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Edition: 197

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Edition 197

  • 7 April 2017

The recent regulator focus on macroprudential controls reminds me of when I started work in a bank treasury in the early 1980s. At the time, a 10% limit was imposed on loan growth, but banks found ways around the rules. They converted business loans to bank bill facilities which were not counted in the loan numbers, but provided the same credit for the client. They required borrowers to repay overnight loans on a Wednesday because it was the reporting day, and then lent to them again the next day. Let's hope those were the bad old days and banks don't behave like that now.

Retirement savings and age pension black holes

It’s surprising there has not been more outcry about the age pension taper test in a low rate environment, where a ‘black hole’ creates a perverse impact of less retirement income the more a retiree has saved.

Debt binge main cause of house price rises

Household borrowing, mainly for property, now far exceeds business borrowing, but it is businesses that create jobs and wealth. The crackdown on housing debt is overdue.

When directors sell, should you sell too?

The selling of shares by company directors is not necessarily a sign for other investors to follow, but research into Australian sales seems to be a stronger signal than directors' buying.

Five urban myths about super changes

When changes to regulations are as extensive and complex as the coming 1 July rules, many misconceptions about how they work arise for both advisers and their clients. Here are a few common mistakes.

Can socially responsible investing and good returns coexist?

There is gathering evidence that socially responsible investing (SRI) is not just about doing the right thing, but it does not detract from returns and investors who focus on it are likely to be rewarded.

Of Blackberrys, pineapples and trade

Free trade is more at risk than at any time in almost a century, and yet trade restrictions will increase prices for those who can least afford it, and prop up inefficient industries.

New RG97 rules will increase disclosed fees

Superannuation and managed fund providers are finding new product disclosure requirements challenging, but the standards will allow better fund comparisons for consumers.

Most viewed in recent weeks

A tonic for turbulent times: my nine tips for investing

Investing is often portrayed as unapproachably complex. Can it be distilled into nine tips? An economist with 35 years of experience through numerous market cycles and events has given it a shot.

Rival standard for savings and incomes in retirement

A new standard argues the majority of Australians will never achieve the ASFA 'comfortable' level of retirement savings and it amounts to 'fearmongering' by vested interests. If comfortable is aspirational, so be it.

Dalio v Marks is common sense v uncommon sense

Billionaire fund manager standoff: Ray Dalio thinks investing is common sense and markets are simple, while Howard Marks says complex and convoluted 'second-level' thinking is needed for superior returns.

Welcome to Firstlinks Edition 467

Fund manager reports for last financial year are drifting into client mailboxes, and many of the results are disappointing. With some funds giving back their 2021 gains, why did they not reduce their exposure to hot stocks when faced with rising inflation and rates?

  • 21 July 2022

Welcome to Firstlinks Edition 466 with weekend update

Heard the word, cakeism? As in, 'having your cake and eating it too'. The Reserve Bank wants to simultaneously fight inflation by taking away spending power, while not driving the economy into a recession. If you want to help, stop buying stuff.

  • 14 July 2022

Welcome to Firstlinks Edition 465 with weekend update

Many thanks for the thousands of revealing comments in our survey on retirement experiences. We discuss the full results. And with the ASX200 down 10%, the US S&P500 off 20% and bond prices tanking, each investor faces the new financial year deciding whether to sit, sell or invest more.

  • 7 July 2022

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