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Are we in another 1990s tech bubble?
A quick look at the valuations of the so called FAANMG group of stocks – Facebook, Apple, Amazon, Netflix, Microsoft and Google – and it certainly feels like we’re in a tech stocks bubble a-la the late 1990s. In a short video, Shane Oliver, Chief Economist, sheds light on the FAANMG valuations.
SMSFs bump up their cash: why and what to do during a correction
According to the SuperConcepts’ SMSF Investment Patterns Survey June 2017, super funds held 20% of their funds in cash in 2017. This is compared to 18% as at 30 June 2016.
What can we learn from Black Monday?
Valuations, as measured by simple PE ratios, are certainly comparable to valuations right before the massive 1987 correction that left investors reeling and portfolios underwater the ensuing two years.
What I learned from Richard H. Thaler
"We tend to regard events as obvious in hindsight. By fostering the illusion that the world is more predictable than it really is, overconfidence tends to be promoted."
Would $300k into super make you want to downsize?
“This is attractive to people considering downsizing anyway. But it doesn’t seem to be pushing anyone who wasn’t already thinking of selling their home down that path,” says Kanoniuk.
Cryptocurrencies: Caution Needed
Cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, are digital currencies that are designed to be secure and often anonymous. The rise in their popularity and number of new entrants in this space has triggered regulators to act, to restrict them, most recently in China.
Could the ‘SMSF trade’ be coming to an end?
Owning these shares has not only been an inexpensive strategy for self directed investors, it has also been lucrative.
Goodbye QE, hello QT
Market watchers and investment professionals alike see the Fed’s announcement as a pivotal time for global financial markets since the actions taken by central banks in the wake of the 2008 crisis.
The new rules of salary sacrificing versus personal super contributions
“Since 1 July this year anybody who is eligible has been able to make a tax-deductible contribution to superannuation,” says Graeme Colley, Executive Manager, SMSF Technical and Private Wealth, SuperConcepts.
Is bitcoin an investible asset?
Moves by the Japanese government to recognise the bitcoin as an investment-grade asset, and high turnover in bitcoin trading in China, have turned investors’ attentions towards the crypto currency.
Why it’s important to look beyond quality
Steele and his investment team won’t invest in companies unless they have ticked off all three drivers – competitive advantage, superior capital allocation and the ability to benefit from long term durable growth themes.
What happened in the last Korean War?
Share prices surged during the early stages of the War but then the Australian market fell by 36% from 7 May 1951 to 29 September 1952 and then rose only very weakly in 1953-54.
Age pension: do you qualify?
The age pension means tests changed on 1 January this year. This has significantly reduced the upper assets test for people receiving a part age pension. It has also substantially increased the lower assets test for people receiving the full age pension.
Passive investing and other disruptive themes
Historically, these premises have held for the major market indices and investors have achieved satisfactory returns from index investing.
Are ‘fake crises’ worth the worry?
A fake crisis can inflict heavy losses on an investor who dumps quality assets at depressed prices during the panic but provides the opportunity for an investor to acquire good assets cheaply.
What’s next for SMSF regulation?
On 1 July this year the most significant changes to the superannuation system in more than a decade came into force, with more changes slated for future years.
CGT provisions: need to know
Self-managed super fund (SMSF) investors have a one-off opportunity to re-set their asset values prior to the $1.6 million transfer balance cap being introduced on 1 July.
How will the Federal Budget impact your investments?
Our experts analyse the implications of this week's budget announcement on infrastructure, property, fixed income, and equities.
Perfect storm brewing for local retailers
There is a sector on the ASX whose risks include, but are far from limited to, exposure to the slowing construction-activity cycle. That sector is retail and consensus is not considering the headwinds.
ATO collaborates with SMSFs on compliance
The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) has reviewed the approach it takes to self-managed super fund (SMSF) compliance, and it is important trustees understand this change and how it affects them. The new stance is good news for SMSFs and should help them better appreciate their obligations and stay within the law.
Should we exclude companies purely on ethical grounds?
Fund managers used to be discouraged, or even prohibited, from taking ethical issues into account when making investment decisions on behalf of their clients.
