Register For Our Mailing List

Register to receive our free weekly newsletter including editorials.

About Us

  •      
  •   

What is Firstlinks?


Firstlinks is a publishing service providing content written by financial market professionals with experience in wealth management, superannuation, banking, academia and financial advice.

Authors of articles in Firstlinks are investors and market practitioners with long careers in senior management positions. Firstlinks shares both their knowledge and their battle scars. Our community discusses ideas from an informed and impartial point of view, without pushing products or promoting services.

Firstlinks is supported by long-term sponsors and it does not accept one-off advertising or paid promotions. It was acquired by Morningstar Australasia in October 2019 to enable an expansion of its services and audience.

Firstlinks does not provide financial advice, and we do not know the personal or financial circumstances of any of our readers. We believe there is a strong need for investors to access quality financial writing, both to hear the different sides of any investment opportunity, and to improve their financial literacy. We provide strategies and guidance rather than trying to time the market, picking stocks or selecting next year’s star fund manager. In particular, we aim to inform investors about markets, regulations, structures and useful ideas.

Our target audience is ‘engaged investors’, particularly those who manage their own money, and financial market professionals.

Firstlinks operates with the following basic principles:

* Superannuation is an important part of every Australian’s long term savings plan and financial wellbeing.

* The aim of every investor should be financial independence and creating lifestyle options for later stages of their lives.

* We are not advocates for any specific type of superannuation fund, as the merits of various structures such as pooled super funds (commercial funds, industry funds, corporate funds) and self managed super funds depend on individual circumstances.

* We do not promote any particular form of holding securities (direct or managed funds, listed or unlisted, active or passive) as we believe they all hold a place.

* Financial advisers should play an important role in the savings, retirement, estate planning and protection strategies of the majority of Australians, especially as they approach retirement.

* There is no one correct investment strategy for anyone, and like any life skill, investors need to be as financially literate as possible to participate in their own investing.

* Investors should match their assets to their risk appetites, since the ability to cope mentally with volatile markets is as important as the financial performance.

Firstlinks focusses on investment strategies and ideas with a medium to long term market horizon. We encourage readers to take a ‘through the cycle’, risk-aware perspective. 

 

banner

Most viewed in recent weeks

Five ways the Retirement Review points to new policies

The Retirement Income Review goes much further than an innocent-sounding 'fact base', and is sure to guide policies in the run up to the next election. It will change how we think about retirement incomes.

Graeme Shaw on why investing is at a pivotal moment

Company profits have not improved for many years but higher valuations have been driven by falling rates and excess liquidity. Conditions do not suit a value and contrarian manager but here are some opportunities.

Retirement Review gives strong views on hoarding of super

The Review includes some profound findings, most notable that retirement income should include drawing down far more capital. Expect post-retirement products to proliferate under a Retirement Income Covenant.

11 key findings on retirement dreams during the pandemic

A mid-pandemic survey of over 1,000 people near or in retirement found three in four are not confident how long their money will last. Only 18% felt their money was safe during a strong economic downturn.

Bank scorecard 2020: when will the mojo return?

Banks severely cut dividends in 2020 but are expected to improve payments in 2021. History provides clues to when the banks will return to their 2019 levels of profitability, but who is positioned the best?

Generational wealth transfers will affect all investors

It's not only that 60 is the new 40, but 80 is the new 60. Many Baby Boomers spend up in retirement and are less inclined to leave a nest egg to their children. The ways wealth transfers will affect all investors.

Latest Updates

Shares

Hamish Douglass on big tech and life after COVID

On the sidelines of the Morningstar Conference, the Magellan co-founder reflects on the pandemic and which sectors are set to gain and lose. He says we were lucky the pandemic hit when it did (videos and transcripts).

Superannuation

Cost of running an SMSF receives updated judgement

Administration costs can rise for complexity, especially owning property in an SMSF, but fees are highly competitive from a wide range of service providers. The break-even cost is less than previously reported.

SMSF strategies

Three areas SMSFs should consider outsourcing

SMSF trustees often cite ‘control of my investments’ as the number one motivation for setting up their own fund. But it still makes sense to outsource some parts of a well-diversified portfolio.

Retirement

Apparently, retirees should learn to SKI

The Retirement Income Review demonstrated limited understanding of the risks faced by self-funded retirees implementing rational human behaviour. Spending to qualify for the age pension is not a solution.

Retirement

7-point checklist for managing the uncertain timing of death

Average life expectancies are a weak predictor of individual outcomes, and it's better to consider a range of probable lifespans. A plan that lasts to the average will disappoint every second retiree.

Exchange traded products

'Quality' ETFs under the microscope

Interest in 'quality' factor ETFs has increased this year, helped by very attractive returns. However, not all ETFs are created alike and there are divergences in portfolio traits which investors can identify.

Shares

Is growth of zombie companies real or fiction?

Much has been written about the rise of 'zombie firms' which should have gone bankrupt, but new research should be comforting to economists and investors alike, with focus on a particular segment.

Sponsors

Alliances

© 2020 Morningstar, Inc. All rights reserved.

Disclaimer
The data, research and opinions provided here are for information purposes; are not an offer to buy or sell a security; and are not warranted to be correct, complete or accurate. Morningstar, its affiliates, and third party content providers are not responsible for any investment decisions, damages or losses resulting from, or related to, the data and analyses or their use.
Any general advice or class service prepared by Morningstar Australasia Pty Ltd (ABN: 95 090 665 544, AFSL: 240892) and/or Morningstar Research Ltd, subsidiaries of Morningstar, Inc, has been prepared by without reference to your objectives, financial situation or needs. Refer to our Financial Services Guide (FSG) for more information. You should consider the advice in light of these matters and if applicable, the relevant Product Disclosure Statement before making any decision to invest. Past performance does not necessarily indicate a financial product’s future performance. To obtain advice tailored to your situation, contact a professional financial adviser. Articles are current as at date of publication.
This website contains information and opinions provided by third parties. Inclusion of this information does not necessarily represent Morningstar’s positions, strategies or opinions and should not be considered an endorsement by Morningstar.

Website Development by Master Publisher.