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Cuffelinks Newsletter Edition 266

  • 10 August 2018

“Alone in the dark with our money”, your financial literacy, tech dominance, housing fears, tax perils, startup warnings, good to bad, lifestages.

Commission says trustees “alone in the dark with our money”

The Royal Commission stoked the coals on financial advice fees and commissions, taking three days to learn trustees and management are severely conflicted by best interest responsibilities.

Are Cuffelinks readers smarter than average?

The 2018 HILDA Survey included five questions aimed at measuring financial literacy. We have replicated these in Cuffelinks' own quiz to compare our readership's results with that of the rest of Australia.

Apple at US$1 trillion: tech titans give runaway returns to scale

With Apple through to US$1 trillion, and Google, Amazon, Microsoft hot on its heels, could these megacaps be experiencing ‘runaway returns to scale’?

Will the Royal Commission end our debt obsession?

The tightening of credit conditions for home lending driven by the Royal Commission has not fully translated into aggregate statistics, and the slowdown may already be worse than we realise.

Golden rules for considering tax in investing

Investments that offer some element of tax effectiveness or tax breaks can be good, but it's unwise to make investment decisions, both buying or selling, based solely on beneficial tax treatment.

Five tips for better startup investing

Investing in startups and untried ideas is risky but there are some ways to swing the odds in your favour, without becoming bogged down in running the business. It's mainly about the people.

When good defensive investments go bad

Most fund managers had a strong year in FY2018, but past bumper years when MTAA invested heavily in so called 'low risk' illiquid assets provide a warning in less fortuitous markets.

Lessons from the endgame for Toys 'R' Us

After failing to secure a buyer, Toys 'R' Us Australia is set to close down all of its toy and baby goods stores. The company has struggled globally against intense online competition.

Five financial stages in everyone's life

It is useful to think of your financial life and psychological adjustment in five stages: a family and career phase, pre-retirement, close to retirement, just past retirement, and then lifestyle downsizing.

Most viewed in recent weeks

Unexpected results in our retirement income survey

Who knew? With some surprise results, the Government is on unexpected firm ground in asking people to draw on all their assets in retirement, although the comments show what feisty and informed readers we have.

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.

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?

Six COVID opportunist stocks prospering in adversity

Some high-quality companies have emerged even stronger since the onset of COVID and are well placed for outperformance. We call these the ‘COVID Opportunists’ as they are now dominating their specific sectors.

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