Industry conversations we think you should know.

Nnenna Onyewuchi, Chief Growth Officer/Co-founder, Halo Financial Services

When talking about financial inclusion, there is a lot of focus on the unbanked (deservedly so), however, we’re also not paying attention to the fact that way too many Nigerians are missing out on an opportunity to build wealth through investing –  Halo Financial Services’ Chief Growth Officer and Co-founder, Nnenna Onyewuchi.

When talking about financial inclusion, there is a lot of focus on the unbanked (deservedly so), however, we’re also not paying attention to the fact that way too many Nigerians are missing out on an opportunity to build wealth through investing –  Halo Financial Services’ Chief Growth Officer and Co-founder, Nnenna Onyewuchi.

We all know Twitter is wild, but this?!
CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele was sounding a warning against the purchase of Dollars with Naira, especially as it concerns electioneering. This clampdown is supposedly in a bid to stop the further devaluation of the Naira. See for yourself here.

For You

Fun, useful stuff you will absolutely love!

1. Nigerians never miss out on any opportunity to make light of otherwise tough situations. In response to the news about the clamp down on the “illegal” purchase of dollars, someone tweeted this. 😂
2. Our most recent Halo Feature post focused on Intellectual Property lawyer, Samuel Abu. He spoke to us about his career as a Lawyer, as well as how he combines that with being a shoemaker and contract advisor. Check it out.

If you found money notes #31 helpful, follow us on InstagramTwitterFacebook, and LinkedIn, and check our Blog for more frequent updates, tips, and tools to help you improve your relationship with money.

Quizzes & Trivia

Finance trivia: How much do you know?

Answer these simple finance trivia questions from beginning to end, and let’s see if you are a money guru or not.

Check out more of our other fun and exciting quizzes here!

Don’t forget to follow us on all our social media platforms for useful tips on how to build wealth. Find links here.

Features LifeStyle

Communities: the future of financial services & financial success

The average person is a product of their socialization, so it makes sense that being part of a community is central to the human experience. The Igbo term, Igwebuike (literally, there is strength in numbers) and the Zulu concept of Ubuntu (literally, I am because you are) are just two examples of how Africans have traditionally valued the concept of community. 

Communities provide connection, support and a sense of belonging that has been proven to strengthen our individual resilience. Members of a strong community recognise, and value, their interdependence. For the community to thrive, the individuals must do their part.

The foundation of any community is trust. Nigerians have long leveraged this trust to create wealth; from traditional savings schemes like ajo to investment clubs, to churches that provide low/no interest loans to their congregation. Even market women will pool resources to help a new member buy her first stock. Community members give because they know, and trust, the people they are giving to… and are confident that when their turn comes, their community will not let them down.


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Why communities?

Trust is also the bedrock of a relationship with a financial institution. Halo Financial Services is leveraging the trust that already exists within a community to help more people start and sustain their journey to financial freedom.

We use technology to make it easier, and more rewarding for community members to build wealth together. Halo offers savings, investment, credit, and other financial services as a service to communities; so that their members can more easily achieve their personal financial goals.

Halo’s focus on communities is a strategic decision which benefits the company, the community, and the individual members. Approaching communities, rather than individuals, will enable us to scale faster and broaden our impact.

Communities benefit from a dynamic revenue share arrangement and more engaged membership. Community members can use the size of their collective to get higher returns for each individual; interest rates are calculated on the value of the entire community’s portfolio.

How will they engage with us?

Part of our approach is to meet customers where they are. So, we offer communities (and their members) multiple ways to engage with us. For the digitally confident, who prefer self-service, we offer both a web and a mobile app. Communities can choose to have their own app – built and managed by Halo but branded to the community. They can also host their community in a branded environment on the Halo app.

For the informal market, who prefer to deal face to face, we offer access to our full suite of products via a nationwide agent network. For more affluent customers with more complex financial needs, we offer financial advisory and portfolio management.