SMSFs must get binding nominations right
New laws that have changed the nature of the super system mean many self-managed super fund (SMSF) members need to ensure the death nominations related to their fund are still appropriate.
SMSF contribution levels almost triple in response to super changes becoming law
SMSF trustees looking to make the most of the current rules have significantly increased contributions, according to the latest SuperConcepts SMSF Investment Patterns Survey.
Super changes are coming – 2 things you can do now
In this video Shane Oliver, Head of Investment Strategy and Chief Economist, AMP Capital provides an overview of the key super changes coming into effect from 1 July 2017 and what these could mean for investors.
How Trump drives high business expectations
US small business expectations are high under a Trump presidency but reality and fundamentals rather than sentiment will need to kick-in soon to justify recent market gains.
Control drives SMSF members
New research shows a desire to gain greater control over their assets is the main reason why investors choose to start a SMSF.
Why investors (should) care about diversity
In an increasingly complicated and fast-moving world, companies are likely to be most successful when they have assembled diverse teams who understand customers and disrupters.
New super rules passed by Parliament
Parliament recently passed legislation that has reduced the money retail investors can transfer into the superannuation environment and still enjoy tax benefits.
Five questions after Super Scott’s Santa surprise
The lucky folk who have had their superannuation retirement savings subject to hot debate recently have some big decisions to make over the next six months. We highlight five questions of critical importance.
Complete our annual SMSF Suite survey for your chance to win a $3,000 Flight Centre voucher
AMP Capital's annual SMSF Suite survey is now open until midnight Tuesday 6th December.
Super reform: the latest legislative changes
Legislation has been introduced into parliament to enact the super reforms announced in the 2016/17 Federal Budget.
President Donald Trump: Implications for investors and Australia
Donald Trump’s election as President of the United States risks ushering in a period of policy uncertainty which could cause further share market weakness in the short term.
US presidential election: risks and opportunities
This article draws on the insights of AMP Capital’s investment teams to reflect on the implications of the two outcomes of the US election and compares and contrasts the candidates’ policies.
Renewable energy: the power is back in our hands
The next 12 months in particular will see critical changes and developments to the renewable energy sector as Australians start to take advantage of the new opportunities to manage their own energy destiny and energy costs.
New RBA chief outlines thoughts on inflation
The Reserve Bank of Australia’s new Governor Philip Lowe gave his first speech last week at a Citibank conference.
SMSF Pulse competition
Is your SMSF portfolio performing? Compare your asset mix to win fine wine
Summary of September super announcements
The major amendments to the Government's super reforms, announced on 15 September 2016, are summarised by SuperConcepts' technical team.
Gold can play a role in SMSF portfolios
Only a tiny proportion of SMSF assets are invested in physical gold, but it’s worth considering in a world of uncertainty and volatility, especially when interest rates are low.
Results season 2016: winners and losers
While company full-year results for the 2016 financial year were generally flat, there are signs that, when half-year results are released next February, this trend will have reversed.
How Canberra explained the super changes to me
If we can believe the rumours, Federal Cabinet is busy working on ways to make its proposed superannuation policies more palatable.
Treasurer says he will not revisit super changes
For those expecting changes in the proposed super rules, here’s what the Treasurer said: “The changes that we put forward … I certainly have no intention of revisiting them.”
The cash rate reduction and your portfolio
Following the RBA cash rate cut in August to 1.5%, the lowest its ever been, its important for SMSF investors to understand the implications for their investment portfolio.
Re-contributions another victim of Budget
Re-contribution strategies are widely-used to minimise the impact of the so-called ‘death tax’ on death benefit lump sums paid to adult children of deceased superannuation members. Unfortunately, it could be a casualty of the proposed new rules for non-concessional contributions contained in the Federal Budget.
Low SMSF returns highlight value of retirement advice
Much has been made of the current low-return environment and its potentially long-lasting consequences. People using retirement projection tools might find their return assumptions are unlikely to materialise.
