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Property trusts require scrutiny

15 October 2013 | Broker reports editor

ScrutinyThe $2.7 billion takeover offer for Commonwealth Property Office Fund by Dexus Property Group and its Canadian joint-venture partner may go higher. But analysts think the wiggle room is limited.

Westpac after Lloyds acquisition

14 October 2013 | Broker reports editor

LloydsBrokers are divided about whether Westpac is a good investment or not after the Lloyds acquisition. The implication seems to be, as brokers would say, to "buy on weakness". When analysts are divided, the pricing is probably close to correct.

Property prices under threat from baby boomers

14 October 2013 | Staff reporter

cash-inThe recent rise in the stock market and the property market is encouraging more baby boomers to retire. But this is posing a threat to those very same markets, suggesting gains might be temporary.

Markets brace for the best

14 October 2013 | PSI

brace Political gridlock in America is almost certainly going to have some bad consequences in the global capital markets. In bad times, the biggest bargains appear, so it may be time for SMSF investors to be on the lookout.

Property recovery will not be a repeat

14 October 2013 | Staff reporter

apartmentsThe apparent recovery in the property market will be in multi-unit dwellings rather than stand alone residences, which has implications for SMSF investors looking to invest in the sector. It also affects the prospects for investing in the shares of building products companies, who will struggle to increase profitability.

Investor sentiment is the real financial crisis

14 October 2013 | PSI

investorThe prospect of an American debt default is troubling. But the real danger is that investor confidence will take a battering, which will then become self fulfilling. According to one economist, the world still has too much debt.

Lobbying fierce to keep conflicts of interest

11 October 2013 | Reynard

conflictThe financial advice industry and the banks are lobbying hard to keep their conflicts of interest, in what is an extraordinarily unseemly demonstration of venality at the expense of clients' interests. The Abbott government seems intent on bowing to the pressure.

How Australia's rent seekers affect super

11 October 2013 | PSI

rentA speech by a well known economist about partisan politics, lobbying and the uneven effect on industry sectors is an important element in the thinking of investors. It suggests that SMSF owners are likely to be left alone by government, but they need to follow what decisions governments are making.

Gold sector comes under scrutiny

10 October 2013 | Broker reports editor

Gold ScrutinyThe price of the yellow precious metal has come off, and brokers are turning a critical eye on production levels and costs. Barring a sudden rise in the gold price because of the US debt crisis, investors need to scrutinise cash flow and balance sheets carefully.

Big shake up in super fund governance

10 October 2013 | Staff reporter

Governance shake upThe Coalition's proposed changes to governance of super funds imply yet another argument for starting your own SMSF in the right circumstances. At least with your own fund you can manage the interests in an easily understood way. With retail funds and industry funds, the transparency is low.

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