Taking An Interest In Recessionary Economics

The end of financial year meeting of the Basil and Sybil Cheeseparer Superannuation Fund was going well until the Trustees (a) found that their investment strategy was out of sync with reality and (b) failed to find a fixed interest investment that would return more than 2.50% over five years. “We should stick it under the mattress,” said Sybil. “Your side or mine?” quipped Basil. As you should know, even if economics is not your…

Continue reading

The Eighties and the Sail of the Century

If one symbol conjures up an image of Australia as world-beaters, it is our one-off snatching of the Americas Cup yacht race trophy in the Eighties. Those of you old enough to remember will see in the cloud archive of your distant memory (and maybe want to press delete), former PM Bob Hawke wearing a garish black and white sports coat and declaring: “Any employer who sacks a worker for not coming in today is…

Continue reading

Don’t touch my dividends, Dude

There have been few occasions when dividends made it on to the front pages or lead item TV news. The first time was when Treasurer Paul Keating introduced the dividend imputation scheme in 1987, largely as a way of eliminating the double-taxing of company dividends. From that day, Australian investors were given franking credits on the dividends they received on their shares. This had the welcome effect of boosting the investment return for the investor…

Continue reading

ATM fees abolition a smoke screen?

If you were feeling all warm and fuzzy about the Big Four banks deciding to drop the hated ‘foreign’ ATM fees, sorry, the feeling won’t last. For a start, the Commonwealth Bank’s decision to go first didn’t last long. The CBA announced the fee abolition early on Sunday (aiming for a slow news day lead). But within hours, Westpac, the ANZ and National Bank of Australia had all suddenly (on a Sunday) released statements that…

Continue reading