Archive - Raiz Invest

December 2018
Market and Economic Update - 17/12/2018
Market Update

Market update from George Lucas, CEO Raiz Invest.

 

Weak Chinese data for November

The week began on a positive note. In particular, US–China trade tensions eased with China allowing US Soya Beans in again and reducing the tariff on US cars to 15 percent even though Huawei’s CFO, Meng Wanzhou, was facing extradition to the US. But then China reported its activity and spending data, which confirmed a dismal November. Growth in investment, industrial value-added and retail sales all slowed last month, with the latter now at a 15-year low. This adds to the evidence that China’s economy is under significant pressure, not from the trade war, but primarily for domestic reasons. On top of that, Chinese lending data showed the People’s Bank of China’s preferred measure of credit growth at its lowest since 2005, indicating that the central bank’s efforts to turnaround the Chinese economy with looser monetary conditions are not working yet.  

Ugly Purchaser Management Index fans euro-zone growth fears

In Europe, there was also the release of weaker-than-expected data. The closely-watched flash Purchaser Management Index (PMI) slumped to 51.3, its weakest since November 2014 (but still signalling growth), and the market began to concern itself that global growth is now slowing. The gloomy PMI was largely driven by a sharp drop in France’s data, perhaps suggesting that the yellow vests protests had a serious economic effect. However, even if France’s index rebounds with the protests now over, the euro-zone economy has clearly shifted down a gear and looks set for more moderate growth next year. [caption id="attachment_3977" align="aligncenter" width="640"]Yellow Vest Protest in France Gloomy PMI suggests yellow vest protest had a serious economic impact.[/caption]  

Blowout month for US retail sales

Across in the US, where all the uncertainty began, the news was more upbeat on the economy. The highlight was a 0.9 per cent surge in underlying retail sales for November, suggesting that real consumption growth has remained strong in Q4. There was also a solid gain in monthly industrial production, which rose 0.6 per cent due to better utilities and mining output. However, manufacturing output was flat in November. Meanwhile, Johnson and Johnson shares plunged more than 10 per cent after
reports the company knew for years that its baby powder contained asbestos, including in Australia. The US pharmaceutical and cosmetics giant strenuously rejected the claims.   Read our previous blog, 6 Ways to Save More For Christmas   

Don’t have the Raiz App?

Download it for free in the App store or the Webapp below:
[caption id="attachment_3372" align="aligncenter" width="351"]download-raiz-app Click to download the Raiz app[/caption]
  Important Note: The information on this website is provided for the use of licensed financial advisers only. The information is general advice and does not take into account any person's particular investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this website. Investors only: The information in this Document is confidential it must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person unless it is part of their statement of advice. The information may be based on assumptions or market conditions and may change without notice. This may impact the accuracy of the information. In no circumstances is the information in this Document to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of making a decision about a financial product or class of products. General advice warning: The information contained in this Document is general information only. It has been prepared without taking account any potential investors’ financial situation, objectives or needs and the appropriateness of this information needs to be considered in that context. No responsibility or liability is accepted by Instreet or any third party who has contributed to this Document for any of the information contained herein or for any action taken by you or any of your officers, employees, agents or associates.
How Does Raiz Work?
Raiz is a micro-investing app that works by allowing you to start investing with as little as $5. Users can invest into their Raiz account through round ups, recurring investments, and lump sum deposits. Money in your Raiz Investment Account is invested into a mix of exchange traded funds (ETFs) in accordance with one of six different Portfolios selected by you. Raiz provides Australians access to start early, invest often and reach their financial goals.   [embed]https://d2mhoisd9uf1g8.cloudfront.net/HowItWorks_rainz_music_FINAL.mp4[/embed]  

With Raiz, saving and investing is easier than ever before.  Here's how Raiz works.

First, connect a bank account to your Raiz account. This is where all deposits and withdrawals to and from your Raiz account will come and go. Next, you'll need to choose a Raiz investment portfolio. The portfolio's are 'Conservative', 'Moderately Conservative', 'Moderate', 'Moderately Aggressive', 'Aggressive' and 'Emerald'. The offering of portfolio's are designed to suit the differing investment goals of investors, in terms of acceptable level of risk and planned time in the market (see our PDS for more info). For example, an aggressive portfolio may suit you if you want higher returns in the longer term, but will accept a high risk of losing capital over the medium term. [caption id="attachment_3816" align="aligncenter" width="900"]Raiz Investment Portfolio's An example of a Moderately Aggressive Portfolio[/caption] Then, set up your spending accounts in Roundups. Raiz can track credit cards, debit cards and other bank accounts and will round up every purchase to the nearest dollar and keep track of this amount. When your round-ups hit your round-up threshold, we'll withdraw it from your bank account and invest it for you. Your new shares will then appear in your Raiz account and you can watch it grow over time. [caption id="attachment_3965" align="aligncenter" width="300"]Raiz round ups on phone Round ups can help you save in the background of life[/caption] You can also set up a Recurring Investments plan or Savings Goal which you can name to help your account grow even faster. If you have spare cash you can always invest into your Raiz Account at anytime using Lump Sum investment. Feel confident in saving more and investing with Raiz.

 

Don’t have the Raiz App?

Download it for free in the App store or the Webapp below:
[caption id="attachment_3372" align="aligncenter" width="351"]download-raiz-app Click to download the Raiz app[/caption]
 

Important Information

The information on this website is general advice only. This means it does not consider any person’s investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this article to fully understand the benefits and risk associated with the Raiz product. The information in this website is confidential. It must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person. The information is based on assumptions or market conditions which change without notice. This will impact the accuracy of the information. Under no circumstances is the information to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of deciding about investing in Raiz. Past return performance of the Raiz product should not be relied on for deciding to invest in Raiz and is not a good predictor of future performance.
6 Ways to Save More For Christmas
Don't have the Raiz App? Download here   With the festive season beginning, you might be stressing more about the potential hit your bank account is going to take, rather than looking forward to celebrating and spending time with friends and family. Don’t worry, because here are 6 tips that can help you save more for Christmas and secure confidence in your personal finance 🎁 💳

1. Create a budget

One of the easiest and most effective strategies to manage your spending over Christmas is to create a budget beforehand. Pre-planning a budget, and following it, will prevent you from spending more on presents, food and drinks than you can afford. It is a common trap that many of us fall into when we forget to track how much we are spending, only to then realise all those costs stacked up more than anticipated. The ‘My Finance’ tool in the Raiz app can be helpful in planning a budget. You could take your average monthly spending, and then decide how much more you can afford to spend in a month on top of that for your holiday shopping. Or, you could see how much you can cut back on other non-essential purchases to keep your spending similar for December.

2. Stick to a list

By making and sticking to a list, you avoid buying more presents than you really need to (how many socks does Dave really need?). This list would tie into a budget, making sure that you spend the correct amount of money on the correct number of presents. Keeping a list of what you have gotten for whom and what you still need to buy eliminates mistakes of overbuying, and any awkward social situations where you forget someone’s present. Receiving a present from someone, and then remembering you’ve forgotten to get them something in return is a cringe worthy moment no one wants to experience. [caption id="attachment_3946" align="aligncenter" width="640"]Christmas List Stick to a list over Christmas[/caption]

3. Take Advantage of Raiz Rewards

Take advantage of over 150 online retailers through Raiz Rewards. Why not get a gift back from our partners from your gifting shopping? Shop through Raiz Rewards and get a cash reward invested back into your Raiz account. This is on top of any sales and deals leading up to Christmas, so browsing these sites to find the best price, and using available discount codes, can save you a decent sum of money. Please also check the T&Cs within the app. Most sites will offer free shipping once you meet a certain expenditure threshold, e.g. free shipping for purchases over $70. So, if you can coordinate your shopping to meet this threshold, you’ll save a nice little sum of money, rather than paying shipping for every individual present. Say, for example, shipping is $10, and you purchase 5 gifts from the same site, but separately, that’s $50 you could have saved by buying at the same time and meeting the free shipping threshold. Staying on the topic of shipping, getting organised with your shopping is also important. If you order something say, 3 days before Christmas, you run that risk that it won’t arrive in time for Christmas eve/day. Alternatively, you might have to cough up a few extra dollars for express shipping. [caption id="attachment_3948" align="aligncenter" width="400"]Raiz Rewards Raiz Rewards as it looks on the app[/caption]

4. Jump on post-Christmas Day sales

The day after Christmas, retailers no longer want to stock Christmas decorations and wrapping paper, since there is no longer a demand for them (more often these days the sales are starting earlier each year). Therefore, the prices get significantly reduced in order to offload stock. This is a great opportunity for you to stock up these items for next year’s Christmas and save a bunch of money the following Christmas. If you’re super prepared you could even buy presents for next year with all the Boxing Day sales around.

5. Share the cost of Christmas meals

If you’re hosting a Christmas lunch, dinner etc. this year, instead of buying and preparing all the food, ask friends and family to help contribute. For example, you could cook the main Christmas staples, and ask others to bring the salads, desserts etc. This is a simple strategy that can save not only money, but also the time and stress that comes with the burden of preparing a Christmas meal by yourself. [caption id="attachment_3945" align="aligncenter" width="640"]Christmas meal Share the costs of Christmas meals[/caption]

6. Organise a Secret Santa

Organising a Secret Santa can be a great way to cut down on the cost of presents, whilst also getting everyone involved. The benefits of a Secret Santa are two-fold. Firstly, setting a budget for the presents removes the ambiguity of how much you should spend. The obvious second benefit is everyone only having to buy one present. One of the best elements of Secret Santa’s is that you can adjust the budget and tone of the gifts to suit different groups. A less formal group of friends, for example, might assign a $10 budget and buy each other trivial presents, whereas a family could establish a larger budget with more sincere gifts.    

Don’t have the Raiz App?

Download it for free in the App store or the Webapp below:
[caption id="attachment_3372" align="aligncenter" width="351"]download-raiz-app Click to download the Raiz app[/caption]
  Important Information The information on this website is general advice only. This means it does not consider any person’s investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this article to fully understand the benefits and risk associated with the Raiz product. The information in this website is confidential. It must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person. The information is based on assumptions or market conditions which change without notice. This will impact the accuracy of the information. Under no circumstances is the information to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of deciding about investing in Raiz. Past return performance of the Raiz product should not be relied on for deciding to invest in Raiz and is not a good predictor of future performance.  
What Is a Custodian and What Do They Mean for Raiz Users?
Locks on chain Don't have the Raiz App? Download here   You just deposited $10 into your Raiz account, the funds leave your bank to be used to buy Exchange Traded Fund (ETF) units, and your Raiz balance increases. But where, exactly, are these ETF units held for you? They are not held by Raiz, but are held by an independent Custodian. When you deposit funds into your Raiz account, there are a number of actions that happen before you see your balance increase. This diagram, taken from our PDS, provides an overview of what happens when you invest into your account. [caption id="attachment_3903" align="aligncenter" width="812"]Structure of the Raiz Fund showing the role of the custodian Structure of the Raiz Fund[/caption] As you can see, Raiz doesn’t hold any ETF units. When we buy ETF’s on behalf of investors, the actual ETF units are then held by an independent Custodian (Australian Executor Trustees Limited).

What is a Custodian?

Put simply, a Custodian’s job is to hold assets (in this case ETF units) on behalf of the investors in the registered managed investment scheme (Raiz). They could be thought of as a bank for Raiz, whose only role is to hold and safeguard the assets of the fund. The chosen Custodian, Australian Executor Trustees Limited (AET), is one of Australia’s largest and oldest licensed trustee companies. AET has been operating for over 130 years, having been providing Custodian and Trustee services since 1880.

What benefits does a Custodian provide to Raiz users?

  • The primary benefit of our fund’s assets being held by a custodian is the assurance an independent custodian provides Raiz users. Hypothetically, if Raiz was to suddenly go out of business, the assets are still held by the Custodian and the dollar value of every user’s account would be returned to them. The ETF units, held by AET, would be sold on market by the Custodian so that their value in AUD would then be deposited back into users’ bank accounts.
  • Another benefit is the checks and balances a Custodian provides to Raiz users. They have a compliance function to ensure everything matches up.
If you’d like to read more in-depth about our Fund structure and Custodian, have a look through our PDS 

Don’t have the Raiz App?

Download it for free in the App store or the Webapp below:
[caption id="attachment_3372" align="aligncenter" width="351"]download-raiz-app Click to download the Raiz app[/caption]
  Important Information The information on this website is general advice only. This means it does not consider any person’s investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this article to fully understand the benefits and risk associated with the Raiz product. The information in this website is confidential. It must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person. The information is based on assumptions or market conditions which change without notice. This will impact the accuracy of the information. Under no circumstances is the information to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of deciding about investing in Raiz. Past return performance of the Raiz product should not be relied on for deciding to invest in Raiz and is not a good predictor of future performance.
Terms & Conditions for completing our ‘Improving our Services’ online survey
  1. An active Raiz Account must be held (account balance greater than $5). Raiz account holders hold valid accounts as set out in the product disclosure statement found on the website: raizinvest.com.au.
 
  1. Entries open Sunday, 9th December 2018 at 11am and entries close Sunday, 23rdDecember 2018 at 5 To enter one must complete in full the ‘Improving our Services’ within the timeframe stated above and provide the email address on your active Raiz Investment account within the survey. Note there could be circumstances where the survey period is shortened, extended or otherwise modified at the discretion of the company.
 
  1. To thank you for completing the Survey, Raiz Invest will be giving away five $50.00 credit investments in to their active Raiz Investment Account. These five investments will be selected at random. We note that no individual prize exceeds $250.00 and total value of prizes do not exceed $50,000.00.
 
  1. These five random Raiz Account holders will be notified by email when the credit investments will be deposited into their Raiz account by Monday 14th January 2019 subject to any circumstances where the survey period is shortened, extended or otherwise modified at the discretion of the company.
 
  1. The permit number in the format NSW Permit No. LTPM/18/03853.
 
  1. This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with any other third party.
 
  1. By entering this promotion, you agree that we may use entries / results / feedback for future marketing purposes in any media or branding.
 
  1. The competition is promoted by Raiz Invest Australia Limited, Level 11/2 Bulletin Place Sydney 2000 NSW, 1300 754 748. ABN 26 604 402 815, who is the Authorised Representative of AFSL 434776. The Raiz product is issued in Australia by Instreet Investment Limited (ACN 128 813 016 AFSL 434776) and promoted by Raiz Invest Australia Limited (ACN 604 402 815). A Product Disclosure Statement dated 10th April 2018 for this product is available on the Raiz website and App. A person should read and consider the Product Disclosure Statement in deciding whether or not to acquire and continue to hold interests in the product. The risks of investing in this product are fully set out in the Product Disclosure Statement and include the risks that would ordinarily apply to investing. Amounts are in Australian dollars.
  NSW Permit No. LTPM/18/03853
Market and Economic Update - 03/12/2018

G20 summit

Market Update from George Lucas, CEO of Raiz Invest

Positive Trump-Xi meeting at G20 Summit

This week will start with analysis of the G20 Summit in Argentina and then the market should go back to focusing on US treasury yields and the possibility of a slowdown in the US. The G20 summit saw trade at the top of the agenda, with hopes for talks between Chinese President Xi Jinping and US President Donald Trump and that the two leaders would strike a deal easing US-China tensions after the recent APEC meeting confirmed deep divisions. In a positive outcome, Xi and Trump agreed to temporarily
halt imposing new tariffs and work on a more permanent deal at a dinner on Saturday after the Buenos Aires summit. Without a deal, Trump could have pushed ahead with levying tariffs on an extra $250bn or so of Chinese imports. [caption id="attachment_3862" align="aligncenter" width="500"]Business deal shake The US and China Agreed to a Temporary Trade Deal[/caption]

China stocks rally

Despite the talk of US protectionism before the G20, equities in China, which have been a big victim of trade war fears, have recovered recently and done better than those in the US. The underperformance of Chinese equities earlier in 2018 started around the same time Trump approved tariffs on $50bn of Chinese imports, and threatened more to come.  Worries about China’s economy, which also emerged around that time, didn’t help either. But since early October China’s stock market has performed noticeably better than its US counterpart, in line with some stabilisation in the renminbi relative to the greenback. That partly reflects the S&P 500 starting to come under pressure as investors fret about the outlook for the US economy and improved sentiment surrounding US-China trade tensions.

