13 commonsense tips to help manage your finances

13 commonsense tips to help manage your finances   Key points Getting your personal finances right can be a challenge. Here are 13 tips that may be of use: shop around when it comes to financial services; don’t take on too much debt; allow that interest rates can go up as well as down; allow for rainy days; credit cards are great but they deserve respect; use your mortgage (if you can) for all longer …

Weekly Market Update 09 November 2018

Weekly Market Update 09 November 2018 Investment markets and key developments over the past week Share markets mostly rose over the last week, helped in particular by a favourable reaction to the US midterm elections. Chinese shares remained under pressure though. Bond yields continued to rise reflecting the “risk on” tone from investors and as the Fed showed no signs of pausing its rate hikes. Commodity prices were mixed though with oil falling further and metal …

Three reasons why we’re not in a bear market

Three reasons why we’re not in a bear market October was certainly a volatile month for investors. Share markets globally fell between 6% and 7% in total return terms. Australia had the worst monthly outcome since August 2015. But if you measure the falls from highs this year to recent lows the retreat has been even bigger. The average decline for global shares has been around 10%. From its peak in late August, the S&PASX200 …

Rising US interest rates, trade wars, the US midterm election results

Rising US interest rates, trade wars, the US midterm election results – should investors be worried? Key points It’s still too early to be sure that last month’s pullback in shares is over but we remain of the view that it was not the start of a deep bear market and that the trend in shares remains up   Worries around US interest rates, trade wars, European politics etc are unlikely to be terminal.   …

Weekly Market Update 02 November 2018

Weekly Market Update 02 November 2018 Investment markets and key developments over the past week Share markets bounced back over the past week helped by good US earnings results and a lessening of trade war fears following comments from President Trump after a phone call with President Xi Jinping. Reflecting the risk on tone bond yields generally rose, but while the iron ore price rose oil and metal prices fell. The risk on tone also …

Why geopolitical concerns are somewhat overblown

Why geopolitical concerns are somewhat overblown The major worries for investors this year have been rate rises in the US, and geopolitics, particularly the US-China trade conflict and Italy. If we take another look at both those issues, however, some of the concerns appear somewhat overblown. I have previously said the US-China trade dispute would probably get worse before it gets better and that is playing out. It is clear that both sides have dug …

Weekly Market Update 26 October 2018

Weekly Market Update 26 October 2018 Investment markets and key developments over the past week Most major share markets fell over the past week as worries about the global outlook continue. Chinese shares rose though thanks to stimulus measures. Bond yields fell on safe haven demand and while iron ore prices rose, oil and metals fell. The $US rose and this weighed on the $A. The share market correction continues with increasing concerns about global growth. From …

The pullback in shares – 7 things investors need to keep in mind

The pullback in shares – 7 things investors need to keep in mind Key points   The current pullback in shares has been triggered by a range of things – but most notably worries about rising US interest rates and the US/China conflict.    Shares may still have more downside, but we are of the view that it’s just another correction.   Key things for investors to bear in mind are that: corrections are normal; in …

Market correction or market downturn?

Market correction or market downturn? It’s understandable that the recent sharp sell-off on financial markets has left investors feeling particularly nervous. The main concern has been the US Federal Reserve’s shift in monetary policy from low rates and printing money to rising rates and the withdrawal of that printing policy. But there’s also a lengthy worry list of issues that we hear continuously: the US trade conflict with China, issues around the leadership of President …

Are shares expensive?

Are shares expensive? Key points Starting point valuations for shares matter a lot in terms of medium-term return potential and vulnerability to share market falls. Basically, the cheaper the better.   Developed market shares are not dirt cheap (and haven’t been for several years) but on most measures they are not at overvalued extremes. US shares are most at risk, but other markets are reasonable. Introduction Some commentators claim shares are way overvalued and so …