Finance

Estate planning workshop for WA seniors

If you have a will but you are still unsure about your care when you are no longer able to make your own decisions, then National Seniors can help.

An estate planning workshop in Perth next month will assist you to plan for the time others may have to choose on your behalf, if you’re unable, and dictate how your wealth is distributed on your death.

The three-hour workshop will go beyond wills and help towards mapping out a comprehensive estate plan aimed at engaging with your family.

Credit to Shorten for listening, but more required

By Chief Advocate Ian Henschke

A week’s a long time in politics and a fortnight’s even longer. 

Bill Shorten spoke to reporters on 14 March and announced his policy to save $59 billion dollars over 10 years. He said he’d do it by ending tax credits to share-owning retirees with no taxable income. He was ready for a “tough debate”. He got one. It created so much anger and concern among those affected he’s now “improved” his policy. 

Labor not budging on dividend imputation tax plan

Opposition Leader Bill Shorten is refusing to back down on the dividend imputation policy despite a widespread backlash against Labor’s plans to abolish franking credit cash rebates for retiree investors.

The Labor leader last week rejected calls to water down the proposed policy, or exempt pensioners or those with modest self-managed superannuation funds.

Mr Shorten said Labor was braced for “a tough debate” and it was unfair that “a few people” could claim a tax refund when they had paid no tax.

ALP dividend changes need more consideration

National Seniors Australia has warned proposed ALP changes that would end cash refunds to retirees claimed through share dividend imputation could backfire.

Chief Advocate Ian Henschke said this week that the plan, designed to claw back $59 billion over 10 years from wealthy retirees, could hurt many full and part age pensioners who had been encouraged to diversify by including shares in their retirement portfolios.

GFC recession stress sent blood pressure up

The Global Financial Crisis (GFC) of 10 years ago took a toll on the retirement incomes of many older Australians but in other countries, the economic downturn was a recession that has been blamed for a negative impact on people’s health.

A new study by Professor Teresa Seeman of the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) examined how the recession of 2007-2009 raised blood pressure and blood sugar.

Time out of workforce takes toll on women's super

Women will continue to retire with less super than men due to time out of the workforce and lost compound returns, a new study shows.

In a first of its kind, Industry Super Australia adviser and former Treasury retirement modelling head, Phil Gallagher, used data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) to plot both pay and superannuation gaps by age and salary.

Failure to switch providers costs millions

Laziness and fear of change are costing Australians around $10 million a year, a new survey shows.

Comparison website finder.com.au said 45 per cent of adults planned to switch at least one provider for services such as banking, energy, health insurance, telephone and pay TV, this year. However, 55 per cent – or more than 10 million people – would not change and their reluctance to act could cost them thousands of dollars.

Finder’s Bessie Hassan said Australians should review their monthly outgoings and consider switching to save money.

National plan to address elder abuse

National Seniors has welcomed Attorney-General Christian Porter’s announcement to develop a national plan by the end of 2018 to address the growing issue of financial, emotional and physical abuse of older people.

Mr Porter told the fifth National Elder Abuse Conference in Sydney this week the Commonwealth and state ­attorneys-general had agreed to work together in response to a report by the Australian Law Reform Commission (ALRC).

Seminar to help Sydney seniors plan their financial futures

Sydney residents can learn how to better fund their retirement at a National Seniors seminar at Parramatta on Tuesday, 27 March.

Co-presenter Basil La Brooy from National Seniors Financial Information Desk (FID) will be exploring ways to make the transition from work to retirement, take stock of resources, set financial goals and understand retirement income streams.

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