Podcast: Catch 2022: What’s in store for the year ahead

Chief investment officers and economists assess the policy dilemmas and big investment themes of 2022.

In this 54 minutes podcast by Fidelity, Richard Edgar is joined by Steve Ellis, Global Chief Investment Officer for Fixed Income, Romain Boscher, Global Chief Investment Officer for Equities, Anna Stupnytska, Chief Economist, with additional contributions from Neil Cable, Head of European Real Estate investing.

Listen to the podcast here.

If you have questions and would like your financial situation to be evaluated, please email us on ds@bluerocke.com with your contacts, for an exploratory meeting, at our cost, not yours.

Source Fidelity – https://www.fidelity.com.au/insights/investment-articles/podcast-catch-2022-whats-in-store-for-the-year-ahead/

Fidelity’s CEO and CIO discuss the outlook for 2022

Fidelity International’s CEO Anne Richards and CIO Andrew McCaffery discuss the ‘Catch-2022’ policy paradox and the fifth industrial revolution arising from the need to get to net zero emissions. Hosted by Richard Edgar, Editor in Chief.

Watch the 9 minute video here.

If you have questions and would like your financial situation to be evaluated, please email us on ds@bluerocke.com with your contacts, for an exploratory meeting, at our cost, not yours.

Video source – Fidelity https://www.fidelityinternational.com/editorial/video/video-fidelitys-ceo-and-cio-discuss-the-outlook-for-2022-30c434-en5/

The superannuation puzzle piece you might not be thinking about

By Andrea Sophocleous

When it comes to super, the accepted wisdom is that performance is the most important consideration. That means we often ignore another critical part of our superannuation.

Most super funds include life insurance along with total and permanent disability (TPD) insurance for their members. In fact, more than 70 per cent of Australians who have life insurance do so through their superannuation. Some funds also offer income protection.

So, is it the right option for you?

Suzie Brown, general manager of MLC Wealth at MLC Life Insurance, lists lower premiums, convenience and fewer health checks as the key advantages of insurance through super.

“Because super funds buy insurance for groups of people, they’re paying a wholesale price so often the premiums cheaper. Payments are automatically deducted out of your super, meaning you don’t have to pay out of your own pocket,” explains Brown.

“And as you get cover automatically, you don’t have to do medical or health checks.”

Jeff Thurecht, personal financial adviser at Evalesco Financial Services, says insurance through super is a good choice for anyone working in a high-risk industry.

“There are high-risk occupations that are hard to get cover for [such as construction, mining, demolition, policing and firefighting, or even window cleaning if performed at great heights], so it makes sense to take advantage of group cover,” he says.

One thing to factor in, however, is that insurance through super can reduce your retirement savings because the premiums are deducted from your super balance, explains Thurecht.

“The great thing about compound interest is having that money growing year on year for 40 years, but any dollar taken out is losing that compound benefit. That doesn’t mean it’s not a worthwhile investment; you just have to make a conscious choice,” he says.

While the insurance you receive in super is a good safety net, you need to be aware if it’s sufficient for your specific circumstances.

“Typically, the default levels of cover in insurance through super are set fairly low because they’re meant to be relevant for everybody,” Thurecht says.

“A good time to review your insurance is as soon as your financial circumstances change – whether it’s taking out a mortgage, having children or increased earnings in your job. You can then look at whether increasing it within your super is a good way to go.”

According to Brown, the sort of questions you should be asking are: What am I paying? Do you have me listed as a smoker? Is my high-risk occupation covered?

“Being classified as a smoker or any other incorrect information could be costing you a loading on your premium,” she adds.

Making a personal choice

39-year-old carpenter Brian Hayes, whose work is primarily on building sites, pays for liability insurance that covers him for any damage done to property or in the event of injury for which he’s at fault.

But he admits he’s not across the cover he receives as part of the insurance through his super. “It’s reassuring to know that I have the extra insurance, but I haven’t checked how much I’m paying in premiums or whether that’s the best option for me,” he says.

“Ideally, I’d like to have the largest possible super balance once I retire, but I’ll be exploring all my options before I make a decision on whether to stick with insurance through super or change to personal insurance.”

Thurecht says that for someone like Hayes, who is assessing whether to pay for insurance through their super balance or through personal savings, it’s important to remember that it’s all your money.

“Consider aspects such as the cost of policies inside or outside of super and whether there are any tax benefits (such as the tax deductibility of income protection) that may come your way,” he says.

And for those who might be looking to switch to a new super fund, first check whether you’re able to transfer the insurance and will continue to be covered.

According to Brown, approaching a new super fund through the lens of insurance will stand you in good stead. “When you’re consolidating or moving super funds, insurance needs to be a consideration,” she says.

“You need to be comfortable that the new fund provides cover for your occupation and your age. If you have pe-existing medical conditions, you may not be able to get the cover you want.”

Overall, if you’re unsure, you can start by talking to your super fund or a financial adviser for a tailored solution.

