Here in the Upstate, tis the season for countless Eastern Gray Squirrels to busily bury, unbury, rebury and even lose track of diligently harvested acorns. While this peculiar behavior can stump even the most astute sciuriologist (trivia nugget #1), there’s a perfect (used loosely) connection to investor goals and outcomes. Nuturally, I expect you’ll want an explanation. Don’t worry; it’s not too tough a nut to crack.

The “Bury”

At first, this might remind you of a Sunday School lesson about a buried talent that was not viewed favorably. But for our squirrel (investor), this is placing a portion of their assets in a strategic position to be more valuable in the relatively near-term. The desired outcome here is accessibility/liquidity of the investment once it has appreciated in value.

The “Re-bury”

Sometimes un-burying the nut is simply to move it to a more desirable location. This can be the traditional trading of stocks in the market. For your Vicinity investment, you may need to see it through a specified term, but reinvesting your returned capital (hopefully with some financial gains) can result in compounding growth of your investment portfolio.

The “Set it and forget it”

There are many acorns that are planted and left to grow into mighty oaks. As these take root, they multiply exponentially to create more acorns, more trees, and more forests. Quite the powerful impact from a scurry (trivia nugget #2) of squirrels.

With investing, the “set it and forget it” investments are intended to develop over time, not only into personal financial returns, but into generational impacts and broader reach. This is not playing the market. This is building companies that create jobs and strengthen your community.

The “Lost Nut”

At this point, you may think I’m the lost nut. For squirrels, this can result from forgetfulness…or in my yard, from young children who observe the phenomenon then promptly pluck the acorn from the ground once the squirrel leaves.

But I’m talking about the risk of investing. There’s always the chance of loss. You need to be okay with that in order to seize opportunities that could be beneficial and meaningful. But do so only with what you can afford to lose – this is key to avoiding serious setbacks. In other words, don’t bury the only nut you have. But to benefit from a future stash, you’ll likely need to collect and store many (albeit small) nuggets.

If you’ve endured the puns and Fall fun to this point, you likely understand that Vicinity investments target “tree-planting,” or deepening roots which aim at positive outcomes for whole communities. The goals of these investments are certainly personal financial returns over time, but alongside broader economic impact for ourselves and our neighbors, nurtured by transparency and proximity. Investing close to home has never been easier and creating your local portfolio of community businesses can be just around the acorner.