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Edition: 362

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Welcome to Firstlinks Edition 362

  • 18 June 2020

The biggest policy issue facing the Government over the next few months is how to phase out JobKeeper and reduce JobSeeker. While stock markets continue to ride a mood of optimism, a September withdrawal of support would create a rapid rise in unemployment with consequences for business loans, mortgages and home prices. At the same time, payment deferrals will expire, and let's hope deferrals do not become impairments.

Easy money: download Robinhood, buy stonks, bro down

Millions of inexperienced traders have entered global equity markets since the end of March, fuelled by hype in a rapidly-rising market. What is happening and how are they having an impact?

Warren Buffett's letter about new investors and speculation

A pin lies in wait for every bubble. And when the two eventually meet, a new wave of investors learns some very old lessons: speculation is most dangerous when it looks easiest.

10 reasons to sell your dud stocks for EOFY

Anyone with capital gains from property or shares should take this EOFY opportunity to find offsetting capital losses. There are many benefits from cleaning out the portfolio stuff-ups.

The three main factors when the next storm hits

Markets always come back to fundamentals, valuations and liquidity, even when faced with a global pandemic. The key question is whether liquidity can hold up the market as the economic storm hits.

Why the poor will pay more for aged care next year

When someone moves into residential aged care, they are assessed based on their assets and income. An important change is coming on 1 July 2020 that clients and their advisers should understand.

Housing cost is biggest threat to a comfortable retirement

Most Australians are comfortable in retirement provided they own their homes. We’re failing retirees who rent but we also need to include more of the family home in the pension assets test.

The populations of key countries are shrinking

Population decline is a new, yet largely ignored, trend with underrated economic and social costs. Much of the growth that drives economies, especially in Australia, comes from population increases.

New ways for listed funds to fix their price discounts

Running a fund should not become a gravy train for boards and investment managers. It is time to address the persistent discounts to NTA on LICs, and there is one especially exciting new structure.

Most viewed in recent weeks

A hard dose reality check on vaccines

With 160 programmes underway and billions of dollars spent on COVID-19 vaccines, investors are drawn to optimistic news. However, the company that has developed most new vaccines has a sober view.

After 30 years of investing, I prefer to skip this party

Eventually, prices become so extreme they bear no relationship to reality, and a bubble forms. I believe we are there today, not for all stocks but for many in the technology space.

How we have invested during COVID-19

With signs that the economic recession will not be as deep as first feared, many companies will emerge strongly with robust business models. Here are the sectors with the best opportunities.

Welcome to Firstlinks Edition 367

There is a similarity between the current health crisis and economic crises of the past. For COVID-19, record amounts of biotech funding from government agencies and private companies are looking for a vaccine. Likewise, central banks once struggled treating recessions but the 'vaccine' now is record amounts of financial stimulus to ensure liquidity. While the world awaits a COVID treatment, markets are purring along, at least until side effects hit.

  • 22 July 2020

Is the '4% rule' for retirement broken?

The traditional 4% rule was designed to ensure retirees do not run out of money, but low interest rates and expensive equity markets question the sustainability of the level. What are the alternatives?

Two great examples of why company management matters

It’s not only products and business models that create wealth. Management teams make decisions on how to deploy capital and such actions drive vastly different outcomes over time.

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