Coupons and vouchers are loved by us all, but you can’t think of surviving on them alone, can you?
A Japanese man has apparently done exactly that. He admits to living off them for almost 36 years now and claims that he hasn’t spent a single yen of his own during this period.
Hiroto Kiritani, a 71-year-old, happens to be a small celebrity in Japan. His skill to live with ease solely on coupons without using any money of his own is quite impressive, to say the least.
He has appeared on multiple TV shows and events to share his experience. But he does not happen to be very frugal. He has managed to do this by getting coupons from companies he invested in the past years.
Kritani happened to be a pro in shogi (Japanese Chess) and ventured into a stock investment when he was 35. He first visited Tokyo Securities Kyowaki, an investment company, to teach its employees the skill of playing shogi. Fascinated by the stock bubble of the 1980s, he purchased his first stock in 1984.
Sadly, in December of 1989, the Nikkei Stock Average crumbled, and he lost 100 million yen. It was a hard blow, but it also made him aware of investor benefits’ value, a substitute for dividends. In simple terms, if a company’s profitability stays over a predefined threshold, shareholders are eligible for some benefits given in the form of coupons and vouchers.
During the difficult period of the Japanese stock exchange crash of 1989, these investor benefits supported Kiritani’s survival, letting him buy food and clothing without using any real money. The same thing occurred in 2011, post the Great East Japan Earthquake, which resulted in the stock market going downwards one more time. The coupons he received were plenty for him to get by, and as word spread about his ability to live almost exclusively on them, he became popular in Japan.
Hiroto Kiritani stated that if a business performance worsens, dividends will be minimized, so this system is beneficial for large investors. Small shareholders are much better off with the investor benefits that over 40 percent of large Japanese companies provide, as profitability is required to only stay over a certain threshold.