In conclusion

The fintech landscape is increasingly competitive, and Halo’s community-based approach is a real differentiator and a valuable advantage. It is our mission to help as many Nigerians as possible build and sustain wealth. Connecting communities to high-quality savings and investments, and providing them with affordable, accessible financial management tools is how we plan to do it.


Follow us on Instagram and Twitter to get information and fun tips to help you on your journey to financial security.


Money Notes

Money Notes #30 – The Bi-Weekly Newsletter from Halo Invest

Two notes in one month. Only the most useful, relevant and practical entries on finance and money. If you like money notes #30, invite your friends to subscribe here.


Happy new month! I know you haven’t heard from me in a while and you miss me, but I’m here now! How are you doing? I hope this mail finds you well! (I hope I didn’t trigger any work anxiety there, 😂)

A lot has happened in the country this week and I hope you are taking enough time to rest. You should know that stress can lead to poor decision-making and that a level head helps you make better financial decisions.

In this week’s newsletter, I’ll include a few exciting stuff that will help you relax and put a smile on your face.

Halo Feature is back!

Every week, we talk to Nigerians around the world about money and how they make it. This week features Charles Njoku, a product designer and tech entrepreneur. He spoke to us about his tech start-up, Spire, and the challenges he has had to face as a first-time founder. 

If you are interested in the tech space, you are a start-up/potential start-up founder, an entrepreneur, or you simply are interested in getting money tips, read the interview here.

For You

Fun, useful stuff you will absolutely love!

Have you seen Netflix Naija’s Blood Sisters? Did you connect with any of the characters? We curated a quiz where we guess what your Blood Sister’s character is and your affinity to risks as an investor based on the characters. Take the quiz.

Investor Sabinus definitely always knows how to crack us up! 

If you found this helpful, follow us on InstagramTwitterFacebook, and LinkedIn, and check our Blog for more frequent updates, tips, and tools to help you improve your relationship with money.


How Faith Transitioned Into HR From Economics

Every week, we talk to Nigerians around the world about money and how they make it.

This week features Faith, an HR personnel, creative writer and poet. We talk about his affinity for people, books and writing. He also lets us in on how he transitioned into HR from a background in Economics.


Halo Invest gives you access to the best financial insights, insider tips, and tools to help you improve your relationship with money.


Please introduce yourself

My name is Emmanuel Faith. I make people happy and help them be productive. It is what Nigerians call HR, and I currently lead the people and culture at Cowrywse. I am in my late 20s and love to have fun, but my definition of fun slightly differs from others. Sometimes, it could be watching shows on Netflix or reading. I like good food too. I think I will just stop there. LOL

What does your job entail?

So, my job title says Lead People and Culture, so that’s what I do at Cowrywise. As I said, I make people happy and productive. I majorly spearhead people and processes that align with business goals and objectives.

You appear to be a Multipotentialist. So, how did you know that HR was what you wanted to do as a career?

That is an intriguing question. Interestingly, one of my colleagues asked this today, and I asked him to go to LinkedIn. LOL

I have a background in Economics from the Obafemi Awolowo University. Now, if you study Economics in my school, there is a high chance you will pursue a career in finance. It has always been that way to have many of the graduates working in big finance firms or oil and gas companies.

I probably was going to follow that path. I interned with Meristem, Afrivest, and attempted to intern in Accenture, but, in my final year, I discovered that I do not have a very good relationship with numbers, which of course, affects my finance too. As of now, one of my screens has numbers, and I am already developing a slight headache. 

Oh, I feel you!

Right? So, I discovered that I probably would not go into finance. Now, when I say I am not good with finance, it does not mean I don’t know numbers. I do. It is just that analysing it gives me a headache, so I decided to explore other things. 

I joined the Tax club and won a competition that gave me an internship opportunity as a bonus that I could access after I graduated. I started out interning with a tax firm, where I worked on payroll management; one of the subsets of Human Resources (HR). Then, I made a conscious effort to find out what being an HR personnel entails, because people had said to me “ you like managing people, you are good with people relations”. I think basically, that’s how my journey into the HR field began.

I volunteered with Aramide Abe, God bless her wherever she is right now. She managed a community called Naija Startups and I worked as her recruitment assistant, which was how I started my HR practice, full-time.

