Finance News

Everything you need to know about COVID grants

Posted on Wednesday, August 4, 2021
Let’s be honest, the Olympics could not have come at a better time. With half the nation in lockdown and kids being home-schooled it really has provided great inspiration to many. Unfortunately though, no matter how much we might try to escape reality, the pandemic continues to rage. Last week the government announced a variety of pandemic packages to support businesses in lockdown, and you’d be forgiven for missing the details. Below we have all the links you need to check to see if you are eligible for financial support this time around.  Generally speaking, to be eligible your business needs to show a fall in turnover for a specified period in 2021, compared to an earlier corresponding period. It’s also important to note that some of the grants are time critical. To see if your business is eligible for support and what periods you need to compare, check the government website for your state or territory: New South Wales Victoria Queensland W ... Read the rest of entry »

JobKeeper is gone, but the money's not, just don't call it JobKeeper!

Posted on Thursday, July 29, 2021
With half the nation in lock-down (yes, Victoria's out, but for how long?), in my opinion this is the toughest time many small businesses have ever faced. Despite the property and share markets soaring, the recession has now become real for many people. The government has declared that JobKeeper is not coming back, at least, not with that name. However, the federal government has announced that income support for people in lockdown will be equal to the JobKeeper amount, but will be paid directly to workers, rather than via employers.   So basically JobKeeper.   There is also further assistance available via various state government grants in Victoria and New South Wales for businesses that have been impacted by lockdowns, but for inexplicable reasons the Victorian government application process hasn’t even opened yet, even though lockdown is now over. Seems to not make a great deal of sense.   One of the biggest factors again is the cost of rent for premises t ... Read the rest of entry »

The toll of the FASEA exam on advisers and brokers

Posted on Wednesday, July 21, 2021
Last week I finally sat the FASEA exam, which became compulsory for all financial advisers and stockbrokers in Australia, as a recommendation of the 2017 Financial Services Royal Commission.   Literally every adviser and broker in the industry needs to sit and pass this exam by the end of this year. It has a 70% pass requirement and if you pass you get little feedback, if you fail you get told your areas of weakness.   While I acknowledge and support the view that the financial services industry needs to shape up and truly become a profession, the timing of this deadline has caused all sorts of pain for advisers and brokers.   At a time when the world is already in the greatest turmoil of a generation, the enormous study workload attached to this exam has taken advisers and brokers away from their families, friends, businesses and clients.   This is in addition to the increased mental stress and anxiety that many advisers have faced – and not dealt with – due to the pre ... Read the rest of entry »

My 2021-22 outlook for shares, property and the dollar

Posted on Wednesday, July 7, 2021
The last two financial years will long be up there with the worst, as far as uncertainty is concerned. But despite all the uncertainty many investors, particularly those in superannuation, will see returns in excess of 15%. This is obviously a great result, considering the global pandemic and associated recession. So what’s the outlook for financial year 2021-2022? The Reserve Bank announced yesterday that official interest rates will remain on hold until at least 2024. However, it did make changes to some of its tools, including a slight reduction in some of its stimulus measures. What this means for you, is that the cash rate and your variable interest rate will remain low, but fixed rates are on the rise as the cost of borrowing for the banks starts to increase. Cash and bank deposit returns are likely to remain poor, as the RBA is expected to keep the cash rate at 0.1% for the foreseeable future. Strong economic and earnings growth, along with low interest rates will continue to he ... Read the rest of entry »

Will it be a happy new financial year? I'm not optimistic.

Posted on Wednesday, June 30, 2021
In a few hours’ time we will be saying happy (financial) new year! But is it? I suspect for many individuals and businesses, there won’t be many celebratory fireworks.   Of course, the major concern that we all still have is the various variants of the COVID virus doing the rounds, and our relatively low vaccination rate nationwide.   The government’s surprising announcement that under-40s will be given access to the Astra-Zeneca vaccine flagged an interesting turn in the rollout, which flags a desperation to get the vaccination rate up and avoid future lockdowns.   It will be interesting to see how the younger generation takes up the offer. So far, if social media posts are anything to go by the under-40s I know are getting jabbed at a rapid rate.   Of course, our financial and economic fortunes are inextricably linked to the COVID vaccination rate. A low vaccination rate means higher risk of more widespread lockdowns, which we’re seeing this week acro ... Read the rest of entry »

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