[caption id="attachment_3878" align="aligncenter" width="550"]Shanhai Shanghai is a key component of the Chinese Economy[/caption]

Spotlight on Fed Chair Jerome Powell

Turning to the US, markets will be watching US Federal Reserve (Fed) Chairman Jerome Powell’s address to the Joint Economic Committee of Congress on the US economy. Powell’s testimony this week is likely to see him hint that the Fed intends to continue hiking interest rates next year. I don’t think he can say anything else as the November employment report will likely be strong and cement expectations for a December rate hike. However, slumping oil prices and fears about the US economic outlook have caused investors to dial down expectations for tighter US monetary policy for the first time in ages. Investors are now discounting roughly two rate hikes between now and the end of 2019, rather than the three that they were anticipating a few weeks ago. [caption id="attachment_3872" align="aligncenter" width="500"]Jerome Powell Jerome Powell Will Address the Joint Economic Committee of Congress this Week[/caption]

2-year US Treasury yields dip

Still in the US, the 2-year US Treasury yield has fallen significantly since November 8. This has also been driven by the recent fall in oil prices pushing down inflation expectations and worries about the US economic outlook connected to future Fed tightening. Oil’s more than 30 per cent decline since touching a four-year high in early October has left energy stocks the worst performer on Wall Street this quarter. However, a question remains about how much of the tumble in oil is due to a sudden market oversupply, or if it’s down to fears of a broader economic slowdown next year.  

OPEC meeting could reverse oil-price plunge

The answer will likely come at this week’s OPEC meeting, with a supply cut on the agenda. There’s confidence that a deal to restrict supply will be reached after Russia signalled it would continue to cooperate with the cartel and may agree to some form of production cut. But if oil prices continue to fall and were to reach $45 a barrel, then that becomes a clearer signal that it’s not just an oversupply challenge, but that slowing global growth is a factor. [caption id="attachment_3867" align="aligncenter" width="600"]Oil Rig at sea Oil price plunge could be reversed[/caption]   Read our previous blog - 'Why Time in the Markets Matter' --------------------- Important Note: The information on this website is provided as general advice and does not take into account any person's particular investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this website. Investors only: The information on this website is confidential and it must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person unless it is part of their statement of advice. The information may be based on assumptions or market conditions and may change without notice. This may impact the accuracy of the information. In no circumstances is the information on this website to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of making a decision about a financial product or class of products. General advice warning: The information contained on this website is general information only. It has been prepared without taking account any potential investors’ financial situation, objectives or needs and the appropriateness of this information needs to be considered in that context. No responsibility or liability is accepted by Raiz Invest or any third party who has contributed to this content for any of the information contained here in or for any action taken by you or any of your officers, employees, agents or associates.
November 2018
Why Time in the Market Matters
Time in the Market Don't have the Raiz App? Download here You may or may not have heard the saying, “It’s not about the timing market, it’s about time in the market.” But what does this mean exactly? Some new investors may tend to place a short-term focus on how their investments are performing. They’ll frequently track how their shares are going, get excited when their position rises, and then, if it falls, they’ll become carried away with emotion and saddened by a change in market conditions and short-term loss of assets. But what about the long-term picture? Over time stocks tend to naturally go through periods of growth and decline – this is completely normal. Therefore, selling off stocks after a brief period of decline rather than focusing on the long-term goal can be a strategy that doesn’t add value, given it is likely that shares will rise later down the track. Just as hard as it is to predict the downturns, it is also hard to predict when stocks will turn around and rally.  This is known as timing the market – picking the tops and bottoms. To avoid having to time the market to invest, a more long-term strategy is to utilise the advantages of time in the market – that is, the longer you are in the market, the more likely you are to see a healthier return. The first step is to choose the right portfolio for you. If you are likely to withdraw your money when the market declines, you should probably be in Moderate to Conservative portfolio options. This way, a stock market decline should have less emotional impact on you. Therefore, you are likely to remain disciplined when markets decline by not withdrawing your money due to the fear of more losses and sticking with your strategy. If your savings goal is short-term (less than three years) a Conservative option is also probably best. The Aggressive and Emerald portfolio options are for those with long-term saving goals and the ability to remain disciplined during market down turns and the associated losses on their portfolios. Choosing the right portfolio is an important step in avoiding the emotional traps of euphoria and depression that can cause you to make rash decisions [caption id="attachment_3816" align="aligncenter" width="900"]Raiz Investment Portfolio's An example of the projected value for a Moderately Aggressive Portfolio after 11 years.[/caption] The second step is to have a disciplined saving/investing strategy or philosophy. At Raiz, our philosophy is to invest small amounts regularly, thus helping to manage market uncertainty. This is a well-known investment strategy, known as dollar cost averaging. [caption id="attachment_3826" align="aligncenter" width="500"]Dollar Cost Averaging Definition See our blog on “The Advantages of Dollar Cost Averaging”.[/caption] Raiz automates this strategy and does it more frequently, with the average Raiz customer investing at least once a week. The result can be a healthier balance over the long-term through the automation provided by Raiz. By automating the process, your investing strategy can also be protected against those short-term emotions. Another benefit of spending more time in the market is from compounding. This is when an asset’s earnings are reinvested to generate additional earnings over time. Reinvesting dividends into shares can increase returns due to the power of compounding.  So, the longer you spend in the market, the more dividends you are likely to receive, which are reinvested into more and more shares over time. It is not easy when it is your money.  We all experience the emotional high and lows that come with investing, however by maintaining a disciplined, automated approach, and selecting the right portfolio, you can avoid short term stress and take advantage of dollar cost averaging and compound returns over time.    

Don’t have the Raiz App?

Download it for free in the App store or the Webapp below:
[caption id="attachment_3372" align="aligncenter" width="351"]download-raiz-app Click to download the Raiz app[/caption]
Important Information  The information on this website is general advice only. This means it does not consider any person’s investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this article to fully understand the benefits and risk associated with the Raiz product.  The information in this website is confidential. It must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person. The information is based on assumptions or market conditions which change without notice. This will impact the accuracy of the information.  Under no circumstances is the information to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of deciding about investing in Raiz.  Past return performance of the Raiz product should not be relied on for deciding to invest in Raiz and is not a good predictor of future performance.  The Raiz Invest Fund is issued in Australia by Instreet Investment Limited (ACN 128 813 016 AFSL 434776) a subsidiary of Raiz. A Product Disclosure Statement for this product is available on the Raiz Invest website and App. A person should read and consider the Product Disclosure Statement in deciding whether, or not, to acquire and continue to hold interests in the product. The risks of investing in this product are fully set out in the Product Disclosure Statement and include the risks that would ordinarily apply to investing.
Terms & Conditions For Entering Our My Finance Facebook Competition
  1. An active Raiz Invest Account must be held (account balance greater than $5). Raiz account holders hold valid accounts as set out in the product disclosure statements found on the website: raizinvest.com.au.
  2. Entries open Monday 19th November 2018 at 4PM and entries close Sunday November 25th 2018 at 5PM. To enter, one must comment on the Facebook post within the time frame stated above.
  3. Raiz Invest will select five winners with a $100.00 credit investment in to their active Raiz Investment Account. These five investments will be selected at Raiz’s discretion. We note that no individual prize exceeds $250 and total value of prizes do not exceed $50,000.
  4. These five Raiz Account holders will be requested to message us their email and will be notified by email when the credit investment is deposited into their Raiz Investment account by Friday 30th November 2018.
  5. The permit number in the format NSW Permit No. LTPM/18/03853.
  6. This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with any other third party.
  7. By entering this promotion, you agree that we may use entries for future marketing purposes in any media or branding.
  8. The competition is promoted by Raiz Invest Australia Limited, Level 11/2 Bulletin Place Sydney 2000 NSW, 1300 754 748. ABN 26 604 402 815, who is the Authorised Representative of AFSL 434776. The Raiz product is issued in Australia by Instreet Investment Limited (ACN 128 813 016 AFSL 434776) and promoted by Raiz Invest Australia Limited (ACN 604 402 815). A Product Disclosure Statement dated 10th April 2018 for this product is available on the Raiz website and App. A person should read and consider the Product Disclosure Statement in deciding whether or not to acquire and continue to hold interests in the product. The risks of investing in this product are fully set out in the Product Disclosure Statement and include the risks that would ordinarily apply to investing.
NSW Permit No. LTPM/18/03853
Market Update - Is It Over?
by Raiz Invest CEO, George Lucas So, is the market volatility over? Unfortunately, when you invest into markets, it is never over.  The reason we invest is to give us the potential to earn more than can be earned from a bank account. With that in mind, here’s my best guess for the reason behind the recent downturn in the markets. It wasn’t about fears around global growth, it was about an expectation that company earnings, especially in the US, won’t be able to grow as fast in the future as they have over the last couple of years. Many in the market decided to take profit because of this earnings uncertainty, especially when it came to US technology companies. The latest US employment report, released last Friday night, didn’t help. It showed a strong US labour market, adding a better-than-expected 250,000 jobs in October, which means that company earnings may slow as wage-costs rise. In order to earn the potentially higher returns from investing we need to put in place strategies to manage the market uncertainty. Firstly, when it comes to portfolio selection, clients should consider their age and goals in deciding what portfolio selection is right for them.  Being in one of the aggressive portfolio options can work well when markets are rising.  However, when they fall, they will also lose more.  If the fall in the dollar amount causes you to withdraw your money or to time your market exit and then entry, then maybe you should explore a less aggressive option. Market timing usually doesn’t lead to higher returns, as funds may be withdrawn near the bottom of the market and added back near the highs.  There is a saying “It’s the time in the market, not the market timing” 😊. This is why our philosophy is about investing/saving small amounts regularly.  We minimise the effect of market timing and it can assist in managing market uncertainty. In my opinion no matter what your age, if you are saving for a short-term goal, then you should be in one of our conservative options.  Market uncertainty is then less likely to have the same affect on the value of your portfolio and you are more likely to reach you goal in the time frame you have set for yourself. If you are saving for the longer term, say greater than 3 years and you are young, then being in an aggressive option may suit you.  This is because markets do tend to go up in the long term (you need to include dividends). So even though in the short term you may have set backs in your portfolio value, in the long term you should earn more than you can earn in a bank account. In the end, it is your choice. We cannot recommend a portfolio choice.  Raiz is not a get rich quick scheme, it is about developing a habit of regular saving and investing to meet a long or short-term goal. Remember, the current drop in the markets has nothing to do with the health of current US corporate earnings or the current state of the global economy and global growth – it is all about future expectations.  Markets are currently digesting the recent information and trying to land on a consensus of what earning growth will be for 2019. Indeed, by many measures this quarter has been a record earnings season for US companies, while the US economy posted an impressive annualised growth rate of 3.5 per cent (annualised) for the third quarter. US stocks weren’t alone in having a horror October. The MSCI’s World Index of stocks in 23 Developed Market countries fell by more than five per cent in local currency terms over the month. So, is the market volatility over? My answer is probably not as it will take time and some more ups and downs for the market and investors to come to a consensus, if, and by how much, earnings for corporations could slow. In saying that, it is possible that November and December will see rallies. Although, February 2019 could turn into another sell-off until March 2019 when the forward-looking market has got its head around earnings growth for 2019 and begin focusing on earnings for 2020. What level we end up at, and how much down, if at all, I don’t know. I do hope I am wrong, and markets resume their steady rally, but that is not my best guess. So, choose your portfolio wisely -- based on your goals and expectations of what you want Raiz to deliver.  Also, the Raiz philosophy of investing small amounts regularly can assist with managing market uncertainty as market timing is difficult.   Important Information The information on this website is general advice only. This means it does not consider any person’s investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this article to fully understand the benefits and risk associated with the Raiz product. The information in this website is confidential. It must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person. The information is based on assumptions or market conditions which change without notice. This will impact the accuracy of the information. Under no circumstances is the information to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of deciding about investing in Raiz. Past return performance of the Raiz product should not be relied on for deciding to invest in Raiz and is not a good predictor of future performance. The Raiz Invest Fund is issued in Australia by Instreet Investment Limited (ACN 128 813 016 AFSL 434776) a subsidiary of Raiz. A Product Disclosure Statement for this product is available on the Raiz Invest website and App. A person should read and consider the Product Disclosure Statement in deciding whether, or not, to acquire and continue to hold interests in the product. The risks of investing in this product are fully set out in the Product Disclosure Statement and include the risks that would ordinarily apply to investing.    
Terms & Conditions For Entering Our Raiz Rewards Facebook Competition
  1. An active Raiz Invest Account must be held (account balance greater than $5). Raiz account holders hold valid accounts as set out in the product disclosure statements found on the website: raizinvest.com.au.
  2. Entries open Monday 5th November 2018 at 4PM and entries close Sunday November 11thNovember 2018 at 5PM. To enter, one must comment on the Facebook post within the time frame stated above.
  3. Raiz Invest will select five winners with a $100.00 credit investment in to their active Raiz Investment Account. These five investments will be selected at Raiz’s discretion.
  4. These five Raiz Account holders will be requested to message us their email and will be notified by email when the credit investment is deposited into their Raiz Investment account by Friday 23rd November 2018.
  5. The permit number in the format “NSW Permit No. LTPM/17/02522.”
  6. This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with any other third party.
  7. By entering this promotion, you agree that we may use entries for future marketing purposes in any media or branding.
  8. The competition is promoted by Raiz Invest Australia Limited, Level 11/2 Bulletin Place Sydney 2000 NSW, 1300 754 748. ABN 26 604 402 815, who is the Authorised Representative of AFSL 434776. The Raiz product is issued in Australia by Instreet Investment Limited (ACN 128 813 016 AFSL 434776) and promoted by Raiz Invest Australia Limited (ACN 604 402 815). A Product Disclosure Statement dated 10th April 2018 for this product is available on the Raiz website and App. A person should read and consider the Product Disclosure Statement in deciding whether or not to acquire and continue to hold interests in the product. The risks of investing in this product are fully set out in the Product Disclosure Statement and include the risks that would ordinarily apply to investing.
NSW Permit No. LTPM/17/02522
October 2018
Why Superannuation is important (for you and the economy)

by Lachlan Fuggle

Why is superannuation important? What makes the guaranteed contribution scheme justifiable? And how much should you personally contribute to your super fund? With Australia’s pension fund (superannuation) ranked 4th in the world in 2018 by the Melbourne Mercer Global Pension Index, and super assets totaling $2.7 trillion at the end of the June 2018 quarter, it’s worth taking a look at what super means for Australian citizens and its economy. Australia’s modern superannuation system began in 1991, with a compulsory scheme that requires employers to pay a set portion of their employee’s salaries into a super fund, known as guarantee contributions. Currently, the super guarantee rate is 9.5% of your income, and is planned to be incrementally increased after 2021 to 12% by 2025. On top of these compulsory contributions, you can also choose to make personal contributions out of your own pocket to further grow your super.   When I can access my Super? To access your super’s funds, you need to reach your ‘preservation age’, which is currently between 55 and 60 depending on when you were born. As long as you’re permanently retired you can access your super once you reach this.   Benefits of Super? The obvious reason for super’s existence is to help people save money for retirement. Therefore, the main benefit of guaranteed contributions is that it forces you to set aside money for eventual retirement, so you have an adequate income stream post retirement to be comfortable and maintain a certain standard of living. This can be especially helpful for anyone that may struggle to save money for long term goals since it can be hard to think about putting aside money that may not help you for another 30 or so years. See our blog
‘Why you don’t care about Future you’   The drawback of mandatory super payments is of course, in the short-term you feel a loss of disposable income, and with the savings being out of reach until your preservation age, you may have to save an additional pool of money to afford short to medium term purchases such as a new car or holiday (see our blog ‘5 Ways to Save More with Raiz’). Given this, it’s still hard to argue against investing in Super. A lack of retirement funds would mean more reliance on the government’s Age Pension scheme, which in turn places more pressure on the government (and therefore tax payer dollars).   How Super affects the Australian Economy? Hypothetically, if people began to not contribute much/any money to their super throughout their lives, an increased reliance on the Age Pension would strain government resources, causing either allowance per person to decrease, or forcing the government to increase funding. This funding would have to be sourced still within government funding in other areas, and/or increased tax rates. The effects of this would be detrimental to not only Australia’s aging population as there will be more people in retirement, but to the whole Australian economy. While Australia ranks number 54th in the world by population, ranking 4th by pension fund assets shows the great lengths in us as a country in ensuring enough wealth for Australians in the future.   Should you personally contribute to your super fund? Another way of growing your super balance is through voluntary contributions. The main advantage of this is that any contributions may be tax deductible*, reducing your personal income tax. For more detail, see our blog ‘New rules for Super Contribution’. These savings could also potentially accrue more returns than a standard bank savings account in the long term. When judged over the last 10 years, the top 30 super funds averaged a return of 6.4%. The top 30 performing funds over the last 12 months averaged returns of 9.2%. A return of 9.2%, compounded annually over 10 years, would see a $100 balance more than double to $241, without any further deposits.   How to easily manager your Super? Raiz Super offers its users an easy to use interface that allows you to easily view your balance and all contributions (guarantee & personal), all on your mobile phone. Being entirely accessible digitally through the Raiz app and website means users can regularly check their Super balance, observe how the market has affected their overall amount, and easily contribute additional funds. So, given the importance of Super, do you feel connected enough to your future?    

