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2 Sept 2017 (AFR) – What 30 years of market gyrations can teach investors

[COMMENT: Boy oh boy! I would not normally post a news article like this one; but I have to say that I disagree with almost everything that is said in this story. “Hold your line” – Rubbish!!  “Real estate…” – It might be best to avoid it all together. “Choose equities long term…” – Crap!! … Continue reading

8 June 2017 (AFR) – Stockspot survey highlights the hidden dangers of some passive funds

(8 June 2017, AFR, p28, by Myriam Robin) ‘Investors who put their money in small exchange traded funds that lack sufficient market liquidity could receive less than market value when they want to sell, according to Chris Brycki, the CEO of roboadviser Stockspot. Stockspot this week released its third annual survey of the Australian passive universe, rating … Continue reading

26 Apr 2017 (AFR) – Star active fund managers fall on hard times – Active fundies struggle as passive index huggers deliver

[COMMENT: I cannot help but comment on this, as regular readers will know – I don’t invest in managed funds based on past experience and ongoing news and research like this news story.] (26 April 2017, AFR, p1, by James Frost) ‘Australia’s most successful and well-known stock pickers are under pressure as active managers fail to … Continue reading

10 Apr 2017 (AFR) – Former NAB director to chair new financial sector body to oversee industry

[COMMENT: Now, according to this news article below, we have a powerful new body to “professionalise” the scandal-ridden financial advice sector. It might be possible to “clean up” the sector so that more honest “advice” can be given; but I seriously doubt if the industry will ever be able to avoid harsh criticisms and dismal … Continue reading

22 Feb 2017 (TheAge,SMH) – Padley: You need to understand brokers’ game – Why investors should be sceptical of broker research

(22 February 2017, The Age, MONEY supplement, p3, Marcus Padley) ‘I get regular emails pointing out how bad broker recommendations have been in hindsight. Most of the finger pointing is simply an investor attempting to transfer the blame to someone else of course, but if the investor is ever going to learn from their mistakes … Continue reading

30 Jan 2017 (AFR) – Top stock pickers John Sevior, Hamish Douglass and Kerr Neilson lag benchmark

(30 January 2017, AFR, p18, by James Frost) ‘Australia’s top fund managers have had an end to the year they would rather forget with big name stock pickers John Sevior, Hamish Douglass and Kerr Neilson all lagging the benchmark.  The recovery of oil prices, a rally in mining stocks and the Trump-inspired reflation trade have … Continue reading

29 June 2016 (TheAge, MONEY) – Three types of managed fund to avoid

(29 June 2016, The Age, MONEY supplement, p6, Graham Witcomb) ‘Businessman and investor Mark Cuban – net worth US$3.2b – once said, “The No. 1 job of the hedge fund manager is not to make sure that you can retire with a smile on your face – it’s for him to retire with a smile on … Continue reading

28 June 2016 (AFR) – Former financial planner takes Westpac to court for bad advice

[COMMENT: Investing in financial products can be a mine field. It pays to study the detail and the fine print. It certainly pays to understand the product in which you might invest.] (28 June 2016, AFR, p3, by Misa Han) ‘A former Westpac financial planner is suing the bank, saying he has lost more than $800,000 and is at the risk of losing family … Continue reading

3 June 2016 (AFR) – ASIC targets mid-tier brokers over leaks and dodgy deals

(3 June 2016, AFR, p21, by Sally Rose) ‘The financial regulator is worried about how mid-tier research and broking firms are managing conflicts of interest.  Australian Securities and Investments Commission chairman Greg Medcraft has told a large gathering of stockbrokers the regulator has concerns about how some research and broking firms are making sure their clients’ … Continue reading

7 Apr 2016 (AFR) – PM puts huge pressure on banks to end scandals – to clean themselves up

[COMMENT: The thrust of this story is no different to what many commentators keep saying. And Phil Anderson had similar messages in his great book “The Secret Life of Real Estate and Banking”. It actually doesn’t matter who says what, and what new regulations are put in place, because the bad apples in the investment … Continue reading