I handled the recruitment for all the startups in her community, amongst other tasks, you can imagine how hectic that was. Afterwards, I started writing certifications and worked at General Electric, and here I am today.


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That was quite the journey. Asides HR, what other interests do you have?

I read a lot and love to discuss books. I like to uphold and spread the reading culture. Between 2018 and 2020, I read 300 books, that’s 100 books every year, and since then, I’ve read one book per week.

So, I read about 4 to 5 books per month. In 2021, I tried to do 60, and in 2022, since I read a book per week, I have read about 18 to 21 books this year.

Wow! Interesting.

Beyond reading, I especially enjoy discussing African books. I think Africa has amazing writers, so, if you don’t read African books, you should start. 

I have a blossoming relationship with a publishing house; Ouida Lagos/Ouida stores where I buy half of my books, the other half, I get at Roving Heights. I’m waiting for Roving Heights to sign me. 

Roving Heights, If you read this interview, come and sign me! LOL

I believe everyone should imbibe a reading culture. Of course, you don’t have to read 100 books per year, but reading is one of the best forms of acquiring knowledge. Whether you listen to podcasts or watch YouTube videos, you should read at least 1 or 2 books per month.

I’ve never said this in an interview before, but I think reading can help you curb bad habits. I can’t count the number of times I’ve been caught between “Hey, guys, let’s go to Cubana” and “Let me sit down and finish this book”, and when I choose to finish the book, I save about ₦13,000, I would have blown at Cubana, lmao. I should write about this. If you’re addicted to anything, just try to substitute it for reading, you’d see how refreshing it is.

I’m also a creative writer and a poet. I have 5 published works; 3 career-centered E-booksLagos Doesn’t Sleep, and December Blues. I have another free E-book I co-authored with my brother titled, Adulting in Nigeria

How do you balance all of these?

I get this question a lot. I can’t tell you that I have an exact hack. On my desk is a beautiful book, The Beautiful Side of the Moon by Leye Adenle; which was given to me by Ouida Books, and I have this Harvard business review on managing people. What this means is, that when I’m working and feel stuck, I take a pause and read a chapter.

For Poetry, it just comes. For instance, the last piece I wrote was for a friend who travelled to Puerto Rico. I wrote the poem in five minutes.

I’m not exactly a “structure” person, I’ve tried it and decided to just flow with spontaneity. But, because I’ve read James Clear’s Atomic Habits, I think I have created systems around me to ensure that I accomplish some goals.

Every time I teach an HR or personal development course, I always refer to the time I first ventured into the HR space and how I read HR articles every day, for six months. I cannot quantify the knowledge I gained in that period.

That’s inspiring! What excites you about your job and what’s the most challenging part of it?

My favourite thing is listening to people. I feel like if I did not get into the HR field, I would be a counsellor or a psychologist

I enjoy listening to people talk, and I love people listening to me talk. So, I enjoy it when people reach out to me to discuss their general work challenges or with new teammates that are struggling to adapt, or when they want my insight on something.

Also, I am thrilled that as an HR person, I know a lot about the business. I remember when I worked at General Electric, I could speak extensively about renewable energy because I was working there. Now that I’m in the fintech space, I can speak a lot about fintech processes. I’ve had interviews where the candidates were surprised that I’m an HR person because I spoke tech during the interview.

For challenges, it’s not entirely pleasing that the management has to make final calls. There is a lot of great stuff I often feel like we could do and I’d be told we don’t have the resources for it. 

I also do not enjoy working on the payroll part. 

It has been a very insightful discussion about your career. Now, let’s talk finances. What do your money habits look like?

Father, I thank you for Cowrywise, I’m a spender! Really, though, I’m not exactly a wasteful or lousy spender. I save on the spot, I save about 10 to 20% immediately after I get my earnings, thanks to Cowrywise.

My tithes follow, then I pay a whole lot of black tax and the rest is mine. I am what you can call a skeptical investor, so, I don’t do high-risk investments, the most I do are low and middle-risk investments.