Don’t have the Raiz App?

Download it for free in the App store or the Webapp below:
[caption id="attachment_3372" align="aligncenter" width="351"]download-raiz-app Click to download the Raiz app[/caption]
   Important Information  The information on this website is general advice only.  This means it does not take into account any person’s particular investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this article to fully understand the benefits and risk associated with the Raiz product.  The information in this website is confidential. It must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person. The information is based on assumptions or market conditions which change without notice. This will impact the accuracy of the information. Under no circumstances is the information to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of deciding about investing in Raiz.   Past return performance of the Raiz product should not be relied on for making a decision to invest in Raiz and is not a good predictor of future performance.  * For the new rules, there are certain eligibility criteria, which are not trivial, so you do need to check with a licensed tax adviser (or other) before deciding to make voluntary contributions and claim a deduction.
Helping millennials get the saving bug
Don't have the Raiz App? Download here   Australia is in the big league. According to the Bank of International Settlements (BIS) and the International Monetary Fund (IMF), we have the second highest household debt to GDP ratio out of 43 countries, with Switzerland getting the chocolates. But while household debt has been rising, we should not think this is a new phenomenon – Australians have typically not been savers. We’re not alone in this. Indeed, if a study by researchers at Cornell University is on the money, it’s an American trait, too. This piece of research contends that Americans are far more attuned to seeing opportunities to making money than saving it. It seems our “grey matter” is very creative when it comes to making a buck, but not nearly so good at seizing opportunities to save a dollar. What the study did was measure our attention to earning or saving money. According to a Wall Street Journal article, participants had to identify colours shown quickly on a computer: one “earning” colour that let them gain 30 cents, a neutral colour that had no monetary effect and one “saving” colour that let them avoid losing 30 cents. When the “earning” colour was shown, a staggering 87.5% of participants identified it more quickly and accurately than when the “saving” colour was shown. Even in trials that framed “saving” as earnings that would come slightly later, participants were still better at immediate earning. In the study’s second part, participants had to identify which colour appeared first. Three out of four said they saw the “earning” colour appear first—when in fact, the “saving” colour did. This suggests our “earning” bias may even be strong enough to warp our perception of time. “It’s such a powerful bias that it literally distorts the lens with which you see things. It’s not like people don’t care about savings,” says Adam Anderson, an associate professor and co-director of Cornell’s Affect and Cognition Lab, who co-wrote the study and is quoted by the Wall Street Journal. “We’re kind of blind when those opportunities are presented.” Australians, I would argue, are like Americans. We are good at earning money, but not so good when it comes to saving it. Perhaps a key reason is the fact we spend much of our lives making our “hard earned money”, and so little our lives considering, or working on how we can hold on to it and save it. We need to spend more time training ourselves to save money. At Raiz Invest, we would like to think we are playing a small – but significant – role in changing this thinking about savings. Our App, which now has more than 175,000 active users, many of whom fall into the millennial demographic, is an easy and price-competitive way to automatically save and invest. In the process we are teaching Australians, especially young Australians, about saving, making it a daily part of life, just like working to earn it. In the end we are hopefully empowering them to have a far greater sense of control over their financial affairs, of which saving is such a big part. It won’t happen overnight. But it does need to happen, and with governments and regulators still only paying lip service to financial literacy education in the schools, we hope the Raiz Invest App will be part of the solution to help Australian earn more, while saving.    

Don’t have the Raiz App?

Download it for free in the App store or the Webapp below:
[caption id="attachment_3372" align="aligncenter" width="351"]download-raiz-app Click to download the Raiz app[/caption]
  Important Information The information on this website is general advice only. This means it does not consider any person’s investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this article to fully understand the benefits and risk associated with the Raiz product. The information in this website is confidential. It must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person. The information is based on assumptions or market conditions which change without notice. This will impact the accuracy of the information. Under no circumstances is the information to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of deciding about investing in Raiz. Past return performance of the Raiz product should not be relied on for deciding to invest in Raiz and is not a good predictor of future performance.
My Finance - How to save more by understanding your spending
What is My Finance? Need an easier way to understand your finances? My Finance is a free to use feature within the Raiz app. It provides you personalised insights and notifications on how you are spending. Spending is the other side of the equation when it comes to saving so by spending less, you can potentially save more…. Keeing a handle on how spending can help you meet your savings goals 🙂 In addition, we have harnessed machine learning & artificial intelligence into the feature so that it will provide you with tips & insights relevant to you - about your spending habits and where you may have saving opportunities. Or you can also  question our chatbot Ashlee – see our blog ‘Ask Ashlee – Raiz Intelligent Chatbot’ [caption id="attachment_3737" align="aligncenter" width="300"] My Finance Tip[/caption] How it works To use My Finance, please make sure you link up your spending accounts as this is how My Finance will be able to provide you personalised insights. The more up to date your My Finance is with categorised spends and linked accounts, the more accurate this will be. [caption id="attachment_3738" align="aligncenter" width="300"] Link your spending accounts to see where you spend[/caption] Check out ‘Uncategorised’ tab in My Finance Check out the ‘Uncategorised’ tab within ‘Categorise Transactions’ to categorise any that My Finance was unable to. My Finance will then learn to categorise this in the future and give you better insights, powered by machine learning technology. You are also able to change categorised transactions that we may have categorised wrong at any time by tapping on ‘All’ and the specific transaction you’d like to change. It will also fix up past transactions and My Finance will learn to categorise this in the future as well.   [caption id="attachment_3739" align="aligncenter" width="300"]Check out the ‘Uncategorised’ tab within ‘Categorise Transactions’ Check out the ‘Uncategorised’ tab within ‘Categorise Transactions’[/caption]   Future Cash My Finance also projects your future free cash based on your past spending and income, which may also help you determine if you are spending above your means or if you can save more. [caption id="attachment_3743" align="aligncenter" width="366"] Project your future free cash[/caption] Integrated into our Raiz Chat We know it can be hard to quickly check or calculate your expenses on the go. That’s why My Finance is also integrated into our Raiz Chatbot, Ashlee who will be able to respond to your spending and future cashflow questions in real-time. You can check this out in more detail on our blog – ‘Ask Ashlee – Raiz Intelligent Chatbot Questions’  

Don’t have the Raiz App?

Download it for free in the App store or the Webapp below: [caption id="attachment_3372" align="aligncenter" width="351"]download-raiz-app Click to download the Raiz App[/caption]   Important Information The information on this website is general advice only.  This means it does not consider any person’s investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this article to fully understand the benefits and risk associated with the Raiz product. The information in this website is confidential. It must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person. The information is based on assumptions or market conditions which change without notice. This will impact the accuracy of the information. Under no circumstances is the information to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of deciding about investing in Raiz.   Past return performance of the Raiz product should not be relied on for deciding to invest in Raiz and is not a good predictor of future performance.
5 things to consider when buying a home
[caption id="attachment_3718" align="aligncenter" width="619"] By Rachel Gopez - uno Home Loans[/caption]  
  1. Where do I start?
Buying a property can be one of the most stressful times in your life. A lot of research, time and effort is required to find the ideal house. There are many things to consider, so it helps to have a structured set of steps to follow when starting the process. A great starting point is to work out a budget based on your deposit and how much you can borrow. It can be tricky to pull numbers out of thin air, so using an online calculator such as
uno’s borrowing calculator is a great tool to help you work this out. Once you get your pre-approval secured, you’ll have a good estimation of what purchase price you’re looking at. After finalising your exact budget, you can get started on the fun part: finding your dream home!  
  1. How much money do I need for a deposit?
A deposit isn’t the exact same amount for everyone. When calculating your home deposit, most lenders generally require 10% of the property’s value and sometimes only 5%. For example, if the property you want to buy is valued at $800,000, the deposit required would usually be between $40,000 (5% of $800,000) and $80,000 (for a 10% deposit). With a 5% deposit, it needs to comprise genuine savings. This doesn’t include money from a parent or third party (this is known as a gift) and must be savings in a bank account. The more money you have saved for a deposit, the better. “Having at least a 20% deposit is your best option, as it saves you from paying lenders mortgage insurance,” says uno Home Loans team leader, Chris McNaughton.  
  1. Can I buy a property with no deposit saved?
So you’re not a famous blogger and have no money saved yet? All is not lost! A guarantor loan is one way to buy property when you don’t have a deposit. A guarantor is legally responsible for paying back the entire loan if you cannot make the loan repayments. The guarantor is usually a family member and will also have to pay any fees, charges and interest. Learn more about guarantor loans here.  
  1. What costs are involved in buying a home?
The exact costs involved in buying property depend on which state you live in. This is due to the variance in house prices, stamp duty and legal costs. You can calculate how much stamp duty you’ll have to pay, based on your state, here. You’ll also have to pay a transfer fee and a mortgage registration fee. The transfer fee is roughly around $200-$300 and the mortgage registration fee is around $100-$150. The legal work involved in preparing the contract of sale and thoroughly reading all legal documents is called conveyancing. A conveyancer can help you arrange and make changes to a contract. The price range for this service is typically around $600 to $1,500.  
  1. How much does an average house cost in Australia?
Australian property prices are talked about more than Australia’s Prime Minister (who is it again?). Asking the cost of a house in Australia is like asking how much a latte costs: it really depends on where you are. Median property prices in each state change month-to-month, but you can find updated data from property analytics company CoreLogic. Remember, buying a home is one of the biggest decisions you’re likely to make in your lifetime. You want to do your research and take it seriously.   About Author Rachel Gopez is Content Producer at uno Home Loans, the online mortgage broker. Looking for a new home loan? What used to take days with banks and brokers can how be done in less than 10 minutes – from your lap top or mobile phone. uno is an online mortgage broker with one mission: to help you win at home loans. Whether you’re a home buyer or looking to refinance an existing loan, uno puts the power back in your hands. Visit www.unohomeloans.com.au   It’s important to note that the information we give here is general in nature – no matter how helpful or relatable you find our articles. Even if it seems like we’re writing about you, it’s not personal or financial advice. That’s why you should always ask a professional before making any life-changing decisions.   Raiz: Need a way to start saving for a house deposit? Use Raiz to set up a Savings Goal to help you reach that house deposit easier. While just having round-ups turned on might take longer than you’d like to save this up, you can also set up a recurring investment or invest lumpsum deposits whenever you have free cash to spare. You can also manage your budget through the MyFinance feature, which shows an overview of your current and future cashflow. By automating your Savings plan, you can spend more time on looking for your perfect home! [caption id="attachment_3723" align="aligncenter" width="300"] Set up a Savings Goal in Raiz to reach your deposit easier![/caption]   Important Information The information on this website is general advice only.  This means it does not consider any person’s investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this article to fully understand the benefits and risk associated with the Raiz product. The information in this website is confidential. It must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person. The information is based on assumptions or market conditions which change without notice. This will impact the accuracy of the information. Under no circumstances is the information to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of deciding about investing in Raiz.   Past return performance of the Raiz product should not be relied on for deciding to invest in Raiz and is not a good predictor of future performance.
Raiz Study: Recent political turmoil causing millennials to spend less
Sydney, Australia – 3 October 2018 – New research by Raiz Invest Limited, the mobile-first micro-investing platform, shows the recent political climate has made millennials more financially risk averse, with almost half (44 per cent) spending less than six months ago. An even greater proportion (48 per cent) considering changes to their investment strategy.   More than 1,000 young Australians were asked about changes in spending and savings habits, as well as trust in major institutions around personal finances – including superannuation, savings and investment funds – to uncover the impact of these major events on their behaviour.

 

Australians are feeling disillusioned - Raiz Study

No surprise that nearly one in three (29 per cent) mistrust their financial institutions with their superannuation, with a third (34 per cent) remaining neutral. A quarter of respondents no longer trusted financial institutions with their investment funds.   Recent research from the Museum of Australian Democracy and University of Canberra reinforces the growing pattern of disillusionment and cynicism with Australian politics. Only 31 per cent expressed trust in the Federal Government.   “Repeated leadership spills, continued investigation into the big banks, insurance and super regulation have all truly unsettled Australians, causing them to call into question, where they invest and deposit their savings and assets,” Raiz Invest Managing Director, George Lucas, says. “It is not a good outcome for the entire financial services industry including Raiz with all institutions and FinTechs being tainted by the revelations in the Royal Commission”.  royal commission study raiz

Millennials more risk averse

The research found more than half (51 per cent) of millennials consider themselves risk averse when it comes to investing. One in ten described themselves as extremely risk-averse investors. Since the Royal Commission into financial services, the majority still are not ready to consolidate superannuation into one fund, with over one in five (22 per cent) stating that they believe it’s better to spread the risk across a few funds and 34 per cent admitting to being ill informed on such matters.   “The high number of risk-averse millennials correlates with the idea of disillusionment in financial institutions.  It is not surprising that they still are reluctant to consolidate their superannuation into one financial institution but would rather spread the risk. Going forward the average Australian will find it more difficult and expensive to get financial advice, making it more important than ever that the FinTech industry continues to grow to fill the gap and provide advice in new innovative ways,” Lucas says.   “We’re seeing the games in Canberra having a real affect, with 58 per cent of millennials either saving more or spending less as confidence in politics shrinks,” Lucas says. “We are also seeing real impacts from the Royal Commission, with outcomes that may not benefit the average Australian, like more expensive financial advice or making it harder to obtain a home loan. Millennials need to continue the trend of saving and investing and improving their financial literacy early to meet the changing landscape of financial services in Australia.”   Raiz encourages millennials and all Australians to invest for the future, putting complete control in the palm of their hand. Through Raiz Invest and Raiz Invest Super, we will continue to help Australian’s become more financially literate and improve their financial confidence.   royal commission study raiz   Important Information The information on this website is general advice only.  This means it does not consider any person’s investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this article to fully understand the benefits and risk associated with the Raiz product. The information in this website is confidential. It must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person. The information is based on assumptions or market conditions which change without notice. This will impact the accuracy of the information. Under no circumstances is the information to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of deciding about investing in Raiz.   Past return performance of the Raiz product should not be relied on for deciding to invest in Raiz and is not a good predictor of future performance.
Raiz Reviews - 300,000+ Australians have signed up to Raiz after being referred
raiz reviews Since launch, 300,000+ Australians have signed up to Raiz after being referred*. We want to thank you for bringing us up with your friends and family, for sharing your stories and for thinking of us when others ask for recommendations. Without your support, Raiz would not be possible! Your Raiz reviews – good and bad have continued to help us improve the Raiz product and features.

