May 12, 2016

A ‘super’ budget

It was a week earlier than usual; the Treasurer Scott Morrison simply couldn’t wait to get his first budget out! In line with expectations – the Federal Budget that was brought down last week included 11 measures specifically targeting superannuation. Depending on your perspective the announcements were a mix of both good, and bad, news – with a couple of shocks thrown in for good measure. Let’s look at the key ‘super’ announcements: Catch-up concessional contributions: For people who have not contributed their maximum allowable concessional contributions in any one year – they will now be able to catch up by […]
May 5, 2016

Defying life’s blueprint

One of the both interesting and challenging aspects of planning for retirement is that most of our lives don’t follow a common blueprint, at least to the letter. Certainly, there are those who completely stop work around their 65th birthday and live until their life expectancy, having progressively moved through typical stages of retirement of being active, more sedentary and then frail. And then there are those, of course, who work until well past conventional retirement ages and who may remain extremely active long after retiring (if they ever do retire). For instance, Catherine Hamlin, an Australian obstetrician and gynaecologist, […]
April 28, 2016

The volatility trap

The degree of sharemarket volatility during the first three months of the year will regrettably have thrown some investors off their long-term course. Let’s briefly recap by looking at the broad S&P/ASX 300. The index opened at 5249.10 on the first trading day of the calendar year but within three days had fallen below the much-watched 5000-point level. The see-sawing index managed to finish the quarter above the 5000 mark at 5043.63 after a spurt on the last day of March. It was down 3.91 per cent for the quarter. Investors who allow such abrupt short-term movements on the markets […]