Personal Finance

The perils of sudden wealth

Two lottery wins in two consecutive years and the combined total of $5.4 million gone in just over two decades. Evelyn Adams, who achieved the Great American Dream twice when she won the New Jersey lottery in 1985 and 1986, is now destitute and living in a trailer. The tragedy is that hers is not…

Fiddling at the margins

Australians are happy enough to mortgage themselves to the hilt to buy residential property, thinking nothing of borrowing against the equity in their homes for a deposit to buy an investment property. But when it comes to borrowing to invest in the sharemarket, it seems we’re a lot less keen to go into debt. According…

Fund managers just as prone to bad decision making as DIY investors

The funds management industry is built on the premise that investors are better off entrusting their investments to experts who take a disciplined analytical approach to deciding which stocks to buy or sell. Individual investors, the thinking goes, are too governed by emotions like greed and fear to make intelligent investment decisions. But are fund…

Weird and wonderful investment ideas

As the sharemarket stagnates and returns on property investments slide it may be time to follow the lead of a growing number of lateral thinkers who are diversifying into non-traditional asset classes. The alternative investment universe presents many weird and wonderful options ranging from first edition comic books and antique toy collections, to football and…

Is your mobile phone dependency costing you a fortune?

Mobile phone providers have come up with nifty ways to not only dominate our free time – with addictive-services like texting, downloading ringtones to video messaging – but also charging us for the privilege. You text (SMS) your partner about dinner arrangements five times in an afternoon at 30 cents a pop, you check your…

Climate change and consumers: hot air or real deal?

At present, when what Australians say they will do to help the environment is laid side-by-side with what they actually do, there is definitely a gap. However, if you’re stgeloping or marketing goods and services with a green hue, the gap looks to close over time and there may be more customers who are willing…