Recently, we have been closely watching market valuations that have been indicating overpriced equity markets and it has us concerned. I liken the current state of the markets to that of the movie, The Big Short, which was based on the GFC (Global Financial Crisis) (If you haven’t seen the movie and would like to know what’s happening in our current markets I urge ask you to watch it this weekend.)
Although we still have exposure to some growth assets including certain shares in both Australia and various regions, Having watched people’s wealth being destroyed during the GFC, has made us overly conservative has made us highly conservative for two reasons:
There are moments in life where unnecessary risk is taken despite the warning signs. For example, swimming outside the flags at the beach when the surf looks exciting. The flags are there for a reason, they warn you about certain dangers like turbulent currents that could suck you out to sea. For the stock market, the warning flags are overvaluation and slowing growth and investors should take heed when they are waving.
The overvaluation flag has been waving in the wind for some time. For example, the Shiller Cyclically Adjusted Price Earnings index (S&P500 price-dividend by its trailing 10-year average EPS) has been flashing extreme valuation levels for the US stock market. Based on current US valuations, if you invested in the S&P 500 you could expect a ten-year return of -3.2%. The only time in history that the US market had higher valuations than today was just prior to the Tech Wreck.
With little doubt, Superannuation (AKA Super) is likely going to be a persons longest-term investment and, therefore, deserves to be considered with a greater depth than perhaps their other financial investments. There is no better time than now to engage in a conversation with a Kofkin Bond and Co financial adviser to ensure your Super is in order.
In the course of an average life, they may have many long and short-term savings and investment objectives. Saving for a holiday or a used car in your younger days may take a year or two, Whereas saving for a home deposit may take a little longer, and even then it may take thirty years, or more, to pay it off.
Growing up in Australia, we didn’t watch a lot of baseball; it was mostly cricket and rugby. But those sports share many commonalities with baseball.
In cricket, there isn’t an umpire calling balls and strikes. Instead the batsman protects the wicket—two “bails,” or small pieces of wood balanced between three posts (known as stumps) behind the batsman. If the ball hits the batsman and would have otherwise hit the wicket (I’ll spare you excruciating caveats to this rule), or hits the wicket directly, or if a hit ball is caught, he’s out. But aside from protecting a much narrower “strike zone,” the batsman is under no obligation to swing. The batsman can wait patiently for a ball to hit. (But “hitting it for six” is every bit as exciting, I assure you, as a home run).
The purchase of property by an SMSF has long been seen as an attractive option for investors, however, the rules regarding any limitations are often misunderstood.
We have put together this article as an attempt to clarify each of the ways property can be held by an SMSF.
SMSF acquires property outright
The simplest form of ownership by an SMSF is to own the property outright; The SMSF having purchased the property with cash.
Less is more. More is less. Reaching your financial potential is all about balance, perspective, knowledge, values, and how you define what is most important to your happiness. For some, the idea of ‘success’ holds a level of allure and enticement that will motivate their actions to make more money and surround themselves with the trappings of wealth. For others, the idea of financial success means ‘less’; less debt, less stress, fewer possessions, fewer complications. Whether you consider yourself a ‘more’ or ‘less’ person, it’s all perspective and the level of energy you are willing to invest, in order for your values and financial dreams to be met. (If only it were that simple to remove outside factors and influences.)
Unfortunately, we can often fall victim to enticements, temptations and sometimes guilt or judgment from family, friends and, colleagues. There is then the constant array of online marketing that seeks to aid our deviation from our financial goals.
“As the beginning of the financial year fast approaches, there’s no better time to remind ourselves that we have the power to do something meaningful and, make something special happen in our lives and our world”, says Tony Kofkin, Managing Partner of Kofkin Bond & Co.
With the launch of Realise your Financial Potential, Kofkin Bond & Co is inspiring Australians to take a first step in pursuit of their chosen passion or purpose, and take small steps into a lifetime of happy memories.
“Realise your Financial Potential’ is a call to action, at a time when people truly believe in themselves to fuel change, and, whether big or small, an action that has the ability to make their world a better place. That movement is what we aim to unveil this financial year.
“Every day at Kofkin Bond & Co. we work to make a difference in the community. Whether it’s working with businesses to drive financial certainty to the bottom line, supporting Australians lessen their tax implications as a result of relocating or working side by side with those who have served, and continue to serve our nation, on a new wealth initiative to secure their financial future,” says Kofkin.
Homeowners, who sell while they’re living overseas, could lose the capital gains tax exemption on a home which used to be their main residence in reforms targeted at foreign investors to safeguard the opportunity for Australian buyers to purchase.
The reforms announced as part of the 2017-18 Federal Budget in May. are a part of a host of changes to policy investment rules aimed at improving housing affordability,
Under current laws, Australian residents get a full exemption from capital gains tax on the sale of a home, that was their main residence, throughout the ownership period. Capital gains tax is a tax on the profits earned on an asset in the time that a person buys, then disposes of it. It’s not a separate tax but rather the capital gain is included in a person’s taxable income in the year when the sale was made, then calculated as part of income tax.
Australian residents also receive a partial exemption if the home was their main residence for only part of the ownership period. And they benefit from an “absence rule,” which allows them to treat a dwelling as their main residence for capital gains tax purposes for an unlimited period of time, as long as they keep it empty and don’t rent it out.
The end of the financial year is rapidly approaching and, along with it, the opportunity to claim a tax deduction on additional superannuation contributions.
Why contribute more to super?
Superannuation does impose restrictions on access to your money. It is, after all, intended to provide for your retirement. So why would you lock up more of your money? Because superannuation remains one of the most tax-favoured environments within which to build wealth. That can make it an ideal place to invest your long-term savings.
We often hear Australian expats taking the age-old ‘set and forget’ approach when it comes to their superannuation. Here we wanted to explore some of the risks you may be exposed to in an Australian expats superannuation fund.
Generally, the superannuation can’t be touched for years. With this in mind, we are often asked why should expats bother looking into it before they jet off or even while they are abroad? A recent article out of the Australian Financial Review (AFR) has placed the spotlight on how our superannuation is invested and potentially exposing expats to investment risk that they may not have been aware of.
It points out the lack of transparency that members face when it comes to knowing where their super is invested and what the actual level of risk members take on by being in specific investment option (i.e. Balanced, Growth and High Growth).