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Edition: 342

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Welcome to Firstlinks Edition 342

  • 30 January 2020

Most people satisfied with the home they own or rent care little for the parallel universe of weekend house hunters who barely have time for breakfast before they join the queues. With mortgage rates as low as 2.84% and risk written all over other asset classes, housing FOMO is strong in major cities, even though consumer confidence is falling in the wake of the bushfires and coronavirus.

Just for Josh: Survey on attitudes to LIC fees

The LIC/LIT stamping fee issue is hotting up, as the Federal Treasurer sets up a snap 'public consultation' to help him. Take our survey and we will present the conclusions to Josh Frydenberg.

Mr Market isn't so foolish, after all

The story of Mr Market originated with Ben Graham and was further popularised by Warren Buffett, but does it still hold true? Based on experience, the two-investor scheme looks hopelessly oversimplified.

Tesla surges, VW doesn’t. Here’s why

Tesla has stunned the doubters, especially those shorting the stock. To understand the share prices of these disruptive companies, look to the big picture of changes to whole-of-world issues.

Why this age of artificial returns must falter

Sharemarkets are booming not because companies are increasing earnings, but because falling interest rates are driving asset prices ever-higher. It is artificial and it will not end well.

Who does compulsory superannuation really benefit?

While these findings are controversial and have already been attacked by the super industry, research suggests superannuation may not be the best long-term savings vehicle for everyone.

Long-term optimism for margin lending but share outlook subdued

Appetite for margin lending is improving but demand remains a fraction of its peak in 2007. While some advisers and clients may reengage with better products, they are subdued in their outlook for shares. 

Media worth consuming - January 2020

Links to dozens of global media articles that often do not receive mainstream coverage in Australia. It's sceptical, fun and revealing, often challenging consensus and accepted wisdom.

Most viewed in recent weeks

Super changes, the Budget and 2021 versus 2022

Josh Frydenberg's third budget contained changes to superannuation and other rules but their effective date is expected to be 1 July 2022. Take care not to confuse them with changes due on 1 July 2021.

Noel's share winners and loser plus budget reality check

Among the share success stories is a poor personal experience as Telstra's service needs improving. Plus why the new budget announcements on downsizing and buying a home don't deserve the super hype.

Grantham interview on the coming day of reckoning

Jeremy Grantham has seen it all before, with bubbles every 15 years or so. The higher you go, the longer and greater the fall. You can have a high-priced asset or a high-yielding asset, but not both at the same time.

Whoyagonnacall? 10 unspoken risks buying off-the-plan

All new apartment buildings have defects, and inexperienced owners assume someone else will fix them. But developers and builders will not volunteer to spend time and money unless someone fights them. Part 1

Buffett says stock picking is too hard for most investors

Warren Buffett explained why he believes most investors should not pick stocks but simply own an S&P 500 index fund. "There's a lot more to picking stocks than figuring out what’s going to be a wonderful industry."

Should investors brace for uncomfortably high inflation?

The global recession came quickly and deeply but it has given way to a strong rebound. What are the lessons for investors, how should a portfolio change and what role will inflation play?

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