If you have questions and would like your financial situation to be evaluated, please email us on ds@bluerocke.com with your contacts, for an exploratory meeting, at our cost, not yours.

Article source MLC https://www.mlc.com.au/personal/blog/2021/11/the-superannuation-puzzle-piece

Festive season closure dates

Dear All

Our office will be closed from end of day on Wednesday 22 December 2021 and will re-open on Thursday 6 January 2022.

From all of us here at BlueRocke Investment Advisors, we thank you for your support and we wish you and your families a safe and Merry Christmas followed by a Happy New Year!

As mentioned below, if any urgent matters crop up during the holiday season, please email Dev with the caption “URGENT” in the subject line and these will be attended to.

Back in business: How you can make the most of 2022

Pent-up consumer demand promises a strong economic return, which bodes well for small businesses hoping for a return to normalcy in 2022. But that doesn’t mean business as usual will see you succeed – use these tactics to give your business a lead over the competition.

Tactic 1: Take. A. Break.

The pandemic has made for a bumpy business ride, so make sure your head is in the game.

COVID fatigue and mental exhaustion has been very real as business owners navigate gruelling lockdowns and often-changing trading rules. It’s important to allow yourself to mentally catch up, says Eric Tjoeng, CEO and founder of business growth strategy firm BGES.

“Rest over the break and come into the new year with the right mindset so that you can be more strategic and holistic about approaching business,” Tjoeng says. This healthy mindset will enable you to make the most of the opportunities that present themselves, and help you deal with ongoing uncertainty.

And while the new year may bring busy times, business owners should spend more time setting the strategy than running the business, given the vast number of changes in consumer behaviour, Tjoeng adds.

Tactic 2: Get out of the weeds

Accept that business won’t just snap back to pre-COVID times. Be holistic by thinking big picture and long term about issues such as supply chains and staffing requirements, Tjoeng says.

“COVID has changed certain consumer behaviours, so business owners need to accept that their own expectations and behaviours must catch up, because there’s no going back to the way it was,” he says.

This means understanding new buying behaviours and how they relate to your business, and accommodating what people want rather than how you want to operate. On top of this, ensure that suppliers, contractors and employees understand your business strategy and how they contribute to its successful implementation.

“There are opportunities out there for the right product or service, which will find enough volume and margin to sustain itself and grow the business,” Tjoeng says.

Tactic 3: Work out your greatest value

Time has often felt elastic during the pandemic. More time at home and less time doing the things we love may have left some with an altered perspective.

From an administrative point of view, it’s important that business owners understand what their time is worth and how they’re spending it. And importantly, whether it’s ultimately resulting in sales, says Bill Lang, executive director of Small Business Australia.

Where you should spend your time will vary. But start by making sure you have a deep understanding of your customers, what they value, and how they research and buy your category of products and services, Lang says.

“Increasingly, the use of simple and integrated digital tools that are rented by the month can save owners and employees hours of time each week,” he says. “Investing in these tools and processes can increase value to the customer, employees and business owner.”

Tactic 4: Secure your own financial future

If you dipped into your superannuation during the pandemic or haven’t been topping it up due to economic uncertainty, now is the time to get back on track.

The Super Guarantee is 10 per cent, meaning that 10 per cent of what you earn every single week should be hitting your super account. That way, the wonders of compound interest will help get your retirement plans back on track.

The best way to achieve this is to set up a direct debit, so that the cash hits your super account without you having to think about it. Depending on your age and stage of life, you might want to consider increasing your super deposits above 10 per cent, particularly if you’re closer to retirement age.

Tactic 5: Stay nimble

In this ‘new normal’ world, there will need to be new normal ways of operating a business, so it’s time to recalibrate your plans.

Major changes to consumer behaviour, such as less foot traffic in CBDs and huge growth in ecommerce, have changed the ballgame, explains Bruce Billson, Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman.

These are seismic shifts across the economy that are impacting how businesses need to operate. “Some have been well equipped to navigate the economic challenges that have stood in the way of small businesses and have weathered the COVID storm, while others have not,” Billson says.

Businesses that have been in a holding pattern need to accept change will be required, anticipate what that might mean for business, and recalibrate their plans, he adds.

“There’s still a possibility that there will be further COVID-related impacts on the economy, even in terms of changing expectations from consumers. Things won’t just bounce back to where they were.”

Tactic 6: Become a digital ninja

Digital marketing became even more crucial during the pandemic, so setting up the systems to ensure you’re nurturing those connected relationships with customers even as they return to your store is important, Billson says.

“Businesses have nurtured a more connected relationship with customers during COVID, with stronger connections through social media,” he says. “These conversations have been really helpful guide to stay close to changing customer preferences.”

Being able to fine tune your offering and identify new opportunities can grow sales as well as build strong relationships with customers, Billson says. For example, he’s seen examples of florists using digital marketing to reimagine themselves as the antidote to social isolation.

“Sending flowers as a source for addressing social isolation and conveying affection in a much deeper way, given people haven’t been able to have that contact, was really clever,” he says.

