Superannuation Reforms – are you 30 June 2017 ready?

Superannuation Reforms – are you 30 June 2017 ready?

Your Superannuation & the Reforms – what it could mean for you

The superannuation reforms announced in the 2016-2017 Federal budget have passed Parliament and will come into effect from 1 July 2017. Previous changes that the Howard government introduced in 2007 which allowed contributions up to $1million were significant. There have been changes since then but these are the biggest changes seen in a decade.

The reforms have a huge impact on the ability to contribute funds to superannuation. The superannuation environment is the most tax friendly environment and these changes will now limit the amounts you can contribute. It is time to consider the impact these changes may have on you and consider any action you may need to take before 30 June 2017. It is imperative right now to make sure you are making full use of what you can within the current rules. Our team are ready to discuss your situation & help you make informed decisions now and to plan for your future.

With the reform that will reduce the tax-free limit in pension phase to $1.6 million, it is important to maximise the exempt current income amount. This must be looked at on an individual or SMSF member basis to work out the balance of pension and/or accumulation amounts. There is no ‘one size fits all’ approach.

In moving from the current rules to the new rules there are various choices and options to be looked at regarding CGT cost bases and the outcomes that could have a significant impact for the future. Any changes to your current situation need to be finalised before 30 June 2017.

If you are under 65 and making non-concessional contributions to superannuation, the reforms reduce the cap and change the ‘bring forward’ rule which will limit the amount you can contribute in any one year. Taking advantage of the bring forward rule now will utilise the current caps and allow you to maximise these contributions before the changes come into effect.

There may also be some steps to consider for succession planning in self-managed super funds as the current estate instructions in place may not be relevant to you & your partner after 30 June 2017.

Read the full article for further details or you can contact us to have a chat to one of our team

You can’t just sit back and wait – 30 June 2017 superannuation reforms could have a lasting impact on your future. Some plans will need to be made and finalised in the 2017 financial year and some will be ongoing. Make the most of the next 3 months.

How can we help?

Our accounting  specialists are ready to assess your situation and provide the various strategies to our wealth advisors who will deliver the advice and implementation plan to you so are 30 June 2017 ready.

Contact us now 
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Economic Snapshot – Annual 2016 & Beyond

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This economic snapshot  covers 2016 with some perspective on how markets performed and why, with an outlook for the year ahead.

In summary

2016 was a dramatic year for the world’s financial markets. The year started with collapsing oil prices, fears of recession and deflation, equity markets falling sharply and investors favouring bonds and what might be termed “expensive defensives”.

By the end of the year, we had rising oil prices, renewed optimism about US growth and inflation, cyclical equities rallying, bonds selling off and defensives falling out of favour. In between we had on then off again OPEC deals, we had Brexit and we had the USA Trump victory which threw most fund managers. In summary despite all the noise and surprise political outcomes, we had a good year for diversified portfolios with positive returns recorded by a number of asset classes in 2016. This end result rewarded patient investors and masked the considerable within-year volatility.

2017 looks like being another year of volatility (the new normal) although somewhat surprisingly, forward looking expectations for asset classes have more upside room than at the beginning of 2016. This is an encouraging scenario built on economic rationale not geo political activities and market sentiment which, of course has a history of overturning expected outcomes in the short term. Snapshot comments cautiously on the outlook in the second half of this update given the interest of many readers for asset class outlooks.

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There’s no escaping numbers, whether you like playing the numbers game or not, so it’s best to either embrace them, or find someone who can crunch the numbers for you.

We’re all surrounded by numbers

Now I may sound like a boring old school accountant when I ask “Have you ever really challenged yourself and pondered the value of ‘numbers’? I was recently challenged in this way by my 12-year old daughter when, for her first High School Mathematics assignment, she interviewed me about how numbers are used in my work and around the home.

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Economic Snapshot – September-October 2016

Economic Snapshot – September-October 2016

In summary

September was a frustrating month for investors in global financial markets. The first half of the month saw both bonds and equities retreat on concerns the Federal Reserve would lift interest rates at its meeting on the 20th – 21st. As things turned out, the Reserve left the cash rate unchanged and revised down its forward profile of interest rates. The markets were reassured by this, leading bonds and equities to recover ground lost earlier in the month. This see -saw effect is now a recurring theme as markets dance to the tune of the interest rate outlook.

Here in Australia the Reserve Bank has maintained the cash rate at 1.5%, noting the economy is growing at a moderate pace but inflation is low and likely to remain so for some time. Once again, the Reserve Bank noted that an appreciating A$ could complicate the adjustments the economy needs to make.
The Bank of Japan announced a new dimension to its QE program aimed at generating a positive yield curve. Despite the commentary it appears markets remain sceptical about this move.
Meanwhile in Europe the European Central Bank [ECB] left its monetary policy stance unchanged at its meeting in early September. Financial markets interpreted the accompanying statement as a signal the ECB would start to wind back its QE programme. This contributed to nervousness and volatility, as did speculation about the solvency of Deutsche Bank later in the month.

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Like all parents, you want your children to have the best possible start in life by helping them grow their own financial nest egg. And owning property is a great way to do it. So how can you help your children get a foothold in the property market?

Ideally, you’d be able to give them enough money to cover the 5% cash deposit and associated stamp duty and legal costs. But what happens if you don’t have the money? Can you still help your children get a foothold?

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