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Welcome to Firstlinks Edition 426 with weekend update

  • 23 September 2021
  • 5

Two conversations last week with people at opposite ends of their financial journeys confirmed that a vital part of the investment decision is often overlooked. Where should the assets be held? Placing money in a personal account, joint names, company, super fund or SMSF, family trust, spouse or child can have vastly different consequences for tax, capital gains, estate planning, social security and access.

Welcome to Firstlinks Edition 425 with weekend update

  • 16 September 2021
  • 5

If you were on the board of a major bank and asked to write a wishlist of the things the government or central bank could fix to help your business, almost everything you could dream up has been delivered. For many years, I was Head of Balance Sheet Management at a large bank and we thought we were responsible for managing our own risks.

Welcome to Firstlinks Edition 424 with weekend update

  • 9 September 2021
  • 18

Wet streets cause rain. The Gell-Mann Amnesia Effect is a name created by writer Michael Crichton after he realised that everything he read or heard in the media was wrong when he had direct personal knowledge or expertise on the subject. He surmised that everything else is probably wrong as well, and financial markets are no exception.

Welcome to Firstlinks Edition 423 with weekend update

  • 2 September 2021
  • 3

We focus on asset allocation at a critical time when bonds offer limited income and stockmarkets are priced at all-time highs. On his 94th birthday, we reprise our interviews with Nobel Laureate, Harry Markowitz, the father of Modern Portfolio Theory, check how the head of the US Federal Reserve invests his personal wealth and review the Future Fund's assets. It's also the week when 13 super funds were named and shamed.

Welcome to Firstlinks Edition 422 with weekend update

  • 26 August 2021
  • 10

We recently published six stock picks which were all foreign companies and some people complained that they only wanted to read about Australian companies. Come on, folks. That's like the old days of living on meat and three veg. The world offers wonderful investment opportunities and Australia is only 2% of global markets and highly concentrated.

Welcome to Firstlinks Edition 421 with weekend update

  • 19 August 2021
  • 7

In the thousands of articles in the Firstlinks archive, there are millions of words. Investing comes with unlimited nuances and is as varied as the number of investors. But what if I were required to give one investment lesson in one sentence? Here it is.

Welcome to Firstlinks Edition 420 with weekend update

  • 12 August 2021
  • 2

Ben Graham, the father of value investing, said at times of extreme speculation, knowledge is superfluous, experience is a handicap and prices determine value standards. No wonder millions become billions become trillions as our eyes glaze over. Whither quadrillions? Plus surprising retirement income results and 10 franked dividend stocks.

Welcome to Firstlinks Edition 419 with weekend update

  • 5 August 2021
  • 3

It's tempting to assume our good investments are due to skill and poor investments are due to bad luck. Of course, it's not like that. Every investment decision is made with imperfect knowledge, and it is often luck whether the favourable elements outweigh the problems. What do Hamish Douglass, Warren Buffett, Annie Duke and Daniel Kahneman think?

Welcome to Firstlinks Edition 418 with weekend update

  • 29 July 2021
  • 7

Do you realise that 'retirement income' includes withdrawing your capital from your non-super assets? Does that sound like income? How about some extension relief on your non-arm's length arrangement. Why did superannuation become so mired in confusing definitions such as NALI, ECPI, LISTO, NCC and the awful CIPRs?

Welcome to Firstlinks Edition 417 with weekend update

  • 22 July 2021
  • 10

Despite the successes of superannuation, the industry has failed to sell itself to the public. Instead of focussing on the exceptional investment returns delivered to millions of Australians, we hear more about the fights between industry funds, retail funds and senior Liberal Party officials. The battles are on many fronts and deflect from the main purpose.

Welcome to Firstlinks Edition 416 with weekend update

  • 15 July 2021
  • 3

Noise. It causes such basic errors in our decision-making that a new book from three top-selling US authors is called: 'Noise: A Flaw in Human Judgement'. The examples in the book include wide variations in prison sentences for the same crime and insurance assessors awarding different damages for the same event. And then there are our investment decisions.

Welcome to Firstlinks Edition 415 with weekend update

  • 8 July 2021
  • 13

Economics is less popular in schools than ever, but there's an easy way to fix this. Rename it 'Investing and Economics' and enrolments would go through the roof. One major trend from COVID-19 is the increase in young people investing or trading on stock exchanges for the first time, but where do they find their ideas?

Most viewed in recent weeks

10 reasons wealthy homeowners shouldn't receive welfare

The RBA Governor says rising house prices are due to "the design of our taxation and social security systems". The OECD says "the prolonged boom in house prices has inflated the wealth of many pensioners without impacting their pension eligibility." What's your view?

Three all-time best tables for every adviser and investor

It's a remarkable statistic. In any year since 1875, if you had invested in the Australian stock index, turned away and come back eight years later, your average return would be 120% with no negative periods.

The looming excess of housing and why prices will fall

Never stand between Australian households and an uncapped government programme with $3 billion in ‘free money’ to build or renovate their homes. But excess supply is coming with an absence of net migration.

Five stocks that have worked well in our portfolios

Picking macro trends is difficult. What may seem logical and compelling one minute may completely change a few months later. There are better rewards from focussing on identifying the best companies at good prices.

Survey responses on pension eligibility for wealthy homeowners

The survey drew a fantastic 2,000 responses with over 1,000 comments and polar opposite views on what is good policy. Do most people believe the home should be in the age pension asset test, and what do they say?

Let's make this clear again ... franking credits are fair

Critics of franking credits are missing the main point. The taxable income of shareholders/taxpayers must also include the company tax previously paid to the ATO before the dividend was distributed. It is fair.

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