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ATO warning on aggressive tax planning

Posted on April 20, 2015 by admin


The ATO is warning taxpayers of aggressive tax planning strategies will attract a significant amount of scrutiny. A number of specific strategies have been flagged as aggressive in a video named ‘Tax Tricks That Will Get You In Trouble’. When it comes to tax avoidance schemes, it is not uncommon for individuals to be duped by a fraudulent investment opportunity or given bad advice from an unqualified financial planner. The advice that the ATO give is fairly straightforward: if a tax planning strategy seems too good to be true then it probably is. This is also advice that should be applied to investment returns that seem unrealistically high. Multiple research studies have proven that people with higher rates of education and investment experience are actually more likely to fall for fraudulent investment scams because they are less likely to seek an outside opinion.


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Australians warned that $1 million superannuation may be insufficient

Posted on by admin


For some time now, superannuation experts have been warning Australians not to be distracted by the seemingly large size of their retirement nest eggs. While the total balance of many super accounts may sound impressive, it can distract from the reality of the income stream it is likely to deliver. Between longer life expectancies, inflation, and low interest rates, retirement savings are not always delivering the expected retirement income. Obviously, a range individual circumstances will dictate how much an individual will need to cover their expenses in retirement. In particular, single retirees will tend to have significantly higher living expenses than those who are co-habitating. Furthermore, the trajectory of interest rates is a determining factor in how a nest egg  will perform in pension phase. And, as we all know, accurately predicting the future of interest rates is an impossible undertaking.


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Australians set to hit by ‘bracket creep’

Posted on April 7, 2015 by admin


The government’s tax white paper has revealed that in the next twelve months the average Australian will be pushed into the second highest tax bracket. As average wages become higher due to inflation, but do not actually rise in real terms, many taxpayers will be pushed up into a higher tax bracket. This phenomenon is known as bracket creep. Currently, the average Australian wage is around $75 000, meaning that a majority of the population sits in the third highest tax bracket ($3572 plus 32.5c for every dollar over $32 000. However, by 2016-17 the average wage will be around $80 000, pushing people into the second highest marginal tax bracket. Some experts are claiming that concerns surrounding bracket creep are overstated and that the government is most likely adjust marginal tax rates in response to wage inflation.


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Managing risk in your SMSF

October 12, 2018

SMSFs provide the trustee autonomy and an increased opportunity to maximise your retirement savings. However, an investment strategy must be accompanied by a risk management plan should some of your investments come up short.

Consider the following risk management strategies:

Diversification
Diversification reduces risk by investing in many different assets including property, annuities and equities. By spreading your earnings across several investments you minimise the risks to your retirement nest egg that can occur if one investment suffers a loss or a disappointing return. Organise your target returns according to your asset class and establish the accepted variation range from this target. This allows you to track your investment portfolio and whether it is setting you on the right financial path.

Liquidity
If you tie up your money in assets like property, then you may run short on cash. It is important that you have cash to cover the costs of running your SMSF and in the case of a member’s total and permanent disablement. If you’re also forced to sell an asset to get this cash the market conditions may not be ideal, and you could receive a disappointing return because you need cash in a rush.