Check out some Raiz reviews below:

  [caption id="attachment_3687" align="aligncenter" width="794"]raiz reviews Raiz Review - Michael[/caption] [caption id="attachment_3688" align="aligncenter" width="794"]raiz reviews Raiz Review - Stephen[/caption] [caption id="attachment_3684" align="aligncenter" width="794"]raiz reviews Raiz Review - Jamie[/caption] [caption id="attachment_3682" align="aligncenter" width="794"]raiz reviews Raiz Review - Alyve[/caption] [caption id="attachment_3683" align="aligncenter" width="794"]raiz reviews Raiz Review - Anna[/caption] [caption id="attachment_3685" align="aligncenter" width="794"]raiz reviews Raiz Review - Luke[/caption] [caption id="attachment_3686" align="aligncenter" width="794"]raiz reviews Raiz Review - Matthew[/caption]   Since launch, we have released 9 major features from your direct feedback and support. We look forward to continue growing our community and product with your feedback and support! Your Raiz Team *Referred both paid & unpaid  

Don’t have the Raiz App?

Download it for free in the App store or the Webapp below:
[caption id="attachment_3372" align="aligncenter" width="351"]download-raiz-app Click to download the Raiz App[/caption]
Important Information The information on this website is general advice only.  This means it does not consider any person’s investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this article to fully understand the benefits and risk associated with the Raiz product. The information in this website is confidential. It must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person. The information is based on assumptions or market conditions which change without notice. This will impact the accuracy of the information. Under no circumstances is the information to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of deciding about investing in Raiz.   Past return performance of the Raiz product should not be relied on for deciding to invest in Raiz and is not a good predictor of future performance.
September 2018
Terms & Conditions For Entering Our Raiz Invest Super Facebook Competition
  1. An active Raiz Invest Super Account must be held (account balance greater than $5). Raiz account holders hold valid accounts as set out in the product disclosure statements found on the website: www.raizinvest.com.au .
  2. Entries open Thursday 27thSeptember 2018 at 4PM and entries close Friday October 5th October 2018 at 5PM. To enter, one must comment on the Facebook post within the time frame stated above.
  3. Raiz Invest will select five winners with a $100.00 credit investment in to their active Raiz Investment Account. These five investments will be selected at Raiz’s discretion.
  4.  These five Raiz Account holders will be requested to message us their email and will be notified by email when the credit investment is deposited into their Raiz Investment account by Friday 19th October 2018.
  5. The permit number in the format “NSW Permit No. LTPM/17/02522.”
  6.  This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with any other third party.
  7. By entering this promotion, you agree that we may use entries for future marketing purposes in any media or branding.
  8.  The competition is promoted by Raiz Invest Australia Limited, Level 11/2 Bulletin Place Sydney 2000 NSW, 1300 754 748. ABN 26 604 402 815, who is the Authorised Representative of AFSL 434776. The Raiz product is issued in Australia by Instreet Investment Limited (ACN 128 813 016 AFSL 434776) and promoted by Raiz Invest Australia Limited (ACN 604 402 815). A Product Disclosure Statement dated 10th April 2018 for this product is available on the Raiz website and App. A person should read and consider the Product Disclosure Statement in deciding whether or not to acquire and continue to hold interests in the product. The risks of investing in this product are fully set out in the Product Disclosure Statement and include the risks that would ordinarily apply to investing.
NSW Permit No. LTPM/17/02522
5 Ways to Save More with Raiz
5 Ways to save more with Raiz Do you like to save? Here are 5 ways to save more by making the most out of Raiz!

Automate your Savings Goal

By automating and naming your savings goal, this will help reaching your goal easier. With our Savings Goal feature, you can set a recurring investment in-line with your pay day, as Raiz allows you to customise investing daily, weekly, fortnightly or monthly. You can customise the goal name to keep you focused on what you are trying to achieve. You are also less likely to miss or notice the money when investing in small amounts regularly and stops you from thinking “I will save on my next pay” (on every pay check!) [caption id="attachment_3663" align="aligncenter" width="300"] Automate your Savings Goal[/caption]

Check out ‘Uncategorised’ tab in My Finance

MyFinance is a free to use feature within the Raiz app. It provides you personalised insights and notifications on how you are spending. Spending is the other side of the equation and keeping a handle on this can help you meet your savings goals. MyFinance also projects your future free cash based on your past spending and income, which may also help you determine if you are spending above your means or if you can save more. To make the most out of it on ways to save more, link up all your spending accounts and check out the ‘Uncategorised’ tab within ‘Categorise Transactions’ to categorise any that MyFinance was unable to. MyFinance will then learn to give you better insights, powered by machine learning technology. [caption id="attachment_3664" align="aligncenter" width="300"] Check out ‘Uncategorised’ tab in My Finance[/caption]  

Do your normal shopping through Raiz Rewards

Better than loyalty points! Racking up points which you can redeem later (for half a toaster…) have been the traditional model for rewards programs. With Raiz Rewards, by just clicking through our links, you can earn a cash reward on eligible purchases, invested back into your Raiz account. Just like the Raiz philosophy, all these small rewards can add up, especially with over 100 brands partners to shop from. Already do your clothing or grocery shopping online? Take advantage of saving more simply by doing the same shopping through the Raiz platform and receiving a cash reward every time. Read more about ways to save with Raiz Rewards on our blog - '
Raiz Rewards: Cash-forward is the new cashback' [caption id="attachment_3665" align="aligncenter" width="300"] Do your normal shopping through Raiz Rewards to get rewarded[/caption]    

Get to know your finances instantly with Ashlee, the Raiz Chatbot

The problem with managing your finances in the past was having to manually do it yourself, usually through a tedious spreadsheet. We’ve changed this by integrating our chatbot, Ashlee, with Facebook Messenger. Much like a personal fitness coach, Ashlee makes getting to know your finance easy and simple. She can respond in real-time on questions around your spending habits e.g. “How much did I spend on shopping last week?” or “how about last month?” as well as answer questions on future savings e.g. “Can I afford to buy a new phone?” or “how long will it take me to save $2,000?”. For more questions and ways to save more, check out our blog - 'Ask Ashlee – Raiz Intelligent Chatbot Questions' To use, just go into your Facebook Messenger app and search for 'Raiz Chatbot'. Please note, you will need a Facebook Messenger account to access the Chatbot. The more up to date your MyFinance is with categorised spends and linked accounts, the more accurate the responses from Ashlee will be. [caption id="" align="aligncenter" width="298"] Get to know your finances instantly with Ashlee[/caption]  

Personal Contributions to Raiz Invest Super

The more you save for your future now, the higher the potential income can be when the future arrives. New laws passed in July 2017 means all employees are now eligible to claim personal tax deductions on contributions up to a cap. Prior to this, it was limited and required arranging a salary sacrifice with your employer. This means now your savings in Raiz Invest Super may be tax deductible* through personal contributions! You can also open a Raiz Invest Super account and see all your other superannuation funds or consolidate any other existing Super funds you may have into Raiz Invest Super. By doing this, it may save you more from removing extra fees and insurance premiums. With Raiz, see all your investments in one place on your mobile phone. [caption id="attachment_3391" align="aligncenter" width="300"]raiz-super-app Raiz Invest Super is fully integrated into the Raiz app.[/caption]  

Don’t have the Raiz App?

Download it for free in the App store or the Webapp below: [caption id="attachment_3372" align="aligncenter" width="351"]download-raiz-app Click to download the Raiz App[/caption]   Important Information The information on this website is general advice only.  This means it does not consider any person’s investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this article to fully understand the benefits and risk associated with the Raiz product. The information in this website is confidential. It must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person. The information is based on assumptions or market conditions which change without notice. This will impact the accuracy of the information. Under no circumstances is the information to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of deciding about investing in Raiz.   Past return performance of the Raiz product should not be relied on for deciding to invest in Raiz and is not a good predictor of future performance.   * For the new rules, there are certain eligibility criteria, which are not trivial, so you do need to check with a licensed tax adviser (or other) before deciding to make voluntary contributions and claim a deduction.
Channel 9 News - Feature - The app increasing your super while you spend
Thanks to Channel 9 News for the great piece on how Raiz is helping Australians save more for their goals and Superannuation! To read more, please go to their article - 'The app increasing your super while you spend' or watch the video below.   [caption id="attachment_3648" align="aligncenter" width="300"] Channel 9 news video below[/caption] [embed]https://d2mhoisd9uf1g8.cloudfront.net/Channel%209%20News_20th%20Sep%202018.mp4[/embed]   Article Excerpt: Raiz is helping consumers use their spare change to boost retirement savings through an easy-to-manage investment account. And Raiz user Nathan Martyn said he has already saved hundreds. “I wanted to start paying attention to where my super was and how it was likely to generate over time,” Martyn told Nine News. “I’ve had over the last six months about $500, which has generated about a 10% return,” he said. Superannuation money is invested into the same funds as the investment account where your spare change goes. You then choose whether to invest in lower or higher risk funds, and can see how it is performing every day. “You have a Raiz invest account and with the push of a button your details are transferred over to create a super account,” said Raiz chief operating officer Brendan Malone. “It brings all your super into one place, into one investment app where you can see the opportunities.”  

Don’t have the Raiz App?

Download it for free in the App store or the Webapp below:
[caption id="attachment_3372" align="aligncenter" width="351"]download-raiz-app Click to download the Raiz app[/caption]  
Important Information The information on this website is general advice only. This means it does not take into account any person’s particular investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this article to fully understand the benefits and risk associated with the Raiz product. The information in this website is confidential. It must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person. The information is based on assumptions or market conditions which change without notice. This will impact the accuracy of the information. Under no circumstances is the information to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of deciding about investing in Raiz. Past return performance of the Raiz product should not be relied on for making a decision to invest in Raiz and is not a good predictor of future performance.
Ask Ashlee – Raiz Intelligent Chatbot Questions
We are excited to announce a new feature – the Raiz Facebook Chatbot – Ashlee – to help you feel even more control of your finances! Ashlee, the intelligent Chatbot, can answer both generic and specific questions relating to you such as “What is my balance?”, “How much did I spend on shopping last week? last month?” or “Can I afford to go out tonight?” [caption id="" align="aligncenter" width="298"] Chat to Ashlee, the Raiz Chatbot through your Facebook Messenger App[/caption] Ashlee responds in real-time to questions specific to you, through Facebook messenger to your mobile phone. The more up to date your MyFinance is with categorised spends and linked accounts, the more accurate the responses from Ashlee will be. To use, just go into your Facebook Messenger app and search for 'Raiz Chatbot'. Please note, you will need a Facebook Messenger account to access the Chatbot. [caption id="attachment_3622" align="aligncenter" width="300"] Search 'Raiz Chatbot' in the Facebook Messenger App[/caption]   Below is a list of questions you can ask Ashlee, the Raiz Chatbot! Ashlee can answer both generic and specific questions relating to your Raiz account. Feel free to try ask her any other questions so we can continue improving her responses.   [caption id="attachment_3627" align="aligncenter" width="840"] List of Questions you can ask Ashlee - or try test your own[/caption]   Below is a Video Demo on how to get started with Ashlee - the Raiz Chatbot: [embed]https://d2mhoisd9uf1g8.cloudfront.net/Chatbot%20Example%20Video.mp4[/embed]  

Article Mentions

   

Don’t have the Raiz App?

Download it for free in the App store or the Webapp below:
[caption id="attachment_3372" align="aligncenter" width="351"]download-raiz-app Click to download the Raiz app[/caption]  
Important Information The information on this website and through the Chatbot is general advice only. This means it does not take into account any person’s particular investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this article to fully understand the benefits and risk associated with the Raiz product. The information in this website is confidential. It must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person. The information is based on assumptions or market conditions which change without notice. This will impact the accuracy of the information. Under no circumstances is the information to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of deciding about investing in Raiz. Past return performance of the Raiz product should not be relied on for making a decision to invest in Raiz and is not a good predictor of future performance.
Raiz Invest brings financial insights to life with Facebook chatbot
Sydney, Australia – September 18, 2018: Raiz Invest Limited, the mobile-first micro-investing platform, has today launched a chatbot to improve the user experience. Customers can ask Ashlee specific questions about their account or the financial markets and get general customer support. Much like a personal fitness coach, the aim is to help Australians have a healthier relationship with their finances. With an active (paying) customer base of more than 172,000, skewing towards the under-35 demographic, Ashlee provides intuitive and real-time responses. Integrated on Facebook Messenger, it takes advantage of the personal and instant nature of the app in aligning with millennials.   Personalised on-demand investment updates Ashlee further personalises the Raiz experience. She will answer personal spending questions by category including shopping, entertainment and dining. She’ll even advise whether you can afford to go out for dinner by predicting your future cash balance based on historic spending patterns. [caption id="" align="aligncenter" width="298"] Ashlee, the Raiz Chatbot can respond in real-time[/caption]   Developed by Raiz and powered by the latest artificial intelligence (AI) technology, Ashlee offers tips based on your historic spending and income. This provides a personalised experience via your mobile phone whenever you need guidance. This helps to plan more effectively for the future. Check out the type of questions you can ask here. “The Royal Commission into financial services will cause a significant reduction in the number of financial advisors and consultation costs will increase,” Raiz Invest Managing Director, George Lucas, says. “The average Australian will find it more difficult and expensive to get financial advice. “Ashlee is designed to fill part of this gap and will improve over time. Her investment and spending tips are instantly available, providing customers with bite-sized financial assistance when they need it most via their mobile phone.”   The future of micro-investing integration Ashlee continuously learns and gathers new insights using artificial intelligence. She’ll eventually be connected with Google Assistant and Siri. “Ashlee will help young Australians engage with their financial future by providing instant financial assistance when they need. This will give millennials the freedom to make better financial decisions for the future,” Lucas says. “Improving financial confidence is a goal we’re passionate about at Raiz. We’re excited to see how we can further adopt AI and help our customers make better decisions. We strive to continually think up new and innovative ways to improve engagement with their savings, so they can meet their goals.”   You can find Ashlee by searching ‘Raiz Chatbot’ on the Facebook Messenger App. [caption id="attachment_3622" align="aligncenter" width="300"] Search 'Raiz Chatbot' in the Facebook Messenger App[/caption]   Below is a Video Demo on how to get started with Ashlee – the Raiz Chatbot: [embed]https://d2mhoisd9uf1g8.cloudfront.net/Chatbot%20Example%20Video.mp4[/embed]  

Article Mentions

   

Don’t have the Raiz App?

