(4 min read time)

I have attached Dr Shane Oliver’s most recent update, if, like me, you like to nerd out a little on the economic facts!

The key points……..

Read more: Oliver’s Insights - The Australian economy hits another rough patch

(1 min read time)

I saw this on the weekend. Elders Rural Bank is the first to market with an FMD offset.

What this means is, if you have say a debt of $2m and then $400,000 in FMDs, simplistically you will only pay interest on $1.6m debt.

Read more: Newsflash - Farm Management Deposits to offset your lending

(1 min read time)

Welcome to 2017. What exciting times we are in to say the least! Mr Trump is sworn in and, as expected, is hitting the headlines.

I personally am really optimistic about the future. Why I and many others believe we are in the best time in history to be alive, will be the basis of my next blog. Stay tuned for that one!

Read more: 2017 Investment Returns - An Expert's Opinion

(1 min read time)

We seldom think about our future or our future self. We really don't have a concept of what we will be like in 15-20 years.

I am planning to be able to retire between the ages of 55-60 (that doesn't mean I will choose to retire, but I just want to financially able to). That's 15-20 years away!

I don't know 55 year old Ben, but thinking about it, I really hope he still is a good guy. I also hope he is a really fit and healthy 55 year old and being a financial planner, I hope he is very financially secure.

Read more: Will your future self thank you?

(1 min read time)

I read recently that 42% of Australian's don't know how much they will need to retire on.

I don't think that is a shock in itself as I think that they miss a key issue. When you add in the number of people that think they know, but are wrong, the percentage would be truly shocking!

Read more: Retirement Shock

(1 min read time)

Do you lay awake at night thinking about spending more time with the family, having that holiday, retirement, your Wills, your debts, tax, insurance, superannuation and wondering how you are going to be able to afford to retire when the time comes or maybe even wishing you had everything 'under control'?

I regularly meet business owners that clearly know there are key areas in their financial situation that desperately need attention. They also know that to achieve the level of success they want, they need to fix them.

Knowing you need to fix something and actually doing it are two very different things. This is the "knowing-doing gap".

Read more: The Knowing-Doing Gap

(30s read time)

House

Attached is the Herron Todd White monthly report for rural/commercial and residential property sales. I always find getting a licenced valuers point of view on what's happening in the property market invaluable:-

Herron Todd White - Month in Review September 2015 (3.96MB .pdf file)

Read more: What's happening to the value of your property?

(1 min read time)

We're going to get a little bit heavier this month but bear with me, it will be worth it!!

We all know that as the Australian dollar goes up, overseas travel and imported goods get cheaper and correspondingly as our Aussie dollar goes down they get more expensive.

Over the last 12 months we have seen a significant reduction in the Aussie dollar (AUD) from almost $1.10 USD to around $0.75 USD. We all agree, it's bad for overseas travel and buying that new television, fridge, car or any other imported goods.

Read more: Changes in the AUD - Friend or Foe!

(1 min read time)

"Investing is simple, it just isn't easy." - Warren Buffett

I'd like to tell you a quick story. Back in 1999 there was a 23 year old fellow, let's call him John, who was fresh out of university and had diligently saved $4,000, his life savings at the time.

John was going to invest into a blue chip share based investment (simple but not sexy) but his 23 year old eyes were caught by this amazing new hot and cutting edge 'Tech Fund' which the previous year had returned a whopping 95%. Wow, wow, wow! Everyone was investing in it and everyone was excited.

Read more: Investing is simple, it just isn’t easy

(<2 min read time)

A client recently said "we are not risk takers Ben..... that is, unless we know exactly what we are doing, then we are aggressive!".

I thought that after 17 years in the profession, this was a great explanation of our relationship with risk. Understanding the risk leads to being comfortable with it..

Read more: Risk really does mean different things to different people

(<2 min read time)

One of my dirty secrets is ... wait for it... I love to read business and finance books. There, I said it. Phew... now that's over, I will put one caveat. I don't just read any book, just those written by people who are much, much smarter than I am.

Read more: Money, Master the Game

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