Was there anything that shaped how you view money?

I was born into poverty. I was born into the trenches. After I joined Cowrywise, my views about money changed. When you see people earn what you’re earning and you see what they’re saving, it inspires you to do better. Between January and September last year, I saved about 33% of my income and I did not die, that’s when I realised, “I can do this”.

Another thing that helped shape my perspective about money was reading Arese Ugwu’s Smart Money Woman, I think it’s one of the best finance books. I know it was written to help women be more financially intelligent, but it’s a book every career person in Lagos should read.

Also, this year, I read The Psychology of Money by Morgan Housel and I urge everybody to read this book. It’s almost like you are reading an advanced level of Rich Dad, Poor Dad. It describes money from a psychological perspective. It helps you realise how many unnecessary expenses you have. You can buy the more affordable version of that thing you want to buy. Most times, the only reason why you would want to buy that very expensive version of that thing is to show off. 


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What is something you wish you did not have to spend on?

I honestly wish that I did not have to pay black tax. My friend said to me recently “with this money you are earning, you are a big boy in Lagos!”, and he is probably right, but by the time I pay bills and other stuff, a lot of my income is gone.

Another thing I wish I had more control over is my affinity to gift people things. There was a month I had spent about 10% of my income on gifts, I had to sit down with myself, and decided that was the end, no more gifts. I am too generous. Gifting is my love language, I like the joy of the recipient of the gifts.

Do you ever have to worry about money?

In 2020, yes. In 2021, slightly. This year, no. It is not like I have a lot of money, it is just that I am at that point where I know that I can never be out of a job. 

Ahan, MVP!

Do you get?! LOL. I know that I have that earning power because I have skills with which I can offer value. Money is a value exchange. Because the moment you can offer value, you are one step from making money. So, no, I do not have that money fear.

What would you consider a financial red flag?

Ah! People that like to party or club. Except your parents are affluent or you are earning like ₦3 million per month, I feel like if your default setting is “Omo, let’s go and blow this money!”, we have to check you.

Another red flag is if you are always trying to keep up with trends. People who always want the latest iPhones, MacBooks, designers, etc. 

Finally, what exciting thing are you working on?

I recently created a card game for book lovers. You know how you’ll go to these funny parties and they’re telling you to do ridiculous things, I attend a lot of hangouts and I’m always like “Can we play something else where I don’t have to kiss my partner?” 

So, I created something for book lovers, it is called Book Map Games, you can follow us on Instagram and Twitter at Book Map Games. The whole idea is to help you journey through books. It has exciting different sections. My favourite is ‘High School Literature’, Where we ask you about the authors of books.

Other sections include; African Literature, Male Authors, Female Authors, etc.

The idea for the game was inspired by a time I wanted to hang out with my friends who are book also lovers, I checked different stores and they didn’t have any book games. People said “You know what? Create this thing.” I knew it was going to be a big project, but I took a stab at it and it came to life!

You can get copies at Ouida Books, but we are still looking for more distributors.

Who knows, I might write a poetry collection by the end of the year. I’m also looking at writing something for Valentine’s next year.


You can reach out to us at if you would like to share your story too.


Quizzes & Trivia

Quiz: How long will it take you to accumulate wealth?

Take this fun quiz to find out how long it will take to accumulate wealth by your money habits.

You can check out our other fun and interesting quizzes here.

Quizzes & Trivia

Do a Finance Health Check

Since our article on finance health checks, we hope you have made it an action point to check the state of your finances.

We however put together this fun quiz that could serve as a makeshift finance health check before you do a thorough one!

Features LifeStyle

Currency: Is the U.S. Dollar the strongest in the world?

With the socio-economic and financial landscape in Nigeria today, it makes a lot of sense why many Nigerians are looking into ways to make more money in another currency more valuable than the already weak naira. Given the hike in prices of goods and services, people want (and deservedly so) more value for their money. 

This is why investing in U.S. Dollar-denominated assets has gained more popularity over the years. The logic behind this is to shield against any further devaluation of the Naira. 

