For much of the last 2,500 years, one ounce of gold has been able to buy items worth the equivalent of around USD500 in today’s dollars adjusted for inflation. But retail buyers are rushing to buy physical gold at current levels.
Every super fund member fears a downturn, but with an expected working life of 45 years and retirement of 30 years, we need to look beyond the short -term. A look at stock market cycles helps with the long-term view.
A fundamental tenet of free market capitalism is that owners choose how their assets are used to their best advantage. Does this apply to shareholders? And do super fund members get to exercise such choice?
As equity holders we love to see companies reporting profit growth. In fact, we become wary if they don’t. Find out how the wrong sort of growth can quickly and permanently destroy wealth.
Models, statistics, historical data and forecasts can paint a picture of the average investor, but just who is average? Financial planning and investment decisions need to consider the individual.
Could this be the greatest mathematical discovery of all time? An appreciation of compounding is essential for understanding investments, and an accumulation index rather than a price index better measures performance.
In 1909, there were 15 workers for every retiree, but by 2025 it will be down to only 3.5 workers. But we’re still defining ‘retiree’ as over 65. Using dynamic retirement age principles gives a brighter perspective on old age dependency.
The Stronger Super reforms have significantly raised the profile of lifecycle funds by legitimising their use as a single investment strategy for MySuper products. But are lifecycle funds any better than normal balanced funds?
Sit through a dozen fund manager presentations and they all start to sound the same. There’s been little significant innovation in the managed funds industry in the last 15 years. Why is this and what are the consequences?
An investment strategy and its appropriate ‘strategic asset allocation’ should balance what you are hoping to achieve against the risk of adverse outcomes along the way. It calls for honesty, realism and the right risk tolerance.
In Cuffelinks on 2 April 2013, we posted an article on bank liquidity. Alun Stevens, Principal at Rice Warner Actuaries, took issue with some of the conclusions, and a lively debate followed. Warning: very long and technical.
Traditional indicators of economic growth do not tell the whole story of a country’s progress. In the new Social Progress Index, Australia ranks 7th overall of the 50 countries studied, but 3rd for ‘Opportunity’.
When the media latches onto stories dealing with debt, the tone tends to be alarmist. Such news lifts ratings but it doesn’t always shed light on the issues at hand. How much is ‘too much’ debt, and what debt are we talking about?
The debt debate continues. Should a government be using or reducing debt to overcome its country’s financial woes? What works, what doesn’t, under what circumstances, and how much should we worry about it?
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