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Fund fees eating away at retirees’ cash Posted on Feb 22, 2015 by editor

Super

As interest rates plummet, retirees who are relying on interest from cash savings in their superannuation accounts may be losing out. The reason for this is that excessive fund fees can eat away at cash balances. Without decent returns from interest rates to offset these losses, the results for super funds can be grim. Despite the fact that the Reserve Bank reporting that cash deposits in banks returned between 3.3%-3.7% in 2014, returns on cash deposits in super funds were hovering down at around 2.5%. For retirees, who so often elect to invest their super in cash for stability and […]

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Salary sacrificing into your super Posted on Feb 18, 2015 by editor

Super

Salary sacrificing part of your income into your superannuation brings about a lot of financial benefits. Employers in Australia are required to contribute the equivalent of 9.5% of an employee’s salary into a nominated superannuation fund. On top of these contributions, employees can request that their employer reduce their salary and direct the additional cash into their superannuation. There are a number of benefit to salary sacrificing into your superannuation: 1. Reduce your tax liability: Superannuation contributions are taxed at the low rate of 15% (or 30% for individuals earning over $300 000). Therefore, by making additional contributions from your […]

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ATO focusing on personal electronic devices Posted on Feb 16, 2015 by editor

Tax

This financial year, the ATO has announced that it will be focussing on specific types of deductible claims. In previous years, the tax office has announced specific industries or professions that will be subject to particular scrutiny. The biggest announcement this year is that deductions for personal electronic devices such as smartphones, tablets and laptops will be closely examined. Last year, Australians claimed almost $19.5 billion in deductible expenses, and personal electronic devices represent the fastest growing sector in this area. In order to make sure that you are claiming the right tax deductions for a personal electronic device, you […]

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Income protection insurance: An often overlooked tax deduction Posted on Feb 11, 2015 by editor

Tax

Many Australians overlook the fact that they can claim the premiums paid for income protection insurance as a tax deduction. Income protection insurance policies are designed to protect you in the event that you become unable to work due to illness or injury. Most policies will pay you a pre-determined portion of your previous income, meaning that you will be able to maintain necessities such as mortgage repayments and groceries. It is advisable for everyone to think about whether or not they can afford not to have income protection insurance. However, if you are the breadwinner in your household or […]

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Savings strategy for over 55s Posted on Feb 10, 2015 by editor

Super

If you are over the age of 55 and are still earning income through employment, then you may be able to make significant tax savings using the transition to retirement scheme. When you use the transition to retirement strategy, you have two superannuation accounts. One account receives your employer’s contributions and any additional contributions that you make (concessional or non-concessional). The other account is your retirement income account, where you place a portion of your savings and pay yourself a pension. The advantages to this strategy are that you can enjoy the tax benefits of making contributions to your superannuation […]

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Superannuation balances boosted by international shares Posted on Feb 1, 2015 by editor

Super

Findings of a study conducted by research firm SuperResearch reveal that in 2014 investment in international shares provided superannuation accounts with impressive returns. Superannuation funds reported an average 7.5% return in 2014, with international shares providing a significant contribution. The falling Australian dollar, which tumbled almost 8% against the USD last year, has also benefited super balances. By contrast, the SuperResearch report found that investments in Australian shares had yielded modest returns, averaging just 1.4%.

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