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Edition: 164

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Edition 164

  • 15 July 2016

Most investors do not watch government bond rates as closely as share prices, but the global bond market is about double the size of all listed shares. The Australian Government 10-year bond rate is now 1.97%, while the 30-year rate in the US is 2.21% and Japan is 0.13%. Swiss and German bond rates are negative. Normally, such low levels would signal tough times ahead, but the US S&P500 reached an all-time high this week. It’s little wonder investors are confused.

Unexpected results from Federal Election survey

Respondents offered hundreds of comments on the impact on their voting of the proposed superannuation changes. Many changed their vote and the majority expect amendments to the proposals.

For sale: cheaper apartments

There has been a massive increase in apartment commencement, with 137,000 now under construction. There is doubt whether all buyers will proceed to settlement if prices fall due to oversupply.

Prepare to pay more for aged care

Residential aged care costs are difficult to understand at any time, but many aged care facilities are introducing new fees which make comparisons even more difficult as cost rise.

Align by design: Steps for success in fund manager engagement

In addition to the normal factors of performance and experience, an important factor in selecting a fund manager is the correct alignment with the client. It can minimise conflict during the relationship.

Diversification in thinking and practice

Most investors accept the benefits of diversification, but it can be problematic for some successful people who have made money in one business. For most investors, diversification leads to happier outcomes.

Bond indexes don't reflect market diversity

Investors buying a composite bond index fund may expect it to include a wide diversity of issuers, but the Australian index is dominated by the large government borrowers.

Most viewed in recent weeks

Is it better to rent or own a home under the age pension?

With 62% of Australians aged 65 and over relying at least partially on the age pension, are they better off owning their home or renting? There is an extra pension asset allowance for those not owning a home.

Too many retirees miss out on this valuable super fund benefit

With 700 Australians retiring every day, retirement income solutions are more important than ever. Why do millions of retirees eligible for a more tax-efficient pension account hold money in accumulation?

Is the fossil fuel narrative simply too convenient?

A fund manager argues it is immoral to deny poor countries access to relatively cheap energy from fossil fuels. Wealthy countries must recognise the transition is a multi-decade challenge and continue to invest.

Reece Birtles on selecting stocks for income in retirement

Equity investing comes with volatility that makes many retirees uncomfortable. A focus on income which is less volatile than share prices, and quality companies delivering robust earnings, offers more reassurance.

Superannuation: a 30+ year journey but now stop fiddling

Few people have been closer to superannuation policy over the years than Noel Whittaker, especially when he established his eponymous financial planning business. He takes us on a quick guided tour.

Comparing generations and the nine dimensions of our well-being

Using the nine dimensions of well-being used by the OECD, and dividing Australians into Baby Boomers, Generation Xers or Millennials, it is surprisingly easy to identify the winners and losers for most dimensions.

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