Budget 2019/20 – Same Old, Shame Old

Treasurer Josh Frydenberg stood up in Parliament yesterday evening to deliver his maiden Budget speech as Treasurer, having inherited the job some seven months ago amidst the Liberal party in-fighting and change of leadership.

There’s a lot riding on this Budget, and it shows. In essence this Budget has one job, and one job only; to put the Coalition government in a position where it has the best chance of retaining government at the yet-to-be-called general election.

Political pundits now put the most likely date of the next election at 11 May, a mere five or so weeks away. We’ll know soon enough, as it’s expected that Prime Minister Morrison will take that drive up to Yarralumla any day now.

But back to the Budget. The Good, the Not-so-Good and the Questionable. What exactly does it contain (other than the phrase “without increasing taxes”, uttered by Treasurer Frydenberg no less than nine times during his speech)?

More importantly, how will it affect you, your nearest and dearest and your prospects for a brighter future? Read on to find out…

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2018 Investment Year in Review

Reading Time: 10 minutes

Key Take-outs

  • The comfy armchair ride global share investors experience during 2017 turned into a white-knuckled roller-coaster in 2018.
  • Key global share markets came under significant selling pressure from September on, with the US market falling sharply as the year ended.
  • After starting to fall in late 2017, residential property price falls accelerated in Sydney and Melbourne during 2018, while Hobart rose strongly.
  • Cryptocurrency, the investment mania of 2017, crashed in spectacular fashion, with Bitcoin falling 80% during 2018 .
  • 2018 proved there is no such thing as riskless returns, and that the occasional burst of volatility is the price of admission that all investors have to pay to receive returns better than Cash (i.e. 0% p.a. after inflation and before tax).
  • Low-cost diversification is still the single best way to get your fair share of market returns without flaming out on a single bet (ahem, #CryptoLife).

In our 2018 Financial Year in Review (for the year to 30 June 2018) we spoke about the unusual calm that had dominated markets during 2017, noting that “… 2017 produced a Goldilocks-like investment environment of steadily rising asset valuations.”

Unfortunately, as anyone who is familiar with the fairy tale knows, Goldilocks made herself at home in a stranger’s house, assuming it was a riskless act, only to be surprised by three angry bears unimpressed by her sense of self-entitlement.

As with Goldilocks, many share investors were lulled into a false sense of security during 2018, only to be mauled by a bear of a market.

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6 investing horror stories in time for Halloween (and some great scary movies)

Do you love a good scary yarn? Are you a horror flick aficionado? Does the thought of the zombie apocalypse fill you with terror?

Bah! We’ve got some real tales from the finance crypt that will give even the bravest investor cold sweats and fits of analysis paralysis! Read on if you dare…

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How does Clover calculate my returns?

It’s a lovely spring day and because you’re in a good mood you login to your Clover dashboard to see your money at work. After giving a whoop of joy you decide to double-check these returns…and something seems off. Why are your calculations different from what you’re being shown? What’s going on?

The discrepancy has to do with how we calculate returns. We’ve decided to re-post an excellent explanation on how we calculate your fees. WARNING – some maths are involved here but we promise to keep it simple.

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What are the best ways to use your tax refund?

Ah yes, tax time. The time of year when we’re filing all of our hard-earned income to our friends at the ATO. If you’ve already filed and have received (or a due to receive) a refund then you’ve undoubtedly got some nifty ideas on where to spend your cash.

Here at Clover, we’ve utilised some incredibly complex mathematical modelling to create our Happiness vs. Time formula, and applied it to some real-life examples. Prepare to be astounded! Continue reading “What are the best ways to use your tax refund?”