Download it for free in the App store or the Webapp below:
[caption id="attachment_3372" align="aligncenter" width="351"]download-raiz-app Click to download the Raiz app[/caption]
  Important Information The information on this website and through the Chatbot is general advice only. This means it does not take into account any person’s particular investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this article to fully understand the benefits and risk associated with the Raiz product. The information in this website is confidential. It must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person. The information is based on assumptions or market conditions which change without notice. This will impact the accuracy of the information. Under no circumstances is the information to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of deciding about investing in Raiz. Past return performance of the Raiz product should not be relied on for making a decision to invest in Raiz and is not a good predictor of future performance.
Investing definitions and terms
New to investing or want to test your knowledge? Below are some helpful investing definitions on common words related to investing.  It would be great if there were no risks associated with investing, but there are, and because of market movements and other risk the value of investments can go up and down. To learn more about risks you should read this blog - 'Risks of Investing'    ETF Short for ‘exchange traded fund’, is a security that trades like a stock on a stock exchange. It usually tracks an index of stocks, bonds or more alternative assets like commodities of infrastructure. [caption id="attachment_3597" align="aligncenter" width="400"] ETF[/caption]   Dollar Cost Averaging An investment principle of buying a fixed dollar amount into a particular investment on a disciplined regular basis. The investor purchases more shares (units) when prices are low and fewer shares when prices are high. [caption id="attachment_3598" align="aligncenter" width="400"] Dollar Cost Averaging[/caption]   S&P 500 The Standard & Poor’s index that tracks 500 of the biggest companies listed in the USA and is a favourite tool for analysts trying to understand how the US market as a whole is performing. [caption id="attachment_3599" align="aligncenter" width="400"] S&P 500[/caption]   Net Worth The value of your assets minus any debt you owe. [caption id="attachment_3600" align="aligncenter" width="400"] Net Worth[/caption]   Compounding Generating earnings from previous earnings, when these returns are reinvested. Such as when the dividend you previously earned on your investment starts earning market returns as well. [caption id="attachment_3601" align="aligncenter" width="400"] Compounding[/caption]   Diversification Spreading your money among different investments to reduce the market risk. [caption id="attachment_3602" align="aligncenter" width="400"] Diversification[/caption]   Asset Anything of value is an asset: cash, stock, a car, a house, even the money owed to you by someone else. [caption id="attachment_3603" align="aligncenter" width="400"] Asset[/caption]   Dividend Money paid by a company back to their shareholder, out of its profits. [caption id="attachment_3604" align="aligncenter" width="400"] Dividend[/caption]   Volatility The rate at which the price of an asset changes - increases or decreases - over a given period of time. It is used as a measure of market risk. [caption id="attachment_3605" align="aligncenter" width="400"] Volatility[/caption] Liquidity A market's ability to absorb a purchase or sell order for an asset without causing significant change in the asset's price. [caption id="attachment_3606" align="aligncenter" width="400"] Liquidity[/caption]   20-30-50 Rule Allocate 20% of your monthly income towards goals, 50% for fixed expenses and 30% for flexible spending. [caption id="attachment_3607" align="aligncenter" width="400"] 20-30-50 Rule[/caption]   Basis Point 1 basis point is equal to 0.01% so 100 basis points is 1%. [caption id="attachment_3608" align="aligncenter" width="400"] Basis Point[/caption]    

Don’t have the Raiz App?

Download it for free in the App store or the Webapp below:
[caption id="attachment_3372" align="aligncenter" width="351"]download-raiz-app Click to download the Raiz app[/caption]  
Important Information The information on this website is general advice only. This means it does not take into account any person’s particular investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this article to fully understand the benefits and risk associated with the Raiz product. The information in this website is confidential. It must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person. The information is based on assumptions or market conditions which change without notice. This will impact the accuracy of the information. Under no circumstances is the information to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of deciding about investing in Raiz. Past return performance of the Raiz product should not be relied on for making a decision to invest in Raiz and is not a good predictor of future performance.
Risks of Investing
While the Raiz Philosophy is to invest small amounts regularly to manage the uncertainty associated with markets, it cannot eliminate it.  All investments carry risk, and some of them are not market risk. Different strategies may carry different levels of risk, and assets with the highest long-term returns may have the highest level of short-term risks. Below is a list of significant risks to consider before using Raiz. For more info, check out our Raiz PDS.  

PERFORMANCE RISK

The value of your Raiz Investment Account, can go up or down. Returns are not guaranteed, and you may lose money. The rate of return varies, so future returns may differ from past returns. Risk impacts vary for individual investors depending on age, investment time frame, and other investments held.  

MARKET RISK

Changes in financial markets, the economy, political changes, technological developments, and changes in market sentiment continually affect the value of investments and the level of income they generate. For instance, if you request a full cash withdrawal or close your Raiz Investment Account the amount you receive may be different (including less) from the last value displayed in your App due to market movements.  

INTEREST RATE RISK

Changes in interest rates can directly and indirectly affect investment value or returns. For example, an increase in official interest rates can result in a increase in the interest you receive on your cash but could also cause a fall in the value of bonds and other fixed interest securities.  

PORTFOLIO PERFORMANCE RISK

The performance of your Raiz Investment Account may vary from the performance of another Raiz Investment Account which invests in the same Selected Portfolio. This is because contributions will be invested in the Selected Portfolio over time and for differing amounts, and the rebalancing algorithm may lead to different weightings between Portfolios, differences in fees charged and in buy/sell spreads incurred when selling ETF to pay fees.   Important Information The information on this website is general advice only. This means it does not take into account any person’s particular investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this article to fully understand the benefits and risk associated with the Raiz product. The information in this website is confidential. It must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person. The information is based on assumptions or market conditions which change without notice. This will impact the accuracy of the information. Under no circumstances is the information to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of deciding about investing in Raiz. Past return performance of the Raiz product should not be relied on for making a decision to invest in Raiz and is not a good predictor of future performance.
Why you don’t care about Future you
‘That’s a future me problem’. Have you ever thought that to yourself? It’s a common thing that we all do. We tend to always care less about future you than the current you, which can lead to negative consequences. This is a problem that affects everyone. For example, it is why 13% of Australian’s still smoke, as it is a problem for tomorrow. Also surprisingly, 40% of Australians have no idea how much money they have saved for future them in their superannuation, and 1 in 4 Raiz users have four or more Super funds, eroding away their money through extra sets of fees and maybe ineffective insurances. [caption id="" align="aligncenter" width="300"] What eroding fees look like[/caption] Before online superannuation products came out, it would take hours to sort this all out, or cost thousands if you asked a financial planner.  However, today it can be done in a few minutes. So by taking just a few minutes today to sort out your future, this can potentially save you a life changing amount for tomorrow. Yet most of us don’t and won’t do this. But why don’t we care about future us? The most famous case is the Marshmallow experiment. [caption id="" align="aligncenter" width="400"] The Marshmallow experiment - one treat right now or two treats later?[/caption] In it, researches gave children some marshmallows. The choice was simple: one treat right now or two treats later. They had the option to either eat them straight away or wait for the researcher to come back in 15 minutes and then they’d get double the marshmallows. Only a few kids managed to wait until the researchers came back to be rewarded with two treats. Researchers have since tried to uncover the reasons behind why we care less about the future you vs. present you:   1. You see future you as a foreign person. Several studies have revealed that we often treat our future selves like complete strangers. This is the main reason you may struggle to save money or can’t choose the healthy salad despite promising yourself to be on a diet this week. [caption id="" align="aligncenter" width="500"] You see future you as a foreign person.[/caption] The good news is that by getting better connected with future you, you can make better choices in the now and later, such as creating a Savings Goal or actively showing your future funds to the present you.   2. Our brains are hardwired to not think about our future you. Studies have also found that thinking about your current self triggers different brain regions than when thinking about your future self. Thinking about future you actually activates the same areas of the brain as when we think about other people. This means our brain transmits present and future consequences to different parts of your brain. While you may know the benefits of helping future you now, you are unlikely to feel it. [caption id="" align="aligncenter" width="480"] Me to myself: Who are you?[/caption] One way to train yourself in changing this is by linking present goals with future ones. For example, by seeing both your short-term savings goal and superannuation in the one place, this will allow you to better link and recognise your present self with your future consequences and rewards.   3. We prefer definite over indefinite options. Is there a guarantee there’s really going to be double the number of marshmallows if we wait? Earlier studies showed there are many situations in which children can’t be certain that they would receive the delayed outcome. However, as we develop into adults, this is a thinking pattern we can learn to be aware of. Think in certainty. For example, while the time of your retirement can feel indefinite, it is certain that sorting out your superannuation now will allow you the best possible outcome for your retirement later. By being self-aware of how you can help future you, this will mean a better outcome for both of your selves today and tomorrow! [caption id="" align="aligncenter" width="300"] Self-5![/caption]   Feel more connected to your future now by exploring ‘Raiz Super’ in Raiz App today 🙂 Remember: “The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second-best time is now.”    

Don’t have the Raiz App?

Download it for free in the App store or the Webapp below:
[caption id="attachment_3372" align="aligncenter" width="351"]download-raiz-app Click to download the Raiz app[/caption]
  References: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/5010404 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2656877/ https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18156588 https://www.newscientist.com/article/2127901-your-true-self-the-future-is-a-foreign-person/ https://jamesclear.com/delayed-gratification   Important Information The information on this website is general advice only. This means it does not take into account any person’s particular investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this article to fully understand the benefits and risk associated with the Raiz product. The information in this website is confidential. It must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person. The information is based on assumptions or market conditions which change without notice. This will impact the accuracy of the information. Under no circumstances is the information to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of deciding about investing in Raiz. Past return performance of the Raiz product should not be relied on for making a decision to invest in Raiz and is not a good predictor of future performance.
August 2018
How to start Investing? Spare change and micro-investing
Choice, the leading consumer advocacy group in Australia, has provided a very comprehensive and extensive explanation of all things Raiz. To read more, please go to their article - 'Raiz: Spare change and smartphone investing' Excerpt below: Historically, two things have worked against young people investing in the stock market. First, a lack of knowledge about how to start investing. Second, not having enough money available to be of interest to the businesses that facilitate such investments. For example, if you chose to cut out the middleman and invest directly in the same ETFs, you would need hundreds of dollars to buy a single 'unit' in one of these funds. Likewise, investment funds, financial advisers and stockbrokers are typically only interested in clients who have a substantial sum to invest.

 

Overcoming barriers

Raiz addresses both of these barriers to entry. First, while Raiz does aspire to educate its customers, they don't need to know anything about investing to get started. Customers just download the Raiz app to their smartphone then link their Raiz investment account to their bank accounts and credit or debit cards. Raiz then pools the deposits from its customers and buys units in ETFs. For example, if 100 Raiz users deposit $9.50 each, Raiz will arrange the purchase of a $950 ETF unit and give each of those customers a one per cent stake in it. When that ETF pays dividends and distributions, each of those customers receives a one per cent share. Raiz isn't an ETF (or a brokerage, or investment fund). It simply provides the platform that allows its customers to pool their money and invest in the stock market via ETFs.  

Expert opinions

Raiz has attracted a lot of attention, including from the nation's personal finance experts. Noel Whittaker is a fan, having long dreamed of a product available to "anybody with a few dollars to invest, where investment could be automatic and your money placed in share-based investments without the hassle of going through a broker, paying brokerage or trying to save a big lump sum to get going".   To read more, please go to their article - 'Raiz: Spare change and smartphone investing' [caption id="attachment_3541" align="alignleft" width="250"] Choice, the leading consumer advocacy group in Australia[/caption]         See our other blogs - 'Raiz Invest Super: Bringing Superannuation to your mobile phone'    

Don’t have the Raiz App?

Download it for free in the App store or the Webapp below:
[caption id="attachment_3372" align="aligncenter" width="351"]download-raiz-app Click to download the Raiz app[/caption]
  Important Information The information on this website is general advice only. This means it does not take into account any person’s particular investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this article to fully understand the benefits and risk associated with the Raiz product. The information in this website is confidential. It must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person. The information is based on assumptions or market conditions which change without notice. This will impact the accuracy of the information. Under no circumstances is the information to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of deciding about investing in Raiz. Past return performance of the Raiz product should not be relied on for making a decision to invest in Raiz and is not a good predictor of future performance.
Raiz Security: Bank-level Security and Encryption

Raiz Security

If this is your first time using Raiz to invest and save, we wanted to assure you that Raiz takes your security seriously (being an ASX publicly listed company and ASIC regulated). Your security is our highest priority. Raiz works hard to protect your information, prevent unauthorised account access, and notify you of any unusual activity.  

Bank Level Encryption

We protect the data and banking credentials you share with us, whether on our website or our app, with 256-bit encryption. That's the same level of encryption used by all the top Australian financial institutions.

Bank Level Security

We employ the latest bank-level security, and
artificial intelligence technology to keep your personal information safe on our servers.

Monitor for unusual activity

Even after all these safeguards, we monitor your account for any unusual activity and will immediately send you an account alert.

Insured against fraudulent and criminal activity

Finally, your money is insured against fraudulent and criminal activity through Lloyds of London. To find out more, please check out our Raiz security page or video below.

Raiz Security:

[embed]https://d2mhoisd9uf1g8.cloudfront.net/Raiz_Security_FINAL(music).mp4[/embed]   Important Information The information on this website is general advice only. This means it does not take into account any person’s particular investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this article to fully understand the benefits and risk associated with the Raiz product. The information in this website is confidential. It must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person. The information is based on assumptions or market conditions which change without notice. This will impact the accuracy of the information. Under no circumstances is the information to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of deciding about investing in Raiz. Past return performance of the Raiz product should not be relied on for making a decision to invest in Raiz and is not a good predictor of future performance.
Consumer still drowning after Royal Commission
By George Lucas, Managing Director & CEO of Raiz Invest The revelations unfolding at the Royal Commission into banking and financial services would make a mafia don blush. The pillars of banking and wealth management have been exposed for overcharging or charging for no service, poor and often conflicted advice, misleading regulators, and contravening trust laws, and that’s just to name but a few miscreant deeds. Reputations of regulators, corporates and individuals, are being trashed. It’s good that we are having a root-and-branch inquiry into our financial services system. Those who said an inquiry wasn’t necessary, from politicians to analysts to senior journalists, haven’t got egg on their faces. They have omelettes. But once it’s over and the media circus has moved on, where’s it going to leave most consumers. In my opinion, certainly not better off, and possibly worse off. Let me explain. It seems to me that there are three certainties coming out of this inquiry; tighter regulations, higher professional standards demanded of those offering advice, and stricter enforcement by the regulatory bodies. All good outcomes in themselves, but they do have one obvious consequence – higher fees – especially as they will have higher levels of education. In addition, there are suggestions that many advisers will chose to exit the industry (some suggest up to 50%). It means that advice could very much become the preserve of the well-heeled; the very people it could be argued least need advice. But for many Australians, getting good advice will be beyond their financial means, and this in a country where financial literacy is nothing short of a national disgrace.  As the Royal Commission was told, a 2006 survey showed 46 per cent of people aged between 15 and 74 struggle to understand simple financial services documents, and it’s my guess this situation hasn’t improved. So, the very consumers who have been shown to be the most vulnerable could now find themselves unable to afford any advice, although, it should be added, no advice is better than the bad advice many have been getting. So, what to do? It seems to me there are three viable options. First, there needs to be a focus on financial literacy – and it needs to start at an early age. Via social media it is possible to reach young people on matters financial, but they still need to have the basic financial literacy skills to distil this information. Governments, state and federal, need to make this priority, and not keep paying lip service to it.  This is one of the benefits of the Raiz App which increases financial literacy from the hands-on experience of participating in financial markets. Second, governments (Liberal and Labor) and regulators who have spent the past 30 years creating and cultivating an oligopoly in Australia in financial services need to seriously reconsider.  Barriers need to be imposed on large financial institutions to reduce their ability to user their existing market power to compete.  This may include allowing international institutions into the market and creating an “un-level” playing field so new FinTech players such as Raiz, which can fill some of the gaps left as advisors leave the market.  I am talking my own book here. Thirdly, in certain areas of the financial system, people must participate; banking, insurance and superannuation are three of the most obvious. These institutions have guaranteed markets, especially superannuation, where every working Australian is a conscript, not a volunteer. Any institution that compulsorily gets nearly 10% of your weekly wage needs to operate to an ethical standard that’s the polar opposite of a mafia don. There can be no excuses. People who hand over part of their salaries to an industry/retail/public sector/corporate super fund, supposedly to give them some financial security in retirement, should not have to wonder whether that money is being invested in a fiducial manner that considers their best interests. It should be holy writ, and institutions who fail to do should feel the full force of the law. If the Royal Commission at least achieves that end, then it will have been worthwhile. [caption id="attachment_3236" align="aligncenter" width="300"] George Lucas, Managing Director & CEO of Raiz Invest[/caption] Important Information The information on this website is general advice only. This means it does not take into account any person’s particular investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this article to fully understand the benefits and risk associated with the Raiz product. The information in this website is confidential. It must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person. The information is based on assumptions or market conditions which change without notice. This will impact the accuracy of the information. Under no circumstances is the information to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of deciding about investing in Raiz. Past return performance of the Raiz product should not be relied on for making a decision to invest in Raiz and is not a good predictor of future performance.
The Raiz Philosophy - Investing Small Amounts Regularly
raiz-philosophy

What is the Raiz Philosophy? (Dollar Cost Averaging)

The Raiz Philosophy is to invest small amounts regularly. While this can’t eliminate market uncertainty, the Raiz Philosophy can help manage it, and at the same time help you learn about the markets, build financial confidence or just save and invest in the background of life. This is the well-known investment strategy,
Dollar Cost Averaging. Raiz automates the strategy and does it more frequently, with the average Raiz customer investing at least once a week. By investing small amounts regularly, the Raiz philosophy protects your investments from emotion. If prices go up, you buy fewer of the now more expensive shares and, if they go down, you buy more of the now cheaper shares. It's an automated, disciplined approach to investing for the long term. Studies suggest that losses are twice as powerful, psychologically, as gains, leading this type of investment mindset to be more likely to make the mistake of needlessly selling holdings and switching to cash in a down market. By avoiding the media hype or fear in picking the ‘right time’ through regular contributions, investors can avoid both the euphoric and depressive investment traps. [caption id="" align="alignnone" width="1200"]raiz-protect-investments-from-emotions The Raiz Philosophy protects your investments from emotion[/caption] Although there is no guarantee that our performance will continue, the average Raiz customer has made 10.1% p.a. over the last year and 11.0% p.a. since inception. This is more than $30 a year on a $300 investment (before the $1.25 monthly maintenance fee)*. On average a Raiz customer saves $150 a month with the average balance of a customer is $1,250.  

