How to deal with financial stress

Times are tough. In a recent PWC survey, 50% of respondents said that having an adequate “emergency fund” topped their list of concerns, followed by retirement savings (29%) and then not being able to meet their monthly expenses. Financial stress is a major concern and can affect your health. One needs to have a plan to deal with it.

Investonline 2nd Quarter Market Outlook

Investment markets have not had a good start to 2018. The JSE All Share Index and the World MSCI Index are flat in 2018. The JSE fluctuated wildly some 5 to 7% a few times over the last 12 months but stayed range bound. Global markets were similar and the Rand remained volatile. The key is to understand what is leading to this volatility and muted returns, and what the outlook is going forward.

The Chinese Risk in Your Investment Portfolio

As global trade war risks are rising, it is important to ensure that your portfolio is appropriately diverse. A key area of risk is China where many South African investors have unknowingly committed to large exposures, due to the concentrated nature of the JSE. In a recent article from Allan Gray, they discuss China’s risk to SA investors.

Common Myths of Retirement Savings

In a recent Allan Gray article, they identify four common myths of saving for retirement. This is a very timely article as investment returns have been below average over the last three years and investors are becoming impatient. Hence, it’s important to remind yourself of these retirement savings myths.

Offshore Savings – Beware of Liquidity and Estate Taxes

Many South African citizens hold offshore savings without a clear understanding of the tax implications or the access to these investments after death.

Offshore savings form an important part of a diversified portfolio but it is important to ensure that your offshore savings are structured correctly so that you do not overpay in tax and estate duties upon your passing. Equally important is that your investments are easily accessible to your beneficiaries.

The most efficient solution is to ‘wrap’ your assets in a vehicle such as an offshore wrapper. This protects the assets from requiring winding up by a foreign executor and provides immediate access to your beneficiaries upon your death.

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