Fundamental Indexing: active management performance with index fees?

The case for passive investing is often couched in terms of the inability of active managers to “beat the market”, with the market in turn usually defined as a capitalisation weighted equity index such as the S&P/ASX 200. Yet as this note will demonstrate, using an alternative approach to passive indexing can potentially be used

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U.S Market Outlook: back to 2004?

Amid the geopolitical concerns simmering across the globe, the upcoming United States earnings reporting season has received less than usual attention. That’s a shame because early indications suggest corporate earnings are travelling reasonably well.  In fact, despite high valuations, US stocks could keep rising if earnings continue to grow – as seen, for example, between

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Thoughts on Australia’s housing “bubble”

Media commentary has been dominated in recent weeks by talk of Australia’s growing “housing bubble.” This note attempts to provide a factual perspective. It suggests that while Sydney house prices are now starting to reach past peaks in terms of mortgage (un)affordability, they are still a little below their average long-run premium to national house

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Understanding ETF liquidity

Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs) are well known for their low cost and diversification benefits, however, their level of liquidity and ability to closely track the price of the underlying securities they hold are advantageous for investors but tend to be less well known and sometimes misunderstood. To understand how ETFs maintain this ability, it is

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Global Market Outlook: April 2017 – European Relief

Global stocks rose further in March, though more modestly than in February. While an earlier than expected Fed rate hike and Trump’s failure to pass healthcare reforms dented investor confidence, sentiment was supported by continued solid global economic reports and failure of the far-right parties to gain power in the Dutch national election. The outlook for

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Give your portfolio the “EX” factor

When it comes to the Australian sharemarket, there are a couple of mantles Australians can claim over our international counterparts. Firstly, Australians have some of the highest levels of share ownership in the world, with 33% of us owning shares directly*.  Secondly, by global standards,  the concentration of this ownership in large-cap shares is relatively

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Financials flex their muscles: what’s good for banks is good for the economy

The decision by major banks over recent weeks to unilaterally raise interest rates on residential property loans, especially for investors, appears to be officially sanctioned and could helpfully ease demand pressures in the Sydney and Melbourne housing markets. That said, greed can be good! These actions could also conveniently help boost bank net-interest margins, which

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