Warren Buffet recognises the strength of simple investing.

Even Warren Buffet, who is often referred to as the world's greatest investor, recognises the strength of simple investing with ETFs: “Both large and small investors should stick with low-cost index funds.” In 2007, Buffett bet a New York hedge fund $1 million that his simple, low-cost investing strategy would outperform the hedge fund industry over 10 years. And he won.   [caption id="attachment_3492" align="aligncenter" width="300"]savings goal Raiz Savings Goal Feature[/caption]   Stick to your savings plan and invest small amounts regularly, no matter the market condition. By protecting your investments from emotion, the Raiz Philosophy is one of the keys to helping you and our community to better reach your financial goals and enable a healthier balance over the long term. Remember: “The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now.”   Any returns shown or implied in this email are not forecasts and are not reliable guides of future performance.   Video - How Raiz Protects your investments from Emotion [embed]https://d2mhoisd9uf1g8.cloudfront.net/Raiz_InvestmentFromEmotion_FINAL(music).mp4[/embed]    

Don’t have the Raiz App?

Download it for free in the App store or the Webapp below:
[caption id="attachment_3372" align="aligncenter" width="351"]download-raiz-app Click to download the Raiz app[/caption]
  Important Information The information on this website is general advice only. This means it does not take into account any person’s particular investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this article to fully understand the benefits and risk associated with the Raiz product. The information in this website is confidential. It must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person. The information is based on assumptions or market conditions which change without notice. This will impact the accuracy of the information. Under no circumstances is the information to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of deciding about investing in Raiz. Past return performance of the Raiz product should not be relied on for making a decision to invest in Raiz and is not a good predictor of future performance.
Raiz Kids: Automatic Savings for your Child
raiz-kids Raiz Kids is a simple way to save and invest small amounts regularly for your children/grandchildren. We understand that life gets busy, life gets messy, especially when you have little ones. For the parents and grandparents in our Raiz community, we know it is not simple to get started on a savings fund for your kids.  

What is Raiz Kids?

Raiz Kids is a simple way to save and invest for your children and/or dependents who are under the age of 18. Raiz Kids is not a separate account for your child. Instead, Raiz Kids sits within your current Raiz account as a feature in the menu. Just like your main Raiz balance, you can invest your spare change from everyday purchases, set up a recurring or lump sum deposit towards you and your chosen Raiz Kid(s).
[caption id="" align="alignnone" width="1200"]raiz-invest-small-amounts. Turn your spare change into investments for your child's future.[/caption]  

How does it work?

Raiz Kids works by using your pre-existing Raiz account. Through the App on your mobile or desktop, you can select the portion of your balance that goes towards the Raiz Kids saving goals. At any time, you can split the portion of your current balance to Raiz Kids. Raiz Kids will then equally split among the dependents you have added. raiz-kids For example, if you have selected 50% of your total balance to go towards your Raiz Kids and your balance is $1000, then $500 of it will go towards your Raiz Kids goals. If you then put in a $10 recurring deposit, 50% of this ($5) will also go towards the Raiz Kids goals. Once your Raiz Kids reach the age of 18, they are then able to open their own Raiz Account, with the option of having these funds transferred into their account. Otherwise, the funds will remain within your account until you request a transfer. [caption id="attachment_3371" align="aligncenter" width="245"]raiz-kids-mobile Raiz Kids can be transferred when your child turns 18.[/caption]  

Why use Raiz Kids?

With Raiz Kids, you can apply the same Raiz philosophy of investing small amounts regularly, watching it grow for you and your children in the background of life. Learn to save and invest without affecting your lifestyle by automatically saving and investing small amounts for your kids in the background of life with Raiz! Join the award winning app and recent finalist of 'Best Tech Innovation' for Raiz Kids in the Finder Awards 2018!  

Don’t have the Raiz App?

Download it for free in the App store or the Webapp below: [caption id="attachment_3372" align="aligncenter" width="351"]download-raiz-app Click to download the Raiz App[/caption]   You can find out more about Raiz Kids on our Raiz FAQs Read more about our other features: Raiz Rewards  

Articles in the Media:

Noel Whittaker (Sydney Morning Herald, The Age, Brisbane Times) - 'Raiz (previously Acorns) launches micro-investment for kids' Finder - 'Micro-investing app Raiz (previously Acorns) launches ‘Raiz Kids’ feature' Mamamia - 'The app that will invest your money without you having to do a thing.'   Important Information The information on this website is general advice only. This means it does not take into account any person’s particular investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this article to fully understand the benefits and risk associated with the Raiz product. The information in this website is confidential. It must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person. The information is based on assumptions or market conditions which change without notice. This will impact the accuracy of the information. Under no circumstances is the information to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of deciding about investing in Raiz. Past return performance of the Raiz product should not be relied on for making a decision to invest in Raiz and is not a good predictor of future performance.
Raiz Security: Strengthens Financial Security and Compliance with AI Cybersecurity
raiz security Versive, Inc., an award-winning AI-based cybersecurity company, today announced that Raiz Invest Limited (Raiz), a mobile first micro-investment platform based in Australia, is using the Versive Security Engine (VSE) to help protect sensitive customer data and comply with financial regulations.   Raiz provides customers an easy way to regularly invest either small or large amounts in one of six portfolios of varying risk levels. The company has 164,000 active customers in Australia, and approximately $200 million in funds under management, growing at over 20 percent each quarter.   As a fast-growing financial company, Raiz wanted to increase its level of security. The company already offers bank-level security to consumers through the app to ensure customer data is held securely. In addition, Raiz recently listed on the Australian Stock Exchange and VSE is a critical component of their compliance with financial regulations. Partnering with Versive was a key step in achieving these goals.   The Versive Security Engine is built on a proprietary machine-learning platform that enables it to identify subtle patterns across massive volumes of data. VSE automatically exposes the activities that all adversaries must engage in to accomplish their mission: internal reconnaissance, collection and exfiltration. This strategic framework significantly reduces false positives so that VSE delivers only a handful of high-fidelity ThreatCases per week so that Raiz’s cybersecurity team can focus on defeating the most serious threats before damage is done.  
  • Continuous situational awareness: Raiz’s highest priority is protecting its customers’ information, data and money. VSE provides continuous situational awareness inside customer network and detects internal and external adversaries regardless of what new tools, tactics or exploits they use.
  • The power of AI: VSE uses AI to automatically uncover the required chain of potential threat activity that separates the signal—the real risks to Raiz’s business and customer information—from normal network noise.
  • Increasing consumer confidence: With VSE running seamlessly behind the scenes, customers can invest securely with Raiz, knowing the company is proactively hunting for potential threats and shutting them down before damage is done.
  [caption id="attachment_3455" align="aligncenter" width="1214"]Versive Versive Security Engine[/caption]   Joe Polverari, CEO of Versive, said: “Hackers and other bad actors have the time and resources to successfully find an entry point into your network. Financial services companies like Raiz understand that securing their customer’s information is of utmost importance. That’s why VSE is the critical missing piece in a company’s security portfolio, delivering the most dangerous threats that are already within the network so that security teams know what to focus on to avoid breaches.”   George Lucas, CEO and managing director of Raiz, said: “As our company grows quickly, we are tasked with maintaining both our level of service and the sacred trust of safeguarding customers’ data and money. The Versive Security Engine ensures that we are on the cutting edge of cybersecurity because it is one the most sophisticated technologies to protect our customers and investors from data breaches.” [caption id="attachment_2977" align="aligncenter" width="300"] George Lucas, Managing Director and CEO of Raiz[/caption]   Learn more about Raiz Security on our website.  

Articles in the Media:

Australian FinTech  - 'Raiz chooses Versive’s AI-powered cybersecurity solution to strengthen financial security and compliance' Finextra - 'Raiz selects Versive AI to protect customer data' Adviservoice - 'Raiz chooses Versive’s AI-powered cybersecurity solution to strengthen financial security and compliance' FinTech Business - 'Raiz Invest shores up cybersecurity' Security Brief - 'Raiz chooses AI-powered cybersecurity solution for financial security and compliance' Financial Standard - 'Raiz beefs up security with AI'   Important Information The information on this website is general advice only. This means it does not take into account any person’s particular investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this article to fully understand the benefits and risk associated with the Raiz product. The information in this website is confidential. It must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person. The information is based on assumptions or market conditions which change without notice. This will impact the accuracy of the information. Under no circumstances is the information to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of deciding about investing in Raiz. Past return performance of the Raiz product should not be relied on for making a decision to invest in Raiz and is not a good predictor of future performance.
Meet the brains behind Raiz Invest research and insights
How Australia’s #1 Investment App use insights and research into the millennial audience to inform strategy and grow tools for finance education Raiz Invest Limited, the mobile-first micro investing platform, improving the financial confidence for over 164,000 Australians, is strategically using research and insights to continuously garner understanding and awareness of their customer needs, with the help of Dr. Jake An, Raiz Invest Research Phd and in conjunction with major Sydney Universities. [caption id="attachment_3419" align="aligncenter" width="300"] Dr. Jake An - Research & Development at Raiz Invest[/caption] Dr. Jake An applies his PhD theories to Raiz customers to improve the user experience and is now the brains behind the continuing research program of Raiz. His role is to merge his two passions, academia and research applying them to real world of financial literacy and behaviour. Working with Raiz since 2016, Jake identifies business problems and works directly with academics around the world – including Australia, Israel and Oxford University in the UK - to help solve them.   In a true success story, Jake came to Australia from Korea at age 11 and taught himself English, via economic and business text books. Jake has since hard-wired his brain for analysis since arriving in Australia. This passion for business and research led him to Raiz where he now works to dissect consumer behaviours to inform product development helping Australians become more financially savvy and set themselves up for the future. He believes that the critical element in furthering the growth of the FinTech industry in Australia and beyond, is tapping into the power of online word-of-mouth content.   Through his PHD, whilst at UNSW, Jake conducted research on the effectiveness of a company crafting the word-of-mouth message for a customer, rather than relying on customers to craft the message on their own. The research provides substantive marketing insights in terms of how FinTech companies can better design sharable word-of-mouth content, to generate greater customer referrals on digital platforms and create social benefits.   Managing director, George Lucas, said: “Jake needed a real-world test of his theories to complete his research and reached out to Raiz for assistance. He was instantly a hit and began working with Raiz to shift the company from a sale-oriented word-of-mouth (WOM) approach to a story-oriented WOM approach. Today, it’s an approach that’s borne great success for Raiz. From someone whose business career started when he requested his aunty to send him shoes from Korea which he could sell at Westfield Blacktown for a profit, to an expert in exploring the concept of word of mouth marketing to shape the Raiz brand, his story is one to call out in the finance industry.   The research is now a prime example of how data can empower customers by creating social benefits. The key benefit being that Raiz has now empowered customers to increase their personal influence and help others improve their financial confidence too. He is a motivation for millennials looking to educate themselves in finance.”   Jake is also informing Raiz’s business strategy and growing the brand through his application of concepts around pragmatic learning theories and how they can be applied to finance education through insights and research – a key element of the Raiz Invest platform today.   The work from Jake is a clear example of how education into the benefits of sound finance behaviours and the finance sector has contributed to building one of Australia’s most successful start-ups, who are using insights to understand the millennial audience to inform their strategy and continue to grow the brand as a tool for finance education.   The research conducted is currently under review with the Journal of Marketing, the leading international peer-reviewed academic journal in marketing and is also a finalist for Best Communications Campaign in the Australian FinTech Awards. See our other blogs - 'New research on money issues by Raiz'  

Media Coverage:

Adviser Voice - 'Meet the brains behind Raiz Invest research and insights' Australian FinTech - 'Meet the brains behind Raiz Invest research and insights'   Important Information The information on this website is general advice only. This means it does not take into account any person’s particular investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this article to fully understand the benefits and risk associated with the Raiz product. The information in this website is confidential. It must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person. The information is based on assumptions or market conditions which change without notice. This will impact the accuracy of the information. Under no circumstances is the information to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of deciding about investing in Raiz. Past return performance of the Raiz product should not be relied on for making a decision to invest in Raiz and is not a good predictor of future performance.
Raiz Invest Super: Bringing Superannuation to your mobile phone

Set up Raiz Invest Super: 30 second walkthrough

Mobile is key in today’s world. The Raiz app is the leading investment app in Australia that is completely digital and mobile-first. We have introduced
Raiz Invest Super which is fully integrated into the Raiz app. [caption id="attachment_3391" align="aligncenter" width="300"]raiz-super-app Raiz Invest Super is fully integrated into the Raiz app.[/caption] Raiz Invest Super is designed for a mobile world and the app is all you need to sign up, rollover and view your Superannuation in the palm of your hand.

Below is a quick video on how Raiz Invest Super has made it a simple and easy process to sign up on your mobile phone.

[embed]http://d2mhoisd9uf1g8.cloudfront.net/Raiz%20Super%20Walkthrough_Upload.mp4[/embed]

40% of Australians don’t know how much money is in their own Super. Do you?

Raiz Invest Super will allow you to check and rollover your other existing funds, if you choose, in just a few minutes on your mobile phone. The more connected you feel to your future, the more stress-free you can feel today. Invest in yourself today and connect to your future with Raiz Invest Super. [caption id="attachment_3395" align="aligncenter" width="300"]raiz-super-rollover View your existing Super fund balances with SuperMatch in the Raiz app[/caption]  

How do I sign up?

Simply log into your Raiz App and go to 'Raiz Super' in the menu. [caption id="attachment_3398" align="aligncenter" width="300"]raiz-super-menu Tap 'Raiz Super' in the App menu[/caption]  

Don’t have the Raiz App?

