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Guaranteed returns or guaranteed losses?

Guaranteed returns or guaranteed losses?

It seems trite to be talking about investment returns in the context of the “feesmustfall” campaign however, there are people who still need to invest and grow their money and in some ways life goes on. One of the more frequent conversations we are currently having is around the issue of market volatility – which to some investors is apparently a new thing. It is in this context (and on the back of 7-8 years of really good returns)...

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Risk free returns?

Risk free returns?

I recently saw an advert for RSA Retail Bonds that was advertising “risk-free” returns. This kind of thing really gets up my nose and in my opinion it smacks of false advertising…RSA Retail Bonds are not the only culprits – just about all of the banks do it too.  “No fees or commissions” or “Risk-free”. Let’s get this straight – there is no such thing as a risk-free investment. The reason they are advertised as...

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(10) Dumb ways to die (financially)

A year or so ago my kids introduced me to a very cute you tube clip, “Dumb Ways to Die” which was a public service campaign to promote rail safety in Melbourne, Australia. It quickly went viral – you can watch the clip here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IJNR2EpS0jw For some reason I found myself humming the tune while I was on my way to work recently and while I was driving my focus turned to dumb things people do,...

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TFSA’s – a better way?

TFSA’s – a better way?

There seems to be quite a bit of activity around the new TFSA accounts and yet it seems to be by all the “wrong” people. By this I mean that the people who seem to be getting excited are not the actual intended beneficiaries…we seem to be forgetting that the TFSA accounts are intended to encourage “non-savers” to save. I’ve thought about it quite a bit and perhaps there is scope for more creativity on...

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Not even with a very long barge-pole

Not even with a very long barge-pole

I was recently asked by the editor of Finweek what I thought of Sanlam’s “new” RA. Here is my response: “On a level, Sanlam could be applauded for trying to encourage saving for retirement in SA. However, it is my belief that anyone that can offer me a “bonus” or “reward” at some stage in the future (over and above my normal investment return) is either exposing me to more risk than I should be or else is...

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Start now!

Start now!

I had an interesting meeting with a young client recently who was at great pains to tell me that he had managed to get off the company pension fund because they were taking too much money off his salary each month and the fund was far too boring for someone his age. He felt that he could do better with the money and his planned strategy was to go as high risk as he could for the next 5 years. Perhaps he would make a lot of money and perhaps...

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