Interest rates have never been lower, so the usual suspects – term deposits and savers’ accounts – aren’t the best investment in the current economy. We’ve researched the top five investments in 2021 and calculated the returns you can expect.


A common misconception when it comes to investing is that you need thousands of dollars before you start. This isn’t the case at all.

Comparison company Canstar says that the sooner you start investing the better. If you’re going to invest in the sharemarket it’s best to stick with the old mantra – ‘buy low, sell high’.

When you invest in the share market you need to be prepared to ride out any storms. This will help you remain focused in the long term.

Investopedia published an article saying that you should choose a strategy and stick to it. While it’s tempting to invest in the share market with a focus on short-term gains, you should focus on the long-term picture.

While well-known companies may seem like the safest investment option, their returns may be limited so you should consider investing in small-cap shares, which have greater potential. Small-cap companies are those with a market capitalisation of between $300 and $2 billion.

The Motley Fool reported in August that BlueBet Holdings Ltd (ASX: BBT) is a worthwhile investment. BlueBet is a mobile-first online wagering provider. Users can bet on Australian and international sports and racing through the app. The company has experienced strong growth over the last 12 months. It’s made a -1.2% dent on the market in Australia and is set to expand into the US market.

Damstra Holdings Ltd is another company to watch. Damstra specialises in a cloud-based workplace management platform. Over the last 12 months, they increased their revenue by 63% to $34.5 million. Although they did not offer a forecast for the year ahead, management is positive about the future, saying that they have multiple growth options and strategies that they are implementing.

Retailers have been doing it tough. But Michael Hill announced a 15-fold increase in their full-year profits. Redbubble has also reported record earnings of more than $100 million in artist revenue for the last 12 months. Fashion and apparel company, Globe International reported a net profit of $33 million for the year to June 30.

Redbubble shares have increased by 14.9% and 28.7% respectively as online retail spending surges in lockdowns.


Cryptocurrency holders have enjoyed massive returns, with 20% of investors reporting profits of over $30,000 according to a report by Cryptocurrency is traded on online-based cryptocurrency exchanges such as CoinSpot, Binance, and Cointree.

Analytics Insight published an article listing the top five cryptocurrencies to invest in, in September.

Coming up on top is Bitcoin, which is priced at $48,000 and expected to grow even further. It remains one of the oldest and most dominant cryptocurrencies.

A close competitor of Bitcoin is Ethereum which stands out because it’s been designed to support decentralised apps. It also has the largest base for blockchain developers in the crypto world. The outlook for Ethereum is positive, with it expected to remain credible in coming years.

Trading platform, Finance launched Binance Coin in 2017, and today it is growing exponentially. This year it experienced record growth and it looks as if the upward trend will continue over coming years.

Environmentalists should look to Cardano, which is considered the ‘green cryptocurrency’ because it consumes less energy than the Bitcoin network and the mining process. It has surged in value over the last couple of months and it looks like it has a promising future.

If you have $10,000 to invest, then investing in Binance Coin or Cardano could be a better choice because the returns may be greater than if you invested in the well-established Bitcoin cryptocurrency.

Exchange Traded Funds

ETCs (Exchange-Traded Commodities) are traded on the ASX (Australian Securities Exchange) and include ETFs (Exchange-Traded Funds), gold, coal, and other commodities.

Finder reported that the top five ETFs as of August 2021 were:

  1. ETFs Ultra Long Nasdaq 100 Hedge Fund
  2. BetaShares Geared US Equity Fund – Currency Hedged (Hedge Fund)
  3. ETFs Battery Tech & Lithium ETF
  4. BetaShares Crude Oil Index ETF-Currency Hedged (Synthetic)
  5. BetaShares Geared Australian Equity Fund (Hedge Fund)


ETFs Ultra Long Nasdaq 100 Hedge Fund is a trading product that offers investors returns that are positively related to the returns of the Nasdaq-100 index. It has an expected return of 2.0%-2.75%.

BetaShares Geared US Equity Fund – Currency Hedged is a cost-effective way to gain exposure to the US share market, without the need to borrow funds, or risk making losses. This particular fund is geared towards currency exposure. Its current return is 1.34%.

ETFs Battery Tech & Lithium ETF has the objective of providing investors exposure to the energy storage and production megatrend. The return of the fund over the last 12 months is 19.17% making it a solid investment.

BetaShares Crude Oil Index ETF-Currency Hedged (Synthetic) offers investors exposure to crude oil futures.

BetaShares Geared Australian Equity Fund (Hedge Fund) gives investors cost-effective exposure to the Australian share market. Its 12-month return is 6.75%.


Property remains unattainable for many Australians. There are however opportunities for Australians to invest in property without the huge outlay.

Bricklet is a marketplace that allows buyers to purchase a portion of a property. These are known as bricklets.

You can choose where to invest. Bricklet currently has bricklets listed in Manly, NSW for $19,200, $20,000 per bricklet, in Burwood, VIC, and $20,409 for a bricklet in Newstead, QLD.

You can purchase as many bricklets as you want, allowing you to diversify into many different regions. You will also be treated as a property owner, so you can make decisions about the property if you want to, or you can be a passive investor if you wish. The choice is yours.

Term deposits or savings accounts

If you don’t want to be concerned with what the markets are doing, a savings account or a term deposit could be the safest option for you. Both types of accounts allow you to earn interest on your savings.

When you invest in a term deposit, your savings are locked away for a fixed period, and then you are paid interest at the end of it. You have the option to either continue with another term deposit, or you can withdraw the funds. After you start your term deposit you cannot add more funds to the deposit and you cannot withdraw the funds until the end of the term either.

The comparison website, Canstar has listed term deposit rates. ME Bank offers an interest rate of 0.70% for 6 months. Judo Bank is slightly better at 0.85% for the same length of time.

A savings account allows you to make regular deposits and you will gain interest on those deposits. Online bank, ING offers an interest rate of 0.05% so if you’re hoping to make significant gains, a savings account is not going to be a good choice for you.

If you’re risk-averse, then a term deposit or savings account is going to be the best place to put your money, but if you’re looking for significant gains you need to look elsewhere to ETFs, the sharemarket, or cryptocurrency.

If your budget is limited and you only have $10,000 to invest, then the share market is your best option because it offers the best returns. Even though the returns are not as high as recent years, because of the COVID-19 pandemic, you can still expect returns of 7.7%.

Remember:  this advice is general only and does not take into account you personal circumstances.  We always recommend you talk to an expert.

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