Download it for free in the App store below: [caption id="attachment_3372" align="aligncenter" width="351"]download-raiz-app Click to download the Raiz App[/caption]   You can find out more about Raiz Super on our Raiz Super FAQs   Important Information The information on this website is general advice only. This means it does not take into account any person’s particular investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this article to fully understand the benefits and risk associated with the Raiz product. The information in this website is confidential. It must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person. The information is based on assumptions or market conditions which change without notice. This will impact the accuracy of the information. Under no circumstances is the information to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of deciding about investing in Raiz. Past return performance of the Raiz product should not be relied on for making a decision to invest in Raiz and is not a good predictor of future performance.
July 2018
Investing in Stocks with Dividends – Distribution for FY 2019
All Raiz Portfolios pay out dividends from our ETF providers. Eager to know when your next dividends will be paid? Check out the dates below. Last financial year, Raiz paid out over $3.9M in dividends back to our users.  

What is a Dividend?

As well as gains on market returns from investing, dividends (or distributions) is money paid by a company back to you, their shareholder, out of its profits. Raiz users choose to invest in one of our six investment portfolios, that comprises a mix of nine different exchange traded funds (ETF). The underlying stocks of these ETFs which make up the Raiz portfolios pay dividends from time to time. The ETF provider pays these dividends out, quarterly or twice yearly.  All dividends received by Raiz will be automatically re-invested back into your Raiz investment account, and your chosen portfolio. See our blog on
What is an ETF and how they differ When they are paid out will depend on what portfolio you are on. You will start to see these dividends appear in your account. Below is a schedule on when we expect dividends to be paid by the ETFs accordingly for the financial year ending 2019.   Note: These are estimated timings based from last year’s payment schedule that will change. Please refer to each ETF provider’s website for more details on exact dates when made available.   

A quick summary on each ETF payout:

  • AAA (Cash) pays monthly
  • IVV (S&P 500) pays quarterly
  • IEU (S&P Europe 350) pays twice yearly
  • STW (S&P 200) pays quarterly
  • RCB (Corp. Bond) pays quarterly
  • IAF (Composite Bond) pays quarterly
  • ETHI (Sustainability) – pays twice yearly
  • RARI (Responsible Investment) pays twice yearly
  • IAA (S&P Asia 50) pays twice yearly
  Important Information The information on this website is general advice only. This means it does not take into account any person’s particular investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this article to fully understand the benefits and risk associated with the Raiz product. The information in this website is confidential. It must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person. The information is based on assumptions or market conditions which change without notice. This will impact the accuracy of the information. Under no circumstances is the information to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of deciding about investing in Raiz.   Past return performance of the Raiz product should not be relied on for making a decision to invest in Raiz and is not a good predictor of future performance.
How To Get A Higher Tax Refund with Tax Deductions
by John Liston - Nixer For some, the tax season is a time people look forward to, having paid their taxes all year and are looking to get a nice refund to compensate for all the tax deductible expenses they have paid throughout the year. There are a few new changes in legislation that can help the everyday Australian get some well-earned tax relief. Deductible expenses depend on your industry; however, a general rule is that if your expenses have a direct correlation with earning your income, then you can claim it as a tax deduction.  Then there is also your contribution to superannuation marginal rate, however a tax of 15% will be applied in the superannuation fund on these contributions. Click here to see our article on personal super contributions.  

Mobile Phone - tax deductions

If you use your mobile phone to make work calls, text messages or use the data for work purposes, then you can make a claim. To substantiate the claim, you will need to have a record that justifies the work-related percentage of your mobile phone expenses that you intend to . Please note that you are not able to claim mobile phone expenses if your employer reimburses you or pays your bill. [caption id="attachment_3296" align="alignleft" width="640"] Mobile Phone Deductions[/caption]

 

Motor Vehicle - tax deductions

You can make a claim for work related travel (and vehicle expenses provided they meet the eligibility criteria, such as keeping a log book or a log of work related kms. An important point to note here is that you can’t claim travel from work to home or vice versa. Click here to refer to our help section for more information on this. [caption id="attachment_3303" align="alignleft" width="640"] Motor Vehicle Deductions[/caption]    

Ensure your health insurance is at the correct level.

If your income is $90,000 as a single adult or $180,000 for a family and you don’t have private health insurance, then you will be required to pay the Medicare Levy Surcharge (MLS). The MLS is at least 1% of your adjusted income and basic private health insurance is usually less than 1% of your income. Based on this information, it could be cheaper for you to take out private health insurance instead of paying the Medicare levy surcharge. Have a look into what private health insurance is relevant to your circumstances and then work out if it would be cheaper for you to have it than not have it. [caption id="attachment_3304" align="alignleft" width="640"] Have a look into what private health insurance is relevant to you.[/caption]  

 

Income protection insurance  - tax deductions

Income Protection Insurance is an insurance that will replace your income if you are unable to work due to injury or sickness. One of the benefits of having Income Protection Insurance is that it is Tax Deductible if it covers your regular income!  

Claim your donations  - tax deductions

The ATO allows people to claim a tax deduction for any donations given to a deductible gift recipient (DGR)! You are allowed to claim a tax deduction for a gift if it meets the following conditions:
  • The gift must be to a DGR
  • The gift must be money or property
  • The gift must be a gift, which basically means you receive nothing in return
Click here for more information [caption id="attachment_3305" align="alignleft" width="640"] Charity & Donation deductions[/caption]  

______________________________

About Author:

Want your tax done in less than 10 minutes? Head to nixer.com.au, enter your details and Nixer will do the rest. Nixer is Australia's most innovative online tax agent, offering a unique online tax experience built for Raiz users. Plus as a Raiz user, you receive a special $10 discount on your tax return and $5 invested back into Raiz account when you lodge. Please check your emails for this offer or find Nixer through Raiz Rewards as you must sign-up through your unique link or code. Every tax return is carefully reviewed by Nixer's team of qualified accountants to check for accuracy and to help you find extra deductions.   Important Information The information on this website is general advice only. This means it does not take into account any person’s particular investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this article to fully understand the benefits and risk associated with the Raiz product. The information in this website is confidential. It must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person. The information is based on assumptions or market conditions which change without notice. This will impact the accuracy of the information. Under no circumstances is the information to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of deciding about investing in Raiz.   Past return performance of the Raiz product should not be relied on for making a decision to invest in Raiz and is not a good predictor of future performance.
Raiz Rewards: Cash-forward is the new cashback

Raiz Rewards

What is Raiz Rewards?

Raiz Rewards is our cashback or rather “cash-forward” loyalty program, accessed on the Raiz
mobile app or website. We’ve transformed loyalty by giving you the opportunity to earn cashback with some of your favourite brands. You shop online as normal and the retailer you shop at automatically invest a Raiz cash reward back into your Raiz account just because you made a purchase. Better than loyalty points! Racking up points which you can redeem later have been the traditional model for rewards programs. With Raiz Rewards, just by clicking through our links, you can earn a cash reward on eligible purchases. We’ve partnered with over 100 retailers to fund either a percentage or a fixed dollar cashback which appears into your Raiz Account. Raiz Rewards sets a new standard for rewards programs by helping you invest in your future through your purchasing behaviour. This feature helps customers who shop online to increase their savings, meet their financial goals, and improve financial confidence. In addition to the cashback, we also work with brands individually to provide special promotions for our Raiz customer base. Watch out for our in-App messages. Our list of partners grows month on month as we look to give an array of cashback options. In the June 2018 quarter, our Raiz Rewards partnership portfolio increased by 20%. We also saw 12,000 customer transactions associated with Raiz Rewards and we invested $78,000 of rewards back into our customer’s accounts in the last quarter. An average of $5 a transaction.  

How does it work?

With the click of a button (or tap of a finger), you could be on your way to receiving cashback after making a purchase with one of our partners. Simply go to the Raiz Rewards section in the Raiz Invest app. Find the brand you’d like to purchase from and click the ‘Shop Here’ button. You’ll then be redirected to the partner’s site where you must make your purchase immediately without clicking any other external links.  

Where does the Raiz Reward appear?

The Raiz Reward will typically appear back into your Raiz account within 30 days from the date of purchase. You can view the total amount of Raiz Rewards invested by clicking the History tab in the app. You can see the history of Raiz Rewards invested from specific partners in the partner’s page under the Raiz Rewards tab. Please refer to individual partner terms and conditions before purchasing to understand eligibility requirements and when to expect a Raiz Reward deposited into your account.  

Where does the reward come from?

Brands pay us either a percentage or a fixed dollar amount per sale which we use to cashback to you as a Raiz Reward. Essentially, we use the money to buy shares on your behalf which are invested back into your portfolio.  

What brands do we partner with?

We partner with many local and international brands across a variety of categories in our Raiz Rewards section. We currently have partners in fashion, food, travel, tech and more. We’re also constantly onboarding new partners so be sure to check the app and any communications about new partners. This means more opportunities for more cashback into your Raiz account. Raiz Rewards

Start earning cashback through Raiz Rewards now in the Raiz mobile app or web app.

[caption id="attachment_3372" align="aligncenter" width="351"]download-raiz-app Click to download the Raiz App[/caption]

Articles in the Media:

'Shop Smarter' - Whimn   Important Information The information on this website is general advice only. This means it does not take into account any person’s particular investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this article to fully understand the benefits and risk associated with the Raiz product. The information in this website is confidential. It must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person. The information is based on assumptions or market conditions which change without notice. This will impact the accuracy of the information. Under no circumstances is the information to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of deciding about investing in Raiz. Past return performance of the Raiz product should not be relied on for making a decision to invest in Raiz and is not a good predictor of future performance.
#cash reward #cash rewards #cashback #loyalty #raiz reward #raiz rewards #rewards
Raiz Super is out now on the Raiz App

Raiz Super is now available! 

You are now able to invest in the same six Raiz portfolios for your superannuation as you would for your investment account. Just like a bank account or your Raiz account, superannuation is your money. That's why we want you to feel confident and connected to your future, enabling you to view all your investments in one place, on your mobile phone. [caption id="attachment_3391" align="aligncenter" width="300"]raiz-super-app Raiz Invest Super is fully integrated into the Raiz app.[/caption]  

Check it out on the latest version of the Raiz App.

[caption id="attachment_3258" align="aligncenter" width="351"](Please tap this on your mobile phone) (Please tap this on your mobile phone)[/caption]

Fees?

Our ambition is to give you an easy and affordable way to invest and build wealth for your future. Raiz Invest Super fees place it in the bottom 25% or lowest quartile for accumulation superannuation funds on the market (based on a SuperRatings review of over 440 superannuation funds). Please refer to the product disclosure statement for more detail.  

Do I have to roll over?

No, this is up to you. You have the choice to just open a Raiz Invest Super Account and make employer and personal contributions, without rolling over other Super fund balances. If you would like to combine your Superannuation (and it’s not compulsory to do so), Raiz Super can run a SuperMatch search via the App in just a couple of minutes, giving you the choice to select which Super Funds you would like to consolidate by rolling into Raiz Invest Super. [caption id="attachment_3395" align="aligncenter" width="300"]Raiz Super can run a SuperMatch search via the App Raiz Super can run a SuperMatch search via the App[/caption]  

Do I have to select the same portfolio as my non-Super Raiz Invest?

No, you are able to select a different portfolio to your non-Super Raiz account. Raiz constructs six diversified portfolios (including a Socially Responsible option) with the help from the Nobel Prize winning economist and father of Modern Portfolio Theory, Dr. Harry Markowitz.  

How do I join?

To join, download the latest version of the app. Go from the menu > Raiz Super to get started! Below is a 30 second walk through on how to sign-up and roll over your existing funds (if you choose to).
[embed]https://d2mhoisd9uf1g8.cloudfront.net/Raiz%20Super_Video.mp4[/embed]   Thank you again for your ongoing support. We look forward to your feedback on Raiz Super through support@raizinvest.com.au or 1300 754 748, as we strive to continue improving the financial confidence of our Raiz community.  

Articles in Media:

Investor Daily - 'Raiz Invest enters superannuation market' Super Review - 'Raiz Invest adds super feature to wealth app'   Important Information The information on this website is general advice only. This means it does not take into account any person’s particular investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this article to fully understand the benefits and risk associated with the Raiz product. The information in this website is confidential. It must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person. The information is based on assumptions or market conditions which change without notice. This will impact the accuracy of the information. Under no circumstances is the information to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of deciding about investing in Raiz. Past return performance of the Raiz product should not be relied on for making a decision to invest in Raiz and is not a good predictor of future performance.
Raiz: Money issues creating strain in the bedroom
money-issues New research on money issues by Raiz Invest Limited, the mobile-first micro investing platform, improving financial confidence for over 160,000 Australians, has found that financial stress is having a negative impact on the sex lives and wellbeing of millennial Australians. The research found that men are more likely to believe that financial stress has a negative effect on their sex life than women, whereas women feel the impacts on their wellbeing. Almost one in 10 (nine per cent) admitted they would sacrifice their relationship for financial confidence. Previous research conducted by Raiz found that money issues are a significant cause of stress in young people.   The survey identified the differences in financial stress on men vs. women. It also looked at confidence levels of 1,000 respondents when it came to money issues, debunking many of the myths around financial security along the way.  

Women more financially stressed than men

 The findings revealed that 42 per cent of women often / always felt financially stressed, compared to just 28 per cent of men. Women felt this stress impacting their wellbeing, stating the regular side effects of financial pressures included sleepless nights (65 per cent), depression (64 per cent), and illness (45 per cent). Raiz Invest managing director, George Lucas, said: “We hope taking active steps to managing personal finances, like using the Raiz app should be empowering. As financial confidence increases, we hope to see the negative wellbeing impacts diminish. This year, we’ve already seen women account for 41 per cent of new Raiz investors. We hope to see this number increase year on year to contribute to lower levels of financial stress currently evident amongst young women.”  

Male sex life impacted by financial stress 

Despite women being more financially stressed, men are more likely to believe that financial stress has a negative effect on their sex life, with a third of male respondents telling us this has an impact. There were also clear differences in attitudes toward financial stresses and sexual sacrifices – with women (three out of ten) much more likely to give up regular sex than men (28 per cent vs. 16 per cent) to achieve financial security. “Not surprisingly, financial stress has a differing burden on men and women in their everyday lives. There is still education that needs to be done when it comes to managing expenses, savings and investments, with platforms like Raiz empowering customers to increase financial confidence and hopefully reduce financial stresses. Raiz understands that personal finances can be difficult to manage and plan, which is why our platform aims to automate the process to work in the background of life to improve savings/investing and manage expenses and hopefully improving other parts of their life that don’t really need to be sacrificed” Lucas said.  

Millennials more confident about their financial future

Despite the finding on stresses related to money issues the research found that 42 per cent of respondents are confident with their current financial status. Lucas added: “The preconception that millennials think they will never own a house needs to start changing. We are seeing a significant trend of millennials making smart finance decisions by investing and building wealth for their futures, particularly with the research revealing that young people are feeling more confident about achieving their financial goals in future.” See more on our blog: 'Is the Great Australian Dream still a reality?' To learn more about Raiz Invest and Raiz Invest Super visit www.raizinvest.com.au.

