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What needs to be done to improve South Africa?

In my 30 years in the investment market, I can’t remember the mood in the country being this negative – and that is despite an exceptional Rugby World Cup win! Other than Ramaphosa being removed as President, I can’t think how things could get any worse. I believe, economically, the country is near its low point and that this is being reflected in investment markets. Allan Gray has written an article outlining 10 critical areas that need ‘doing’ to get the country to start growing, which we have summarised for you.

You must have a plan to meet your financial goals

The Springbok strategy this past weekend against Wales was not pretty, but it worked. Just as the Boks have a plan that plays to their strengths and produces a win, so too should each person have their own unique plan to meet their financial goals. The plan does not need to be dynamic or creative, but it must be tailored to your needs. It starts with engaging with a qualified independent financial advisor, as recommended by Allan Gray. Please read Allan Gray’s views on the role of an advisor in your investment success.

Investonline – 2019 4th Quarter Outlook

As our hope for a material recovery in the economy fades, let’s not confuse this with good investment opportunities. We need to be realistic about what the environment presents and position ourselves according to our own personal risk profiles. Please read our fourth quarter economic and market outlook report where we highlight the difference between economic activity and investment opportunity.

Two important choices when you are retiring

When you retire, you have two important choices to make with your retirement savings, accumulated throughout your working life. These decisions require careful thought, which could have a material impact on your retirement lifestyle.

Forecasting the Rand Exchange Rate

The value of the Rand is a hotly debated subject as its volatility impacts on both our spending and financial planning. As an investment analyst/manager for the past 30 years, the one “investment input” I’ve observed experts get wrong most often, is forecasting the Rand exchange rate in the short to medium term (1 to 5 years). It is so difficult to predict that it has led to most SA fund managers no longer forecasting the Rand. Therefore, it is important to try and understand what drives the Rand and how as an investor you should incorporate foreign exchange into your investment portfolio.

Investment Decisions in a Negative Environment

Constant negative news – both locally and offshore – can be distressing as well as becoming tiring and frustrating. Unfortunately, we can’t ignore it, so it’s best we learn how to deal with it, especially as it impacts your finances. When we are emotional, we tend to become more ‘one dimensional’ and don’t always make well considered decisions, which can be harmful. We draw on a recent article from Allan Gray that focuses on behavioral biases in order to identify them when they occur and to help us mitigate them to ensure rational decision making.

Invest in the top-performing Worldwide Flexible Fund – Prosperity WW Flexible FoF

The Prosperity Worldwide Flexible Fund of Funds, which I co-manage, continues to produce solid investment returns. Over the last 12 months, the fund is up 17.5% and is the number one performing fund out of 73 funds in its Morningstar Worldwide Flexible category. Since inception (September 2014), the fund is up an average 9.3% per annum. Key to the fund’s steady, good returns, is its very disciplined investment strategy, which takes positions in irrationally priced asset classes with a very tight risk management overlay. We expect these steady returns to continue, making the fund well suited for the current volatile environment.

A better investment strategy in a bad environment

If you can’t tolerate poor investment returns any longer, a solution is to “park” your money in a conservative portfolio comprising mainly income funds. This “income” strategy has yielded a steady average 8.7% p.a. return over the last four years. By parking your investment in these low-risk funds, you will avoid market declines while still earning a steady return above inflation. We continue to monitor the market environment and investors can switch into a higher allocation of growth assets when the environment improves. Read more about the strategy and recommended funds.

Guidance for Your 2019 Tax Submissions

The 2019 tax filing season has started. There are a few important changes to be aware of and we have tabled the various deadline dates for the different types of taxpayers.

2019 Third Quarter Market Outlook

The stock market continues to be a roller-coaster ride for equity investors, experiencing regular ups and downs. Low-risk investors continue to smile as they enjoy a smoother journey.

We discuss the reasons for the ups and downs in the market and provide our investment outlook for the remainder of the year.

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