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Edition: 344

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Welcome to Firstlinks Edition 344

There's always more happening in money markets than most people realise, with significant implications for investors and borrowers. The Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) injects or withdraws billions of dollars into the financial system each week to manage liquidity. In cash markets, the RBA is currently providing plenty of stimulus and banks are funding loans easily.

Tony Togher on why cash isn’t just cash

An active manager of cash and fixed interest funds can achieve higher returns than the cash rate through a selection of other securities while managing both liquidity and income for clients.

The power of letting winners run

Handling extreme winners is a complex task. Conventional wisdom such as “you never go broke taking a profit” often leaves a lot of money on the table as strong growth stocks continue to run.

NAB hybrid: one says buy, one says sell, you decide

Differences of opinion make a market, and hybrid specialists disagree on the likelihood that NAB will call one of its hybrids early. It makes a major difference to the expected return on NABHA.

Strong capital flows support non-residential real estate

In this 'lower for longer' rate environment, investors are recalibrating expectations of the required return from high-quality real estate, and foreigners are targetting Australia.

The link between financial and mental health

We often focus on the implications for financial security of being unable to save enough for a comfortable retirement, but mental wellbeing is as important. Financial advice can help.

Are you caught in the ‘retirement trap’?

Our retirement savings system is supposed to encourage financial independence but there is a ‘Retirement Trap’ due to the reduction of age pension entitlements as assets and income rise.

The pitfalls of total return investing

The Total Return Investing approach is elegant, it makes intuitive sense and like many investment strategies, it backtests well. But low rates suggest the theory will not hold in future.

Most viewed in recent weeks

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?

House prices surge but falls are common and coming

We tend to forget that house prices often fall. Direct lending controls are more effective than rate rises because macroprudential limits affect the volume of money for housing leaving business rates untouched.

Survey responses on pension eligibility for wealthy homeowners

The survey drew a fantastic 2,000 responses with over 1,000 comments and polar opposite views on what is good policy. Do most people believe the home should be in the age pension asset test, and what do they say?

100 Aussies: five charts on who earns, pays and owns

Any policy decision needs to recognise who is affected by a change. It pays to check the data on who pays taxes, who owns assets and who earns the income to ensure an equitable and efficient outcome.

Three good comments from the pension asset test article

With articles on the pensions assets test read about 40,000 times, 3,500 survey responses and thousands of comments, there was a lot of great reader participation. A few comments added extra insights.

The sorry saga of housing affordability and ownership

It is hard to think of any area of widespread public concern where the same policies have been pursued for so long, in the face of such incontrovertible evidence that they have failed to achieve their objectives.

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