6 Apr 2016 (AFR) – SMSF licence uptake flags; Most accountants shun SMSF licence

(6 April 2016, AFR, p3, by Kate Cowling) ‘Fewer than 400 accountants in Australia will be licensed to provide self-managed super fund advice from July, which is just over 1 per cent the number who were advising in this area a couple of years ago.  From July 1, accountants will need either a limited licence from … Continue reading

6 Apr 2016 (AFR) – Super industry ‘preys on financial illiteracy’: former ACCC boss

[COMMENT: Now this news story deserves a comment – but what can we say? It is a must-read for all investors.] (6 April 2016, AFR, “Banking & Wealth Summit” supplement, page S2, by Joanna Mather) ‘The former head of the competition regulator has accused superannuation funds of encouraging complexity and stifling competition to keep fees … Continue reading

30 Mar 2016 (TheAge, MONEY) – Unwary in for a nasty surprise – Truth about long-term investment and black swans

(30 March 2016, The Age, MONEY supplement, p6, Marcus Padley,  View more articles from Marcus Padley) ‘The expression “Black Swan event”…’ <snipped…> ‘…improve your chances, but to think that you can believe a long-term promise or make a long term judgment about a stock today, on the basis of the evidence available now, is irrational. … Continue reading

20 Feb 2016 (AFR) – “Everything seems backwards”: reality bites investors

[COMMENT: Now here is an interesting admission. So there are some advisors out there whose clients might have been better off if they had done the opposite of the recommendations?] (20 February 2016, AFR, p23, by Patrick Commins) ‘When an investment bank’s top equity strategist admits to his clients that “doing the opposite of what … Continue reading

19 Feb 2016 (AFR) – Childcare worker denied tax deduction for day trading

[COMMENT: *** Attention all short term investors and traders *** This is an enlightening article about how the ATO and the Australian Courts consider the proceeds from trading for income and tax purposes.] (19 February 2016, AFR, p12, by Misa Han) ‘A childcare worker who used a CommSec account to trade $600,000 of shares could … Continue reading

13 Feb 2016 (AFR) – Pity those stuck in frozen funds – DIY super lessons in frozen mortgage and property funds

(13 February 2016, AFR, p26, by John Wasiliev) ‘In November 2008 the federal government introduced a guarantee for cash deposits in banks, credit unions and building societies as a global financial crisis stability measure. A major repercussion was that several thousand investors found themselves caught in managed mortgage and property income funds that were frozen … Continue reading

25 Jan 2016 (TheAge) – The great Australian superannuation swindle

(25 January 2016, The Age, p16, opinion, Josh Bornstein) ‘So you think super is good for the workers? Well, it’s certainly great for the financial services industry.’ ‘The competition to manage your superannuation is big business. So too is not paying superannuation to workers. Either way, an enormous number of employees are duped and dudded … Continue reading

18 Dec 2015 (TheAge,SMH) – It was more than just a few rogue planners at CBA, review finds

[COMMENT: What does this news story actually mean? That some financial advisors cannot be trusted? How many are in this category? Surely not a majority?] (18 December 2015, The Age, BusinessDay, p28, Adele Ferguson, Business columnist,  View more articles from Adele Ferguson) ‘After wading through more than 68 pages of a confusing and heavily jargoned … Continue reading

10 Nov 2015 (AFR) – Goldman’s BRIC era ends as fund folds after years of losses

[COMMENT: Here is a good warning for investors of managed funds and the like. It is possible to lose a significant amount of your investment. Perhaps the lesson is that one needs to monitor all investment positions at least weekly or monthly, and if there seems to be a continual decline in value, then consider … Continue reading

4 Nov 2015 (AFR) – The superannuation strategy failing 90pc of savers

[COMMENT: Here’s some helpful(?) news about the so-called balanced growth superannuation option in which many investors have their funds. Interesting reading.] (4 November 2015, AFR (Smart Investor), p24, by Jeremy Chunn) ‘Here’s a bit of bad news. The ubiquitous balanced growth superannuation fund, which is meant to deliver us a no-frills retirement, only works about … Continue reading

