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Edition: 152

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Edition 152

  • 22 April 2016

It's common to see products called conservative, defensive, balanced, diversified or moderate. What are the differences? The one I dislike most for its potential to mislead is 'defensive'. An allocation to bonds can lose money if rates rise or spreads widen, and cash is not much comfort at negative real returns. Whether defensive is true to label depends on market conditions.

Don't be misled by investment classifications

Investment terms such as 'defensive', 'growth' and 'risk' are used heavily by professionals and retail investors alike, but these words can be misleading as they depend on the context and investors' goals.

’Short selling’ and the Australian banks

Hedge funds have been short selling Australian banks for a while now, mainly due to perceptions about the property market. However, it is not house prices but unemployment that matters most for bank prosperity.

ETFs playing bigger role for investors

The latest Exchange Traded Funds Report highlights the growing popularity and demand for ETFs from investors and advisers. It also flags an opportunity for actively-managed exchange traded funds in the coming year.

Landmines in the Field of Dreams

It matters little if you are invested in property, shares or bonds, we have moved into a lower return environment. It's a time for caution in a world where debt and defaults are rising.

A tax-effective complement to super

Superannuation’s current tax benefits are far from certain given the government’s need for more revenue. Changes are likely to increase the competitiveness of investment bonds (sometimes called insurance bonds).

The time has come for actuaries

The unique and practical skills of actuaries will be essential for the superannuation industry to tackle such complex issues as providing adequate retirement outcomes and effectively managing big data.

Most viewed in recent weeks

Lessons when a fund manager of the year is down 25%

Every successful fund manager suffers periods of underperformance, and investors who jump from fund to fund chasing results are likely to do badly. Selecting a manager is a long-term decision but what else?

2022 election survey results: disillusion and disappointment

In almost 1,000 responses, our readers differ in voting intentions versus polling of the general population, but they have little doubt who will win and there is widespread disappointment with our politics.

Now you can earn 5% on bonds but stay with quality

Conservative investors who want the greater capital security of bonds can now lock in 5% but they should stay at the higher end of credit quality. Rises in rates and defaults mean it's not as easy as it looks.

30 ETFs in one ecosystem but is there a favourite?

In the last decade, ETFs have become a mainstay of many portfolios, with broad market access to most asset types, as well as a wide array of sectors and themes. Is there a favourite of a CEO who oversees 30 funds?

Betting markets as election predictors

Believe it or not, betting agencies are in the business of making money, not predicting outcomes. Is there anything we can learn from the current odds on the election results?

Welcome to Firstlinks Election Edition 458

At around 10.30pm on Saturday night, Scott Morrison called Anthony Albanese to concede defeat in the 2022 election. As voting continued the next day, it became likely that Labor would reach the magic number of 76 seats to form a majority government.   

  • 19 May 2022

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