Deriving an effective retirement income
The wealth industry’s focus on building retirement savings to a defined asset value should be replaced by aiming for a sustainable income level, argues Nobel Laureate Robert Merton.
Estate planning and your wishes after death
Estate planning involves making a lot of difficult decisions. Here, three often-overlooked issues are explored: power of attorney, superannuation death benefits, and insurance.
Why Australian investors use offshore funds
There are legitimate reasons to use an offshore financial centre, which should not be confused with a tax haven where data is withheld from tax or regulatory authorities in other countries.
Prepare to pay more for aged care
Residential aged care costs are difficult to understand at any time, but many aged care facilities are introducing new fees which make comparisons even more difficult as costs rise.
SMSF Weekly market update: Brexit, the Eurozone and the Federal election
Shane Oliver reviews the key political and economic developments over the last week and what these mean for financial markets.
How will Brexit affect key asset classes
AMP Capital's investment teams provide insights into the possible implications on key asset classes.
5 things to note about Brexit jitters
The Brexit vote is upon us in the week ahead and is contributing to market jitters.
The amazing world of exotic assets in SMSFs
SMSFs hold some of the most bizarre assets imaginable, challenging auditors required to value them and verify ownership. New rules and compliance obligations for trustees are fast approaching.
What to make of the Paris Climate Change Agreement
In December last year 195 countries came together in Paris as part of a United Nations initiative to discuss a new climate change agreement.
Commodities: has the trend changed?
Commodities and consequently resource companies do experience significant periods of trending so how can an investor actually makes money in resource companies?
Retrospectivity ain’t what it used to be
In recent months, both sides of politics have explained what they mean by ‘retrospective’ changes to policy, and their new superannuation rules fall into their own definitions.
Budget shocks limit large super balances
The radical changes to contribution caps and retrospective treatment of large balances in pension accounts will force many people to reconsider their retirement plans.
Budget 2016: Real reform or political platform?
We’ve seen governments ‘pledge and spend’ – but is it affordable?
AMP Capital forms alliance with BetaShares to launch exchange traded managed funds
Sign up to our newsletter to get updated when the exchange traded managed funds launch. Use the form on the right hand side >
What to expect in this year’s ‘pre-election budget’
Election budget to focus on reforms to taxation and superannuation
We are interested in hearing your stories
Would you like to share your experiences of managing your SMSF in SMSF News?
SMSF weekly market update: spotlight on Australian earnings
Stronger than feared profit results and reasonable economic data are among the factors steering Australia away from a recession.
Check the ‘pulse’ of your SMSF portfolio
A new asset allocation comparative tool, SMSF Pulse is now available
ATO perspective: ‘only’ 2,184 SMSFs have assets over $10 million
Commissioners, Chris Jordan (ATO) and Greg Tanzer (ASIC), gave an update on compliance and regulatory issues for SMSFs at the SMSF Association National Conference in Adelaide today.
SMSF market update: the good and the bad
The market has had the worst start ever to a year and looks to be oversold on a short-term basis.
SMSF weekly market update
The past week has seen most global share markets continue to rally, as the Federal Reserve (Fed) followed the European Central Bank (ECB) into dovishness and the Bank of Japan undertook more monetary easing.
5 key themes for real assets in 2016
Global investor demand for real assets is expected to continue to strengthen in 2016.
8 reasons why the RBA won’t hold for long
The RBA may have left rates unchanged on Melbourne Cup Day but we expect to see a cut to 1.75% in the months ahead.
Bets are on for a Melbourne Cup Day rate cut and year-end rally
In this video, Shane Oliver, Chief Economist and Head of Investment Strategy provides an outlook for Australia’s cash rate and sharemarkets moving into year-end.
CIPRs are coming and that’s exciting
Comprehensive Income Products for Retirement, or CIPRs, are almost a reality and there is much excitement around what this means for superannuation and retirement outcomes.
Dynamic Markets Fund cracks the $1 billion mark
As the AMP Capital Dynamic Markets Fund reaches $1 billion in FUM, portfolio manager Nader Naeimi reflects on this innovation success story that began just five years ago.