4 Nov 2015 (TheAge,SMH) – Positively naive – Why optimistic people are more likely to be duped

[COMMENT: This is a very interesting article that will be of interest to many investors and others, as it explains why some people are more likely to be duped by scammers and fraudsters than others. One key point is to do with the development of the part of the brain that dictates our capacity for … Continue reading

18 Sept 2015 (AFR) – A low-growth, lower-return world: get used to it

(18 September 2015, AFR, p23, by Vanessa Desloires ) ‘Volatility is here to stay, whether the US Federal Reserve lifts interest rates or not, and investors should prepare for lower growth and abandon the set-and-forget axiom. Tracey McNaughton, head of investment strategy at UBS Global Asset Management Australia/NZ, says it’s time to prepare for a new, low-growth world … Continue reading

15 Sept 2015 (AFR) – Seven years on, investors forget harsh lessons from Lehman collapse

(15 September 2015, AFR, p17, by Ruth Liew ) ‘It’s been seven years since the collapse of Lehman Brothers that helped spark the global financial crisis, but experts are now warning that a second GFC may be on the cards as investors remain in debt and forget the lessons of the past. Tuesday marks the … Continue reading

12 Sept 2015 (AFR) – Flawed analysis a trap for hybrid buyers – Westpac’s $1.32 billion lemon

[COMMENT: If the content of this article is true, then retail investors might need to be very diligent regarding the investment offers that they take up – caveat emptor.] (12 September 2015, AFR, p28, by Christopher Joye ) ‘My analysis headlined “Westpac’s hybrid deal a dud” on 22 July annoyed the bank and the many folks … Continue reading

28 Aug 2015 (TheAge) – China tipped to weather this storm – in trouble, but this is not yet a ‘Lehman’ moment for world economy

[COMMENT: Now he opening paragraph below tells it like it is. So, we need to be careful not to be emotionally swayed by the over-dramatised headlines in the press – the headlines that sell the papers and draw us to read the articles.] (28 Aug 2015, The Age, BusinessDay, p28, Ambrose Evans-Pritchard) ‘You need steel … Continue reading

26 Aug 2015 (AFR) – The $1.3m house no one wants for $420,000 – Pilbara property investors suffer as prices plunge 67pc since 2011

[COMMENT: This is a very sobering news story for the property investors who buy a property for the long term gain, and who hope to rent it in the meantime. It appears that some property values can plummet! Did someone say that property prices never fall? Well there are a few bargains like this on … Continue reading

26 Aug 2015 (AFR) – Tips for coping with ‘the uncertainty of extreme volatility’ – If you can’t take the heat get out of the kitchen

[COMMENT: The content of this news story (on cognitive biases) is highly recommended reading. But make sure to read the factual content in the context of the news article, and be careful not to accept this as financial advice.] (26 August 2015, AFR, p22, by Jeremy Chunn ) ‘When markets are struck down violently and … Continue reading

26 Aug 2015 (AFR) – SMSFs told to hold their nerve and buy as markets sway

[COMMENT: Isn’t it so cruel that “financial aadvice” like this news article is being peddled as though it is wise advice? Investors need to realise that when stocks are falling in value, they might continue to fall in value. Just remember the GFC. Don’t forget what happened in March to May 2008 during the first … Continue reading

19 Aug 2015 (TheAge,SMH) – At last – the horrible truth about the stock market (Marcus Padley)

(19 August 2015, The Age, MONEY supplement, p4, Marcus Padley) ‘This is how how the share market really works. To the insiders, it’s like a car yard, writes Marcus Padley.’ ‘I’m thinking of doing some educational seminars for clients. No not the Free Seminars that upsell you to some product or platform that burns your … Continue reading

7 Aug 2015 (AFR) – Small investors lose out in fast moving markets – MUST READ!

[COMMENT: For all the retail investors who wonder what actually happens in the sharemarket behind the scenes, this is a very telling account of the last few days – a must read!] (7 August 2015, AFR, Chanticleer, p40, by Tony Boyd ) ‘The proposition that small investors are the biggest losers in today’s fast-moving equity … Continue reading