It would interest you though to know that U.S. Dollar, however popular, is not the strongest currency in the world, in fact, it isn’t Top 5.

The British Pound Sterling (GBP) which although is the oldest currency still in circulation today, isn’t the strongest either and it has become even weaker over the years as a result of Britain exiting the European Union.  

This article will be highlighting 3 currencies stronger than the dollar in ascending order of their strength. 

1. The Jordanian Dinar (JOD): 

an image of the 50 jordanian dinar bank note

It was created in 1949 and is the official currency of Jordan. Today, 1 Jordanian Dinar is valued at 1.41 USD and at about 585.80 NGN.

The Jordanian Dinar owes its strength to tight government policies aimed at maintaining fixed exchange rates. The Jordanian Dinar has been pegged to the U.S. Dollar for over 20 years, making it very stable. 

2. The Omani Rial (OMR): 

An image of 1 Omani Rial

The OMR which is the official currency of the Sultanate of Oman was created in 1970 when it was called the Rial Saidi and had as much value as the British Pound at that time. As of today, 1 OMR is equal to 2.60 USD, and 1,079.21 Nigerian Naira.

 The OMR has such a high rate because it was divided into 1000 Baisa, as compared to other countries whose currencies are divided into 100 units.

The OMR has also been able to maintain its stability because Oman is an oil-producing country, supplying countries all around the world.

3. The Kuwaiti Dinar (KWD): 

An image of the Kuwait 1/2 dinar

The Kuwaiti Dinar, created in 1961 after Kuwait gained independence from the United Kingdom, is the strongest currency in the world.

At the time of creation, just like the Omani Rial, the Kuwaiti Dinar’s value was just the same as the Pound Sterling. Today 1 KWD is equal to 3.26 USD, and in Naira, 1,355.03 NGN.  

The strength of the Kuwaiti Dinar is mostly owed to Kuwaiti being one of the biggest exporters of oil in the world, it has large oil reserves scattered all over the country.  

Another reason this currency is so strong is that Kuwait is a tax-free country. This is because it gets most of its government revenue (about 73%) from oil and gas as earlier stated.

This means Kuwait’s exports are more valuable than its imports. This is a piece of information you might want to hold on to if you’re thinking of doing business there. 

To what benefit is this information to you? 

If building wealth in these currencies appeals to you, you should look for ways to earn in these currencies. Do this by thoroughly researching business opportunities that serve these countries remotely or otherwise.  

This is useful information because saving in stable foreign currencies is advantageous to you in the long run.

For example, if you’re working in Kuwait and earning say 4 to 5 figures Kuwait Dinars, you can then put it into different investment options either in Kuwait or back home.

Currency investing has its different advantages, so, it’s always important to make proper research to see how you can work the different policies of these countries to your advantage.

You should check out this article on relatively strong currencies. 

Money Notes

Money Notes #27 – The Bi-Weekly Newsletter from Halo Invest

Two notes in one month. Only the most useful, relevant and practical entries on finance and money. If you like our notes, invite your friends to subscribe here.

Money Tip

Knowledge you can use

How to do a Finance Health Check

Did you know it’s easy to run into debts and unhealthy spending habits when you don’t review your financial situation? Just as how vital it is to our health to have regular medical checkups, our finances should also undergo health checks.
Is it a rigorous exercise? Most probably, but if you’re serious about being financially responsible, you should conduct a finance health check. We’ve highlighted 7 ways you can run a finance health check in this article.

Hot Topic in Finance

Industry conversations we think you should know.

If in 2020, the future you appeared, told you that in 2022 Jack Dorsey wouldn’t own Twitter anymore and it would belong to Tesla’s Elon Musk, what would have been your reaction?!
Not long after the news of becoming Twitter’s largest shareholder, Billionaire business magnate, Elon Musk strikes a deal to acquire Twitter for $44bn. What could this mean for the users of the social media platform?

Also, there appears to be a scarcity of U.S. Dollars in Kenya. leading to directives of rationing the scarce dollars by the Central Bank of Kenya.

