Brexit – What Does It Mean For Australian Investors?

Brexit – What Does It Mean For Australian Investors?

Given the amount of press coverage over the last weeks and months, most of you would be aware that the UK was to hold a referendum (Brexit) to decide whether or not they would remain as part of the European Union.  It was always going to be a closely run race with almost all pundits predicting a victory for the ‘’Remain’ voters.

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Economic Snapshot –   May – June 2016

Economic Snapshot – May – June 2016

In May we experienced an important realignment of interest rate expectations – both here in Australia and in the USA. Both countries are resisting a change of rates for differing reasons. There has been softer than expected inflation data in Australia leading to a holding strategy on rates whereas the USA had stronger than expected spending data – but is communicating concern about Britain leaving the European Union which in turn has led to a similar hold strategy. All things being equal and assuming Britain remain in Europe the USA is more likely to increase rates. We live in interesting times?

In Australia, the market priced another cut in the cash rate, while in the USA the market brought its short-term expectations for the cash rate more into line with the Federal Reserve’s guidance. These changes in the market’s expectations about interest rates contributed to a modest but renewed depreciation of the $A – which continues to show resilience upside strength beyond expectations.

Australia

 Economic data for Australia released in May prompted further expectations of lower domestic interest rates. For example, the latest wage price index figures showed hourly rates of pay grew by a mere 0.4% in the March quarter and by 2.1% over the past 12 months. This was the lowest reading in the last 20 years. Economists have noted that this pace of wage inflation is lower than history suggests it should be given where the unemployment rate is at the moment.

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Economic Snapshot for March – April 2016

Economic Snapshot for March – April 2016

Portfolios in March saw further improvement in global investor sentiment as fears of a recession faded due to better news on key economic data and some stability returning to the oil market. Equities recorded a positive return for the month, with emerging equity markets outperforming particularly well after their recent difficult months. The normal monthly graph looks significantly different to the 3 month equivalent for the first quarter of the year and as such we have included the latter for a better perspective. US equities for example have now achieved a moderate return of 1.18% for the quarter but this is due to a strong rebound of over 6% in March. This is a poignant reminder that when we take into account a minimum 5 year time horizon the graphs are merely snapshots of a point in time.
In the US, there were further signs of labour market strength and some welcome improvement in the pace of manufacturing activity. Core inflation also continued to edge higher. However, the Federal Reserve again reiterated its preference to move cautiously with further interest rate increases. This inevitably undermined the US$ and resulted in speculative trading and volatility.

There were also encouraging signs of improving economic conditions in China, with the manufacturing index rising to its best level since June 2014. This reflects the impact of further monetary and fiscal stimulus from the Chinese authorities in recent months.

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PrimeAdvisory 2016 Federal Budget Review

PrimeAdvisory 2016 Federal Budget Review

The Federal Treasurer Scott Morrison has handed down the Budget for the 2016/17 year.

This budget includes many initiatives to stimulate the economy and establish a 10 year economic plan that will transition Australia from a mining led economy to a stronger, more diversified economy encouraging innovation and job growth. Read More

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Why Budget Night might be a MayDay call for transition to retirement pensions

Why Budget Night might be a MayDay call for transition to retirement pensions

55 and over – Act NOW to protect your Super

Everyone loves a good rumour and with budget night less than a month away – due to be delivered on 3rd May – there are many going around. With Australia’s population aging and the baby boomers now at retirement age, it is suspected that the government may look to superannuation, contributions tax, and transition- to-retirement schemes (TTRs). Moreover, it is rumoured that TTRs may be attacked in the May budget. This means if you were 55 or over on 1 July 2015 you may need to act now.

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