One day, there will be a market wrap that doesn’t have any references to the Trade War, but it is not this day! Global markets are trending lower this week in response to Trump claiming that if a deal isn’t made between the US and China in December “I’ll just raise the tariffs even higher”. It’s a good excuse to review our Trade War cycle flowchart!
Australian shares fared worse than their global counterparts this week thanks to news that Westpac had breached Australia’s anti-money laundering and counter-terrorism financing laws 23 million times, leading to headlines such as this!
Some investors were also spooked by revelations by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development downgraded their growth forecasts for 2020. Should you care about what economists think? Tune in to next week’s TW3 to find out!
Don’t Read Financial News
For most investors, the biggest killer of returns is thinking that a major market sell-off is around the corner. This is completely understandable. If someone is putting their life savings at risk, they’ll want to play it safe. The issue is that there is always something to worry about, and some unscrupulous media outlets cash in on investor nerves with headlines like these:
The article above was written in late December last year after global shares had fallen around 15%. A nervous investor may have read this headline and concluded that they should cut their losses and play it safe – and they would have missed on a spectacular 25% rebound in shares in 2019!
If you read an article and are thinking about whether you should tinker with your portfolio, check whether the author is a reporter or an investment professional. A reporter is paid to increase readership, whether their material is relevant or useful to is often a secondary consideration. We highly doubt the author of the article above paid any price for claiming that a shoddy market indicator was reliable!
Most Liveable Suburbs in Sydney
According to Domain’s Liveable Sydney report for 2019 , the Lower North Shore is the place to be! The report rates all 569 Sydney suburbs on metrics such as culture, crime rates, education and accessibility to generate a liveability score, with Milsons Point taking out the top spot in 2019 after being the bridesmaid in the 2016 report! You can take a quiz here to see which suburb Domain thinks is best for you!
Of course, your ideal suburb depends on what you’re looking for. Despite being the 3rd most liveable suburb in Sydney, the thought of living in the Sydney CBD would make many people shudder. Nic currently lives in suburb #267 because being childless he cares more about cafes and culture than nearby schools and parks. When the kids come around he’d like to live in #27 to raise them in a good suburb that’s not too far from work. When (or perhaps if?) they move out of home he’d like to settle down in #99, which gets a low score because of its distance from the CBD – exactly what he’s after in retirement!
Goals Are For Losers!
Whilst clearing out his inbox this week Nic came across the following sentence:
Nic couldn’t help but think of a key lesson from a great book by Scott Adams, author of the Dilbert comic series – goals are for losers. For most people, the journey is more exciting than the end destination. Markus Persson, the creator of the wildly popular videogame Minecraft, sold his company to Microsoft for $2.5b, only to subsequently lapse into depression. When he sold his company, he also sold his reason for getting up in the morning.
So what can we learn from these stories of gleeful and melancholy billionaires? The thrill is in the chase. It’s all too common to hear about someone feeling lost after they retire or when their kids leave the nest, as their careers and/or family had been their main source of purpose and daily structure for decades. The role of a financial adviser is to help their clients live their best life by prudently managing their money. What does your best life look like after work and kids? That’s for you to discover, and we’re here to help!