Hot Topics

Diversifying and cutting costs with ETFs

November 24, 2015 | Robin Bowerman, Vanguard Investments Australia

It has been called adviser's alpha. This is the value that quality financial advisers can add by advising their clients on the fundamentals of sound wealth management.

Such fundamentals include setting an appropriate asset allocation and diversification for a portfolio, minimising investment management costs, maximising a portfolio's tax efficiency and adopting a long-term, disciplined approach to investing.

What goes up might come down

November 24, 2015 | Robin Bowerman, Vanguard Investments Australia

'Compound interest is the eighth wonder of the world. He who understands it, earns it ... he who doesn't ... pays it.' - Albert Einstein

Time can be both friend and foe for investors.

It is your friend when there is time for the arithmetic of compound interest to work in your favor - or the ability to tune out a major market shock because the time that you plan to retire still can be measured in decades rather than months.

The purpose of super from another angle

November 10, 2015 | Robin Bowerman, Vanguard Investments Australia

Just as the Federal Government accepts a recommendation from the Financial System Inquiry that the objectives of super be enshrined in law, the Superannuation Complaints Tribunal has discussed this issue specifically from the perspective of super death benefits. It makes interesting reading.

The headline for a lead commentary in the tribunal's recently-released 2014-15 report clearly makes its point: Death benefit trap: Superannuation is not an asset of the estate.

Counting the cost of 'grey' divorce

November 10, 2015 | Robin Bowerman, Vanguard Investments Australia

One of the saddest personal finance stories of the year is a recent piece in The New York Times about the growth of what the author calls "silver or grey divorces".

These divorces involve couples who have been married or in a de facto relationship for 30 years or so who make a decision to separate when close to their retirement or in early retirement.

Intergenerational challenges for retirement saving

October 28, 2015 | Robin Bowerman, Vanguard Investments Australia

A potential trap when saving for retirement is to automatically assume that our retirement savings will have to cover just ourselves: either as a couple or as a single retiree. Yet as many more people nearing retirement or already in retirement are finding out, life and family circumstances can be far more complicated than that.

Greater longevity with improvements in medical science and the wave of retiring baby boomers are among the fundamental causes for the apparent growth of what has been called the "dual-retirement" or "common-retirement" phenomena. This is said to occur when two generations of the same family are in retirement at the same time.

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