September 20, 2017

Investing as a couple: the power of two

Self-managed super fund trustees could be described as forerunners for couples to save and invest together for retirement. Couples would make up the vast majority of members in these multi-members SMSFs, which, in turn make up the vast majority of SMSFs. Almost 70 per cent of SMSFs in 2014-15 had two members while another 8 per cent had three or four members, according to the tax office’s SMSF statistical report – March 2017 (the latest available). Superannuation law does not allow joint super accounts. Yet independent consultants and actuaries Rice Warner points out that self-managed super provides a “proxy for joint super”. […]
September 20, 2017

The great Australian (retiree) dream

The very high level of debt-free home ownership among current Australian retirees helps counterbalance their low average super savings, undoubtedly contributing to any sense of financial security. A recent Vanguard research paper, Retirement transitions in four countries, found that that 59 per cent of Australia’s recent retirees surveyed believe they are highly satisfied with their current financial situation. This compares with 24 per cent with a medium level of satisfaction and 32 per cent with a low satisfaction level. In surveys of thousands of pre-retirees and recent retirees in Australia, US, UK and Canada, researchers recorded a marked improvement in financial […]
August 16, 2017

Why currency matters to Aussie investors

There is nothing like an overseas holiday to remind you of the power of currency movements to either help or hinder your financial position. Australian investors probably have more at risk in the currency stakes than most other investors in developed markets. That flows from the small size of our local sharemarket – less than 3 per cent of the market capitalisation of global sharemarkets – which means to get international diversification Australian investors have to invest offshore. Contrast that to US investors where so many of their major companies are global players which means a lot international diversification comes […]