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Edition: 388

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Welcome to Firstlinks Edition 388

  • 17 December 2020
  • 4

Our final packed edition for the year ... but first, if there is one thing 2020 taught us, it is to expect the unexpected. Although some people like Bill Gates forecast in 2014 that a pandemic on a global scale would hit in future, nobody seriously factored it into investment analysis. And even when COVID-19 struck, most analysts predicted economic doom and market collapses which also proved wrong.

Special Edition eBook: Firstlinks 2020 Interview Series

The Interview Series has proved highly popular with our readers. This year’s collection of 20 interviews for 2020 covers most asset types and is a window into how diversification helps to manage risk.

Evan Reedman: Australian ETFs from slow burn to rapid fire

ETFs have gone from bit player to major force in Australian investing in the space of a few years, and will top $100 billion soon. One of the major providers explains how they bring products to the market.

Five reasons Australian small companies are compelling investments

Many investors focus primarily on the big listed companies but the smaller end in tech, mining and healthcare outperforms through innovation. Many Australian companies are world-leaders in their speciality.

IPO a-go-go: the who, why, when and how much of IPO investing

Six key questions for investors to ask to navigate the avalanche of Australian IPOs. Don't assume the investment banker has done the due diligence and is on your side, as many IPOs struggle after issuance.

How to give retirees the confidence to spend

There are many items in the 'too hard basket' for super. Remember the proposed Retirement Income Covenant? It required trustees to develop an appropriate strategy for members, and it's time to progress with it.

The road to super hell is paved with good intentions

The Your Future, Your Super reform gives a super fund 12 months to rectify its performance, but failing the first test implies a 90% chance of failing the second test a year later. A failed test is an existential event.

What to watch in post-pandemic 2021

Despite the wave of optimism currently sweeping markets, some negative factors demand caution. Extraordinarily low interest rates is pushing up equities as investors choose the 'lesser evil' in asset allocations.

November 2020 was an historic month for ETFs

November 2020 was an exceptional month for ETF records, with new highs for total size, monthly growth and largest net flows. With over 250 listed products available, ETFs are well established among investor choices.

Seven steps to easier management of your estate

Don't make life difficult for the person trusted to manage your estate. Find the time to arrange your documents, contacts, online accounts and files in a convenient place, including giving them some cash.

Most viewed in recent weeks

10 little-known pension traps prove the value of advice

Most people entering retirement do not see a financial adviser, mainly due to cost. It's a major problem because there are small mistakes a retiree can make which are expensive and avoidable if a few tips were known.

Check eligibility for the Commonwealth Seniors Health Card

Eligibility for the Commonwealth Seniors Health Card has no asset test and a relatively high income test. It's worth checking eligibility and the benefits of qualifying to save on the cost of medications.

Hamish Douglass on why the movie hasn’t ended yet

The focus is on Magellan for its investment performance and departure of the CEO, but Douglass says the pandemic, inflation, rising rates and Middle East tensions have not played out. Vindication is always long term.

Start the year right with the 2022 Retiree Checklist

This is our annual checklist of what retirees need to be aware of in 2022. It is a long list of 25 items and not everything will apply to your situation. Run your eye over the benefits and entitlements.

At 98-years-old, Charlie Munger still delivers the one-liners

The Warren Buffett/Charlie Munger partnership is the stuff of legends, but even Charlie admits it is coming to an end ("I'm nearly dead"). He is one of the few people in investing prepared to say what he thinks.

Should I pay off the mortgage or top up my superannuation?

Depending on personal circumstances, it may be time to rethink the bias to paying down housing debt over wealth accumulation in super. Do the sums and ask these four questions to plan for your future.

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