WEEKEND READS: Catch up on the most interesting articles I’ve read this week

There are more interesting articles, commentaries and analyst reports on the Web every week than anyone could read in a month.read coffee weekend

Each Saturday morning I like to share some of the ones I’ve read during the week.

So pour yourself a mug of strong brew and get ready for some weekend reading ….and please forward to your friends by clicking a social link buttons on the left.

ALP eyes super tax hit for wealthy

The Australian explains:

Up to 170,000 Australians face higher superannuation taxes under Labor plans to tackle the budget deficit by raising $14 billion over the next decade from wealthier workers and retirees.

The plan will put further pressure on Joe Hockey over the ­fairness of the looming federal budget by targeting the well-off, while the government flags tightening ­eligibility for pensions to make ­retirement incomes policy sustainable.

9 Money lessons to teach your children | What’s better capital cities or regional properties | Why to avoid Hotspots | Off the plan purchases + more

Another great Real Estate Talk show  produced by Kevin Turner.

If you don’t already subscribe to this excellent weekly Internet based radio show do so now by clicking here.

Details of this week’s show:


In today’s show Michael Yardney tells us the 9 important money tips to teach our children and Pete Wargent wades into the debate about capital cities versus the regions and where we are seeing the best growth.

Chris Gray explains why he is not a great believer in hot spots and tells us where he prefers to invest and why.

Ken Raiss explains about how trusts protect landlords and we get another warning about buying off the plan from Rachel Barnes.

Carolyn Boyd looks at why so many people are being lured into living in apartments and points out some issues you should take into consideration if you are considering investing in units.

Plus lot’s more…

$1 million won’t buy you much in retirement

A carefree retirement is a lot more costly than most people think according to a report in Yahoo Finance.

A superannuation expert has calculated that $1 million in superannuation only fetches as much as a government pension.

Jeremy Cooper, a superannuation industry veteran, computes that in this low interest rate environment, a typical $1 million nest egg in the form of a lifetime income, equates to $1297 a fortnight – the same as the government pension.

“The brutal reality is that a fair price for an age pension in today’s interest rate environment is around $1 million ….

For that amount, a couple will get $33,717 of income a year. A comfortable retirement would cost more,”

Mr Cooper’s statement comes after the government’s Intergenerational Report found that by 2055, Australians’ life expectancy will climb to 95.1 years for men and 96.6 for women – reflecting the need for more retirement planning.

So how much do you need to retire? You may want to read my blog: How many properties do you need to retire?

Do you know how the richest people became rich?

Robert Kiyosaki wrote:

In the Agrarian Age, the richest people were royalty and their consorts.rich

In the Industrial Age wealth and power shifted to entrepreneurs.

Entrepreneurs such as Henry Ford, founder of Ford Motor Company and Thomas Edison, founder of General Electric.

In the Information Age the richest people are still entrepreneurs, but today, there is a difference.

The entrepreneurs of today traffic in intellectual property, they are younger, more agile and able to build their empires without raising the capital required by the manufacturing giants of old.

You must be born into royalty, but to be an entrepreneur you need only create an empire in your mind.

ATO releases hit list for targeting high net worth individuals who dodge tax

The Australian Tax Office is stepping up its efforts to recover tax liabilities from companies and individuals that attempts to skip out on their tax bills, releasing an online guide that spells out its approach to ensuring tax compliance among the nation’s wealthiest individuals and private companies according to SmartCompany.

The ATO has also given insight into what it will be looking for from “high-wealth individuals” in an online publication that outlines the kind of behaviour that will attract it attention.

tax The ATO’s checklist includes low transparency of an individual of group’s tax affairs, large one-off or unusual transactions, a history of “aggressive tax planning” and lifestyles “not supported by after-tax income”.

The ATO will also be keeping an eye out for individuals treating private assets as business assets, individuals using business assets for tax-free private use and those who choose “not to comply or regularly [take] controversial interpretations of the law”.

SmartCompany understands around 300,000 Australians are classified as “wealthy” by the ATO, while 4600 individuals with net wealth of $5 million and above are considered HWIs.

What’s affecting Australia’s property market?

There are many aspects of Australia’s economy that directly affect the property market.

The quarterly CommSec State of States report assesses key indicators to establish the performance of the states and territories.

Your Investment Property summarized the findings of this report:

Last quarter, NSW was the overall economic leader alongside the Northern Territory. This time, NSW is leading the way on its own.

“NSW is on top because population has been growing in recent years and now home construction is responding to the shortage of accommodation,” said the report.

Here is how the states and territories are currently shaping up across a range of factors:


Construction work is sitting higher than decade averages in six of the states and territories.

The Northern Territory was up almost 171%, followed by Western Australia (33.4%), Queensland (10.7%) and New South Wales (10%).

While construction levels are largely robust, the gap between the strongest states and the weakest remains large.

Tasmania is now sitting at 4.7% below the decade averages and the ACT are just scraping by at 0.2%.

Economic growth

The Northern Territory is continuing to lead Australia’s economic activity, sitting at just under 45% above its ‘normal’ decade average.

This region also has the fastest annual growth rate in the nation, up 3.2%.

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The next strongest state for economic growth is Western Australia, sitting at 26% above the decade average, followed by the ACT (up 15.2%).

Both Tasmania and South Australia are seeing modest rates of less than 1% above decade averages.

In terms of retail spending, New South Wales has seen the strongest growth (up 6.3%), followed by Victoria (up 4.1%) and Tasmania (up 2.4%).


The latest unemployment rates are above their decade averages across all states and territories.

Northern Territory has retained its position as the nation’s strongest job market with an unemployment rate of 4.3%, followed by ACT at 4.4% and Western Australia on 5.7%.

Tasmania’s unemployment woes appear to be improving with the jobless rate falling to a 39 month low of 6.5%.

While the unemployment rate in Western Australia may remain low, it has increased by 35% over the first quarter – the highest in Australia.


Annual growth has eased in all states apart from the Northern Territory.

Western Australia is looking the strongest with an annual growth rate of 2.12%, however this is trending at 20.3% below decade-average levels. Victoria came in second with a growth of 1.77%, followed by New South Wales at 1.43%.

Tasmania has seen the strongest growth rate in 2.5 years at 0.64%.

Housing finance

Victoria has now taken the top spot in Australia for housing finance with commitments 11.5% above the long-term average.

Next strongest were New South Wales on 10.4% and Western Australia at 5.5%.

Northern Territory remains the weakest market for housing finance with commitments 23% below its decade average.

The next weakest was South Australia down 13.7% and Tasmania at 10.8% below its decade average.

Weekend video: Repairing the Budget using only a sense of wonder and a cigar

Watch this short Clarke and Dawes video and you’re sure to have a little chuckle.

Blogs you may have missed this week:

If you didn’t have a chance to read my daily blog, here’s a list of some of the blogs you missed this week:

Are You Chasing Success or Happiness?

The Bank of Mum and Dad

5 great tips for making the most of lower interest rates

6 reasons why good properties are sold below value

Mirror Mirror on the Wall – 8 Strategies That Will Toggle on Your Success Switch

How to Avoid Common Investor Mistakes – Only investing in your own backyard

Want more of this type of information?


Michael is a director of Metropole Property Strategists who create wealth for their clients through independent, unbiased property advice and advocacy. He's been voted Australia's leading property investment adviser and his opinions are regularly featured in the media. Visit Metropole.com.au

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