Kiasu

Written By
Paul Tracy
Updated June 12, 2021

What is Kiasu?

Kiasu is a Chinese word that roughly translates to "fear of losing out."

How Does Kiasu Work?

Kiasu can be found in many aspects of daily life. Some people parent their children with a kiasu philosophy, for example, pushing them to excel and investigating the best educational options for their kids.

The business world also experiences kiasu in many areas. For example, some investors are kiasu when they spend an excessive amount of effort trying to get what they want. Some consumers are kiasu when they camp out in front of a store to buy something that will not change their lives significantly.

Why Does Kiasu Matter?

Kiasu can be good and bad. It can encourage people to persevere and create amazing results; it can also waste time and energy. In the investing world, it can create an irrational fear of losing.

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