If you have questions and would like your financial situation to be evaluated, please email us on ds@bluerocke.com with your contacts, for an exploratory meeting, at our cost, not yours.

Article source: MLC https://www.mlc.com.au/personal/blog/2021/11/back-in-business


Transferring your wealth to the next generation

Key takeaways

  • Start the conversation early so younger generations understand what they’re likely to inherit
  • There are strategies that can help to ensure your wealth passes in a tax-efficient manner
  • Testamentary trusts can be beneficial if you want your wealth to remain in your direct blood line.

We spend a lifetime generating wealth but few of us spend the time to ensure it’s passed on in the way we want it to.

Having a plan in place for how and when you want your wealth to be transferred, will help all parties understand your intentions and the process.

While there isn’t a one-size-fits-all approach, we’ve highlighted a few considerations to get you started.

Start the conversation early

Before any plan is implemented, it’s crucial that families have honest conversations about their wealth so younger generations understand what they’re likely to inherit.

This will help your beneficiaries prepare and have a planned purpose for how it should be used. It also means they have time to seek professional help if needed.

Another benefit of these conversations is they present an opportunity to talk about any long-term goals you may have. For instance, you may want your beneficiaries to set up a retirement account, allocate it to their kids’ education or support a cause you love.

Seek help from a professional

If you value the experience of experts in other aspects of your life, don’t discount it when it comes to managing your life savings.

A financial adviser is not just someone who helps with investments. Their job is to help you with every aspect of your financial life—savings, insurance, tax, debt—while keeping you on track to achieve your goals.

More importantly, they can answer questions like:

  • What age can I stop working and retire?
  • What strategies can I use to build my wealth?
  • How can I ensure my wealth is transferred to my children?

If your to-do list is endless and you never quite have time to tackle your personal finances, a financial adviser may help to set you on the right track.

Tax implications

Depending on your circumstances, there are strategies that can help to ensure your wealth passes in a tax-efficient manner.


One of the most common methods of wealth transfer is through super. But when a family member dies and their super is passed to beneficiaries—such as their children who are financially independent—death benefit taxes on some or all of the benefit may apply1.

The payment of super benefits to beneficiaries on death may also be challenged by those who felt they didn’t receive the share they were entitled to.

One option that may help to avoid these outcomes is to withdraw super after you’re retired, rather than on death. This can also reduce death benefit taxes too.


Transferring wealth via gifting can be a good option as you won’t have to pay tax on the money you give. It can however, affect you financially if you’re receiving social security benefits and you exceed the gift limits.

You’re entitled to gift up to $10,000 in cash gifts and assets each financial year and up to $30,000 over five consecutive years2. If you exceed this limit it may reduce your social security benefit.

An alternative to gifting that you may prefer is loaning wealth to family members. A loan to a family member will not affect your social security benefit and can usually be recalled if, for example, the family member’s marriage or de facto relationship breaks down.

Capital Gains Tax

If you choose to transfer the ownership of assets while you’re still alive, a capital gains tax (CGT) event may occur. By contrast, CGT will generally not apply at the time ownership of assets is transferred to beneficiaries via a deceased estate.

Consider setting up a trust

Some people choose to pass their wealth to their intended beneficiaries via a testamentary trust rather than leave all their assets directly to them.

One of the main benefits of testamentary trusts is they can enable your wealth to remain in your bloodline (ie pass to your lineal descendants). It also enables wealth to pass in a manner that protects beneficiaries who may be vulnerable due to marriage or a relationship breakdown, or due to their profession or a business they operate.

In other cases, testamentary trusts can simply preserve wealth by ensuring it is not misspent by beneficiaries on poor lifestyle choices or investment decisions.

These trusts, which are written into the will when planning your estate affairs can have significant tax benefits too.

For example, if a beneficiary receives their inheritance under their personal name, they may be liable to pay additional tax on investment earnings or capital gains at their personal marginal tax rate. However, if they take the inheritance through a testamentary trust, particularly where the beneficiary has a high personal marginal tax rate, they may not be liable for as much tax as income can be generally be split with the beneficiary’s other family members, including young children.

Depending on your circumstances, you may even choose to set up separate trusts for each beneficiary. This will enable them to invest the way they want and manage their finances independently over the long-term.

Write a will and update it

One of the simplest things that people often overlook is writing a will. This document is the bones to any successful wealth transfer plan and must be updated regularly to ensure any major life changes are accounted for. This can include anything from getting married or having children, to selling the family home.

1Australian Taxation Office – Tax on benefits: https://www.ato.gov.au/individuals/super/withdrawing-and-using-your-super/tax-on-benefits 10 March 2021

2Australian Government Services Australia – Gifting: https://www.servicesaustralia.gov.au/individuals/topics/gifting/27276 17 June 2020

If you have questions and would like your financial situation to be evaluated, please email us on ds@bluerocke.com with your contacts, for an exploratory meeting, at our cost, not yours.

Article source MLC https://www.mlc.com.au/personal/blog/2021/04/transferring-your-wealth