If you found this helpful, follow us on InstagramTwitterFacebookLinkedIn, and check our Blog for more frequent updates, tips, and tools to help you improve your relationship with money.

Features LifeStyle

How To Do A Finance Health Check

Your financial health refers to the ways in which you manage your income in terms of your livelihood or sustenance. Do you have savings? Do you stack up debts? Are you hitting your financial goals? When last did you conduct a finance health check? 

Why is conducting a finance health check important?

The holistic definition of health by the World Health Organization has it that health is a state of complete physical, mental, and social well-being; and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity. 

Just like how humans require the different parts contributing to the human experience to be on point to be considered healthy, the parts that make up our finances also have to be on point!

We’ve put together a list of checks you can make on your finances to assess its health.

1. Identify where you want to be financially, and what you have presently:

We have heard over the years how important setting goals are, not just setting any goals but realistic goals. This also applies to your finances. Your goals should be SPECIFIC, MEASURABLE, ATTAINABLE, RELEVANT, and TIME-BOUND, you know, SMART. When you have identified your goals, you can then assess how you can get there by working with what you have NOW.

For example, If your goal is to have a diverse investment portfolio and increase your passive income earnings. You want to work out why you want it, when you want it, how you intend to achieve it, and start out by being honest with what you have and the money practices that have led you here.

2. Track your spending habits:

This takes intentional and careful effort. It takes total commitment and honesty to journal and track your every spending to see where your money is going. This helps you take into account if you have terrible spending habits, you also get to see the ridiculous albeit unintentional ways money leaves your account especially if you’re Nigerian… *deep sigh.

3. Track your monthly saving habits:

Do you save, or do you spend money as you make it? What is your disposition towards putting some money aside – Is it a priority or an afterthought? What have you done with past savings? Are you disciplined with your savings? Do you have a savings structure? These are important questions to ask yourself if you want to make any progress. 

One of the reasons people seem to be terrible at saving is because they can’t envision themselves having healthy saving habits while maintaining a healthy social life. Lucky for you, we have an article that addresses this.

4. Check if you hit your monthly and quarterly goals:

It’s important to run through your old goals to see if you met, exceeded, or fell short of them. This helps you diagnose what the pitfalls are and mitigate them in your future plans. 

5. Review your debts:

If you have any, it has to be done. You should review how well you’re doing in paying off debts, whether loan or credit debts. If this is poor, It’s important to see why there are recurring debts and see if it’s a direct result of bad spending habits. Actively work on reducing your debts.

6.  Check your self-accountability:

It’s great to have partners you are accountable to, but it’s also a service to yourself to ensure that you are financially accountable to yourself. This involves intentionality, honesty, and the willingness to play the long game. Self-care very well includes healthy financial practices.

7. Analyze your emergency funds:

Nobody ever likes unexpected, sudden occurrences, they are no fun. However, they happen; c’est la vie, such is life! This is why it is necessary to plan ahead to mitigate future occurrences; otherwise, you find that despite your intentions, emergencies keep eating away at your money. If you do not already have money set aside for emergencies, it’s best you start today.

8.  Cancel Unnecessary subscriptions:

This one is quite tough to swallow because who doesn’t enjoy the pleasures and comfort of our diverse subscriptions? I hate to be the one to tell you, but some of them have got to go if you are serious about practicing financial responsibility. 

Some of these things have been subscribed to for so long ago, that you do not even remember that you have them, yet there are monthly/yearly subtractions from your account. You should do a thorough look into your subscriptions, and if you find some that aren’t vital to work and in some cases, relaxation (because you are deserving}, let them go!

In summary, a finance health check is vital to your being financially responsible, and we advice should be done regularly (daily spending), monthly, quarterly, and yearly.

Here is a list of everything discussed about doing a finance health check so far

  • Identify where you want to be financially and what you have presently
  • Track your spending habit
  • Track your monthly savings
  •  Check if you hit your monthly and quarterly finance goals
  •  Review your debts, if any
  • Check your self-accountability
  • Analyze your emergency funds
  • Cancel unnecessary subscriptions

Is there anything you think we missed? Let us know in the comments.