Tuesday, December 05, 2006


Several interesting posts have passed through my Google Reader account over the last few days. I've been noting them in the sidebar (automatically created by Google Reader), but without a new post you have no reason to come here and see them.

  1. Surveys show that the public is sceptical about recent changes to tax on superannuation. (from Robin Bowerman over at News.com.au Smart Investing Blog). For non-Australian readers -- superannuation is our tax-advantaged retirement scheme. Employers are required to contribute 9% of employee wages, but unlike US Social Security the contributions go into individual accounts. Most Australians are now on defined contribution plans. Contributions are taxed at 15% on the way in (the top personal tax rate is 48.5%). Income accumulates tax-free. Withdrawals were previously taxed as ordinary income (with a credit of 15% for amounts taxed on the way in). Employees can 'salary-sacrifice' additional contributions (basically you tell your employer to reduce your taxable income and put the difference into your superannuation account), or make after-tax contributions. The recent change was to make withdrawals tax-free after age 60 (you can start making withdrawals at 55), and change the contribution limits (both pre-tax and after-tax) to reduce the amount contributed in the few years immediately before retirement. The old limits were age-based and increased with age. The new limits are the same for everyone.
  2. Goldman Sachs is now cloning hedge funds. They've put together an index that replicates hedge fund returns.
  3. From the Smart Investing Blog again, Terrence Odean and Brad Barber have written a paper showing that women investors are less overconfident and therefore less likely to make the mistakes that overconfident investors make. This is one I'll have to download and read.
  4. And on a lighter note, The Onion has a story titled "Brash Young Floor Trader Trying to Rally Dow All By Self."
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Anonymous Fiona said...

I am one of the skeptical ones. I do not think the superannuation changes will be sustainable. However, my disbelief is probably a product of knowing very little about superannuation.
Thanks for posting

2:24 pm  

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