Winner - Direct Property Fund Manager of the Year
AMP Capital has been named winner of the Zenith / Professional Planner Direct Property Fund Manager of the Year award for 2015.
4 themes to keep watching
In this article, we outline what SMSF investors need to watch in the months ahead.
Will cyber security threaten the sustainability of returns for investors?
The way companies understand and manage cyber threats will have a significant impact on their value.
ATO confirms SMSF global allocation “strongly understated”
With statistics around SMSF global allocation often misconstrued in the media, the ATO confirms the amount invested in international equities is indeed much higher than portrayed.
Does the Fed know something we don’t?
Fed not wanting to damage global economic recovery
SMSF weekly market update
It was another volatile week for global shares. In this note, we explore some key economic events, provide an outlook for markets and indicate what to watch in the coming week.
US rates to remain on hold - but for how long?
The Fed has decided to leave interest rates on hold. More importantly, the commentary around the decision was relatively dovish.
Economic outlook: the long and short of it
For SMSF investors it remains a time to be selective when investing. We assess how the global economy is tracking and share some short and long-term views on shares, bonds, property, infrastructure, commodities and currencies.
SMSF weekly market update
The turmoil in global share markets continued into the past week, but signs of stabilisation and improvement gradually started to appear resulting in several share markets actually rising over the last week.
Over $700m in WAPF: Australia’s largest direct property portfolio
AMP Capital announces the acquisition of Stud Park Shopping Centre in Victoria for $154 million.
Has the Fed missed the boat on raising rates this year?
Against a volatile global backdrop, the case for the US Federal Reserve to raise rates this year is less compelling.
Wholesale Australian Property Fund’s profitable acquisition
The Wholesale Australian Property Fund has acquired an industrial estate in Melbourne that is expected to deliver an income return of close to 8.0% this year.
Does your SMSF pass the independence test?
The mandating of independent directors for Australian super funds is facing resistance. While it’s difficult to define ‘independence’, global experts on board governance provide support for the government’s stance.
Is online wealth advice a reality?
Online wealth advice is not a ‘full-service’ offer like face-to-face advice, but it can provide tailored strategic asset allocation and investment guidance without the complexity or cost of the complete financial planning package.
China stocks in trading halt – what to consider?
Turbulent financial market dynamics in recent weeks have demonstrated the importance of diversifying widely and adopting an active approach to asset allocation.
4 new features make applications easy
This week, a new online application process was launched to mitigate the time and complexity that is currently associated with manual applications.
SMSF technology isn’t standing still
The advent of user-focused tools enabling SMSF members to direct their investments, receive information, make decisions and intuitively reach their own goals is moving ahead quickly.
New SMSF report: 3 investment trends to watch
New report uncovers key findings for SMSF investment
Is your portfolio geared for China’s growth potential?
The “One belt, one road” project concept initiated by China is attracting global investors’ attention.
China: The worst is now over
There have been some more positive signs for China recently.
Greece talks intensify
The situation in Europe is a lot stronger
Latest job figures may see RBA leave rates on hold
Australian jobs data for May was much better than expected.
What is robo-advice?
The term robo-advice is now widely used within wealth management circles, but exactly what does it mean?
SMSF update: What to watch over the next week
Shares had a good week helped by reasonable economic data, better than feared US earnings, some slightly better news on Greece and further monetary easing in China.
Price volatility matters for bond investing
Analysis of corporate credit comprises three key areas of assessment: volatility, financial ratios and structure. Everyone knows and uses financial ratios, or at least the rating agency shorthand of them which is summarised in labels such as ‘AAA’ or ‘BB’. The most common financial ratios are leverage, interest cover and gearing.
Opportunities in the ‘Internet of Things’
The tech boom renaissance which started in 2012 has seen the Nasdaq Composite Index move to new highs.
Australia delivers good company earnings
The eagerly anticipated Australian corporate earnings season for the first half of the 2014-2015 financial year unfolded during February. Coming into the season, market analysts were expecting earnings forecasts for industrial companies to be realised, with declines in resources sector earnings offset by better growth among industrial companies. Overall, more companies have reported earnings growth in line with estimates and a lower proportion have disappointed the market.
AMP Capital launches six mFunds
AMP Capital has given self-managed super fund (SMSF) trustees and other self-directed investors a new way to access six of its funds by making them available through the Australian Stock Exchange’s mFund Settlement Service.
Pension Loans Scheme should have much greater use
The little-known Pension Loans Scheme allows asset-rich but cash-poor retirees to top up their part-pension income to the full amount via a loan from the government, effectively unlocking the value of their assets.
Key changes for SMSFs and new ATO powers
It’s not just super contribution limits that have changed since 1 July. The ability to provide insurance policies through SMSFs has been redefined and the ATO can now utilitse new administrative penalty powers.
Changes to Centrelink treatment of account-based pensions
Get ready for more pension-related changes: from 1 January 2015 the way account-based income streams (including account-based pensions) are assessed under the income test for Centrelink purposes will be changing.
The prospects for investors in India
A change in India’s leadership has given hope to those tired of corruption, bureaucracy and slow economic growth. Despite many challenges, it is possible that India will become the top performing market in Asia.
Taking the heat out of home lending
APRA’s residential mortgage lending guidelines aim to reduce default rates, while making banks more secure and borrowers less stressed. Has APRA gone far enough and will banks risk losing business as a result?
China’s growth slowdown is underway
Recent developments in China’s credit and property markets could lead to a slowdown in the country’s economic growth. If this happens there would be significant implications for global investors.
Ten things for SMSF trustees to check before EOFY
As 30 June approaches there are many things SMSF trustees must consider to maintain a complying superannuation fund as well as take advantage of tax benefits. Here’s Monica’s top ten things for the ‘to do’ list.
Raising the pension age is no reason to panic
The recent and proposed changes to the pension system have caused quite a stir. Instead of fuelling the panic, it could be a great opportunity for you to reassess retirement plans, focus on your super and make the most of it.
Running up and paying off government debt
In the second part of the Labor v Liberal series, we look at Australia’s level of government debt since Federation. Our current debt level is low when compared to national income and the rest of the world.
Update on super changes, the levy and contribution caps
A quick explanation of what’s going on with recent changes around super and tax. Financial planners are already working on ways to minimise the impacts for their clients.
First Home Saver Account benefits abolished
The benefits in the First Home Saver Account were abolished in this week’s budget, removing an excellent first home savings vehicle, even for the 46,000 people who already have one.
Changes to how SMSF contributions are received
If your SMSF receives contributions from an unrelated employer, you need to prepare now for changes to the way contributions are received which come into effect on 1 July. Paper transactions will soon be a thing of the past.
Budget time and Labor v Liberal on fiscal discipline
When comparing the fiscal disciplines of left- and right-leaning parties, do the stereotypes prevail? This first part of a three-part series looks at which parties have produced more federal surpluses and deficits.
Barry et al, this is what a good gift policy looks like
ICAC has opened an important public debate on funding political parties and accepting gifts. As long as the compliance regime and corporate culture are strong, there’s not much scope for abuse in a good policy.
ATO video on SMSF Annual Obligations
Make sure you meet all your SMSF obligations before lodging your fund's annual return
Australia can learn from gold medal winner, Denmark
At a time when Australia is worrying about the loss of manufacturing jobs, Denmark’s gold-medal economic recovery since the GFC has some interesting policy implications for us.
Ten lessons from Warren Buffett’s 2013 shareholder letter
Warren Buffett is arguably the most successful investor of the 20th century and one of the more influential people in the world. Here are some of the highlights from the Oracle of Omaha’s 2013 newsletter.
ASX's managed fund service is threat to platforms but assists SMSFs
The ASX is almost ready to launch its managed fund service ‘mFunds’ which will enable investors to invest in and redeem managed funds directly. It may take a while to play out but there are many potential winners and losers.
Roy Morgan Research places SMSFs first for satisfaction
It’s not surprising that research shows high levels of satisfaction for self managed portfolios, as investors are effectively rating themselves. Regardless of the reason, few SMSFs will return to an institutional fund.

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