Media Coverage:

  Important Information The information on this website is general advice only. This means it does not take into account any person’s particular investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this article to fully understand the benefits and risk associated with the Raiz product. The information in this website is confidential. It must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person. The information is based on assumptions or market conditions which change without notice. This will impact the accuracy of the information. Under no circumstances is the information to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of deciding about investing in Raiz.   Past return performance of the Raiz product should not be relied on for making a decision to invest in Raiz and is not a good predictor of future performance.
#raiz #saving #study #wealth
Superannuation Product Update - Raiz Invest Super
superannuation raiz invest super ASX Release 9 July 2018 - Business Update

Superannuation –  New Product Update 

In line with Raiz Invest Limited (“Raiz” or “the Company”) (ASX:RZI) strategy to bring new innovative financial solutions and products to customers, Raiz has now successfully completed beta testing of the Raiz Invest Super product. It plans to officially launch this on 16 July 2018. The strategy of introducing a superannuation product was outlined in Raiz’s Prospectus dated 9 May 2018. Raiz Invest Super has been designed to help Australians build wealth for retirement in a simple and transparent manner. The superannuation feature will be fully integrated into the existing Raiz app post its launch. Read our previous blog
- Why your Super is still Important when you’re Young Raiz has a large millennial customer base and has achieved over 500,000 customer sign-ups (as at 9 July 2018) putting it in a unique position to market Raiz Invest Super using its own internal online channels.  Raiz customers are highly engaged with the current Raiz product, with more than 80% of users making an investment in the past four weeks. Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director of Raiz, Mr. George Lucas said, “We continue to execute on our stated strategy of growing our active customer base by bringing new innovative financial solutions and products to customers. This superannuation product was developed in response to customer demand for an engaging, affordable superannuation investment. Pleasingly, our offering will sit within the lowest quartile of fees for accumulation superannuation funds in the Australian market. Raiz Invest Super will charge a fee of around $425 on balances of $50,000 to account holders, on an annual basis, placing it in the bottom 25% or lowest quartile for accumulation superannuation funds on the market. The product also helps address some of the key issues identified in the recent Productivity Commission draft report into superannuation – such as the multiplicity of super accounts and lost super by simplifying how customers engage with their superannuation. “Customers will find that growing their savings and achieving financial confidence does not have to be a complicated or daunting process. We continue to focus on improving financial confidence in investing and saving money within our customer base as well as to potential customers”, added Mr. Lucas. [caption id="attachment_3165" align="aligncenter" width="641"]fee in lowest quartile for accumulation superannuation funds New superannuation product fee will be in the lowest quartile for accumulation superannuation funds on the market[/caption]

Raiz Rewards Update

The Raiz Rewards feature assists customers who shop online to increase their savings while they shop, by receiving a loyalty cash back into their Raiz Account from participating brands. An additional feature of the product is that brands can also offer special promotions to the Raiz customer base. In the June quarter, Raiz Rewards continued to grow its brand partnership portfolio, increasing the number of partners by over 20%. Raiz customers can now receive rewards with more than 115 brands including BWS, Apple, AirBNB, Woolworths Online, and STA Travel. [caption id="attachment_3166" align="aligncenter" width="573"]Raiz Rewards brands june Some Brands added over the June quarter[/caption] The Company has seen 12,000 customer transactions associated with Raiz Rewards and $78,000 of rewards invested into customer accounts in the last quarter (to 30 June 2018). Raiz customers have shown a willingness to earn dollars as they shop which are invested back into their Raiz accounts rather than loyalty points for redemption sometime in the future. Raiz Invest Super and Raiz Rewards are built into the app’s existing mobile first investment platform. Other features of Raiz’s app include Raiz Kids, a savings tool for children, Carbon Offsetting, and the introduction of a Socially Responsible Investing Portfolio.  

Operational Update

Raiz is pleased to announce that since its ASX listing in June, demand for Raiz’s simple, transparent, and affordable financial services has remained strong. Raiz continues to place in the top 10 apps within financial sections of both the Apple and Google app stores.  In the “free financial” section of the Apple App store, Raiz has a customer star rating of 4.8 and similarly in the Google Play Store it has a customer star rating of 4.5.  Funds under management have increased to $205 million. The average Raiz user has seen their investment portfolio grow by 10 per cent a year in the past 12 months and 11 per cent a year since start in February 2016 (including all fees but not the $1.25 a month maintenance fee).  Based on an average account balance of $1250, this would translate to $110 a year return (after the maintenance fee). The Company recently raised over $15 million from investors as part of its listing. This has provided the company with additional funds to service customers, with a focus on offering new products and innovative financial solutions, such as the Raiz Invest Super product.  

Quarterly Update

Raiz intends to provide a quarterly update for the period ending 30 June 2018, in the week of the 23 July 2018.  This will include performance reports as to growth, customer engagement, and funds under management.  

About Raiz

Raiz Invest Limited (ASX: RZI) is a first of its kind Australian, mobile-led, financial services business offering customers an easy way to regularly invest either small or large amounts, in or outside superannuation, using its micro-investment platform available via the Raiz app or its website. Since launching in 2016, Raiz has achieved solid growth, amassing over 470,000 signups, with 160,000 active monthly customers and $200 million funds under management as at 20 June 2018. Raiz was awarded Australia’s Investment Innovator of the Year at the 2017 and 2018 FinTech Business Awards. For more information: www.raizinvest.com.au   Important Information The information on this website is general advice only. This means it does not take into account any person’s particular investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this article to fully understand the benefits and risk associated with the Raiz product. The information in this website is confidential. It must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person. The information is based on assumptions or market conditions which change without notice. This will impact the accuracy of the information. Under no circumstances is the information to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of deciding about investing in Raiz.   Past return performance of the Raiz product should not be relied on for making a decision to invest in Raiz and is not a good predictor of future performance.
#invest #product #raiz super #superannuation #update
June 2018
5 Habits of Wealthy People
By Phil Usher The difference between rich and wealthy, is that getting rich is just about the accumulation of money. It can come and go, and if someone who’s rich loses their money, they may have trouble regaining that or rebuilding again. When we talk about building wealth, we generally think of numbers or how we can increase our income, how we can invest, or how we can make better decisions based on numbers. But wealthy people are also doing things that aren’t numbers focused. History is full of lotto winners that end up broke in a matter of a few years after winning big, or sports people who are great at what they do but not so much with their money. But for wealthy people, it’s very much a mindset. This blog will go through five things that wealthy people do on a regular basis that make them financially successful. Of course this isn’t a “every millionaire does this” or “do these things for guaranteed wealth”, it’s more a look into consistent behaviours of the most successful and wealthy people.   1. Exercise First up is that they exercise. Generally they’re exercising for at least 30 minutes a day, and they’re doing that around four days per week. It’s not a lot, it’s not a huge commitment, but research shows that people who exercise have much better outcomes in terms of the way that they think, getting clarity in their life, and making decisions. There is tons of research out there on exercise. I’ll let you see what you can find, but exercise is something that wealthy people do constantly. Richard Branson is notorious for kite surfing and jogging. And billionaire owner of the Dallas Mavericks, Mark Cuban says he does 1 hour of cardio 6 or 7 days per week!   2. Read Wealthy people read. A lot of research has come out saying that CEOs, top-level CEOs, are reading on average 60 books per year. 60 books compared to about one or two that everyone else reads. The information that you get from books is unbelievable. It’s something that you can’t access anywhere. The dense information that you can get in your ear through audio books is also an efficient use of time! You can read for half an hour per day while your exercising. That’s health and wealth in one hit! And I’m not necessarily just talking about fiction books either, it’s non-fiction and ways that you can learn to improve your thinking. Do a healthy mix between the two. Bill Gates says that he reads 50 books per year and Warren Buffet says he reads 5 to 6 hours per day!   3. Network. A lot of people say that your network is your net worth. That means that you’re getting exposed to other people and it opens the doors for many other opportunities. You’re not going to be able to build your wealth just by sitting in your back room and keeping to yourself. You’ve got to get out there, you’ve got to get to events, you’ve got to talk people. Some of my biggest sales have come from just going to a networking event, exchanging my card, having some food, and having a beer with a decision maker. Prior to that, I’ve tried cold calling or I’ve tried dropping in and they’re always too busy, but when you get face to face with someone, and they can see what you’re like as a person, that’s when the opportunities can really start to open up. So, get out there and start networking.   4. Mentors Arnold Schwarzenegger says in his book, “There’s no one that is self-made.” Everyone has mentors, everyone has guides, everyone has coaches, advisors. Find your mentors, find people who’ve been there and done that with that experience. It doesn’t necessarily have to be face to face, that’s ideal, but I understand that it can be limiting. For me growing up, I had my father as a mentor, but looking beyond that, in terms of building wealth, I turned to books. Having those books, having those people that have built billion dollar fortunes, and seeing what decisions they make and how they operate, is what I’ve used as mentoring as well. Ask business owners or investors you look up to. But don’t come out and ask ‘hey can you be my mentor?’ Play it cool. Go for coffee and follow up with a few emails.   5. Gratitude Wealthy people practice gratitude every day. There’s nothing worse than thinking and comparing yourself to others and saying how far you are behind. Instead of saying I don’t have this, be grateful for what you do have. There are plenty of people out there who believe that you are living a version of their best life. So if you’re getting sick and tired of going to work, rather than waking up and saying, “I have to go to work today,” wake up and say, “ I get to go to work today,” because there are plenty of people who are out there struggling that don’t have employment who would like to be in your opportunity and take advantage of what you have. So, practice some gratitude. It changes that way you think, you become a lot more satisfied with life, so you’re not out there chasing the material things. Instead, you’re starting to chase what feeling gratitude allows you to become. By building your mindset, this is the muscle that you need to raise your wealth. Once you’re able to start to doing that, and hone that, then the money part will become easier. It’s probably 80% mindset and 20% process, so by working on your mindset, this will go a long way towards raising your wealth.   Important Information The information on this website is general advice only. This means it does not take into account any person’s particular investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this article to fully understand the benefits and risk associated with the Raiz product. The information in this website is confidential. It must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person. The information is based on assumptions or market conditions which change without notice. This will impact the accuracy of the information. Under no circumstances is the information to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of deciding about investing in Raiz.   Past return performance of the Raiz product should not be relied on for making a decision to invest in Raiz and is not a good predictor of future performance.
#invest #raiz #wealth
May 2018
Why your Superannuation is still Important when you’re Young
superannuation-important-young
Whilst you don’t care about retirement now (we get it, why would you if you’re young?), we can almost guarantee you that one day you probably will. This may happen when you start a family or just when you get older (which also we can pretty much guarantee). So, don’t forget that your Superannuation is still your money, just like it is your money in a bank account or your Raiz account. You have spent time learning to be more financially confident, so it is just as important to understand Superannuation and how to get the most out of it.    

How is your Superannuation funded?

Your employer will pay contributions to your super fund on your behalf. It’s required that your employer pays at least 9.5% of your salary at all times. However, it may be a great idea to explore boosting your super balance even further and letting the power of compound interest do its magic if you can afford it. Like the Raiz Philosophy of investing small amounts regularly, what might be insignificant amounts now, will add-up over your working life and could mean a big difference to your lifestyle upon retirement. Last year, the government announced you can also voluntary contribute on top of the employee guarantee payment further, cash taking the total up to $25,000 per annum and that this contribution will be before tax (check with your advisor or superannuation fund on how this is done). This extra ability to do voluntary contribution rolls forward for 3 years. This means if you didn’t voluntarily contribute this year, your cap rises to $50,0000 the following financial year ($25,000 from first year, and $25,000 from the second year).  

What’s the first step to getting your Super under control? – Consolidate.

Every year, billions of dollars are lost in fees paid to manage and administer your super, mainly due to a lack of consolidating your super. This is because many superannuation funds charge a flat fee for administration. If you’ve had a lot of jobs (casual, part time or full time), you may have all your money sitting in separate funds or lost supers and having to pay flat fees on each fund. Consolidating all these into one super fund could help you save on fees and help you feel more financially confident by managing this money all in one place. Tools such as Raiz Super, once fully launched, can help you search for all your Supers through your TFN and can consolidate them on your behalf.  

Did you know?

  • Australia was one of the few countries to avoid a major recession during the GFC, with some economists believing that Australia’s superannuation system is what helped prevent it.
  • Australian superannuation is the fourth largest asset pool in the world   and totaled approximately $2.6 trillion in 2017.
  • All Superannuation products in Australia, including Raiz Super, are governed by five separate regulatory bodies including Superannuation Complaints Tribunal, Australian Taxation Office, Australian Securities and Investments Commission, Australian Prudential Regulation Authority and the Department of Human Services
 

Why is Super important?

Today, the average person changes jobs ten to fifteen times during his or her career. Future generations are predicted to have this increased to 17 employer changes across five different careers. This means it will be more important than ever to know where your superannuation contributions are going, and how you can make the most out of it for your retirement by reducing the fees you pay now. We know you probably don’t care about retirement now, but you will one day. For this reason, like your bank or Raiz account, your superannuation fund should never be out of sight, or out of mind. It is your money and your funds for living a comfortable future 🙂   Important Information The information on this website is general advice only. This means it does not take into account any person’s particular investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this article to fully understand the benefits and risk associated with the Raiz product. The information in this website is confidential. It must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person. The information is based on assumptions or market conditions which change without notice. This will impact the accuracy of the information. Under no circumstances is the information to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of deciding about investing in Raiz.   Past return performance of the Raiz product should not be relied on for making a decision to invest in Raiz and is not a good predictor of future performance.
Terms & Conditions for entering our Raiz Facebook competition

1. An active Raiz Account must be held (account balance greater than $5). Raiz account holders hold valid accounts as set out in the product disclosure statement found on the website: www.raizinvest.com.au

2. Entries open Thursday 24th May 2018 at 5.30PM and entries close Thursday 31st May 2018 at 5.30PM. To enter, one must comment on the Facebook post within the time frame stated above.

3. Raiz Invest will select five winners with a $100.00 credit investments in their active Raiz Investment Account. These five investments will be selected at Raiz’s discretion.

4.  These five Raiz Account holders will be requested to message us their email and will be notified by email when the credit investment is deposited into their Raiz account by Friday 8th June 2018.

6. The permit number in the format “NSW Permit No. LTPM/17/02522.”

7.  This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with any other third party.

8. By entering this promotion, you agree that we may use entries for future marketing purposes in any media or branding.

9.  The competition is promoted by Raiz Invest Australia Limited, Level 11/2 Bulletin Place Sydney 2000 NSW, 1300 754 748. ABN 26 604 402 815, who is the Authorised Representative of AFSL 434776. The Raiz product is issued in Australia by Instreet Investment Limited (ACN 128 813 016 AFSL 434776) and promoted by Raiz Invest Australia Limited (ACN 604 402 815). A Product Disclosure Statement dated 1st June 2017 for this product is available on the Raiz website and App. A person should read and consider the Product Disclosure Statement in deciding whether or not to acquire and continue to hold interests in the product. The risks of investing in this product are fully set out in the Product Disclosure Statement, and include the risks that would ordinarily apply to investing.

NSW Permit No. LTPM/17/02522

Raiz Invest announces Public Offering
image


Media Release

10 May 2018

Raiz Invest Limited (“Raiz” or “the Company”, formerly known as Acorns Grow Australia), Australia’s first mobile-led investing platform, today announced the lodgement of its prospectus for the Company’s public offering  to raise over $15 million from investors.


The offering, which is fully underwritten, will provide current Raiz customers with priority access, while also allowing institutional and retail investors the opportunity to participate.  Shares will be issued at $1.80, valuing the company at approximately $119 million. The offer is expected to close on 1 June 2018 with official listing targeted for 21 June 2018.


Raiz is a first of its kind Australian, mobile-led, financial services business offering customers an easy way to regularly invest either small or large amounts using its micro-investment platform available via the app or the web. Raiz’s model is centred on breaking down the barriers to investing, giving customer’s confidence in their finances and offering products driven by their feedback and needs. Its end-to-end technology platform, including registry, operations, administration, fund management and customer communication, allows Raiz to deliver a superior customer experience and build-out its product portfolio.


Since launching in 2016, Raiz has achieved solid growth, amassing over 440,000 signups, with over 155,000 active monthly customers and over $170 million funds under management. The business most recently changed its name from Acorns Grow Australia to Raiz Invest. It is well known for its ‘Round up’, which allows customers to invest spare change from purchases.


With significant first mover advantage in technology-led financial services and having now established its core micro-investing product feature, together with a loyal and growing customer base, Raiz is well placed to expand its unquie and simple business model both domestically and offshore. Funds from the offer will be used to support the Company’s growth strategy to expand its products and services and also extend its offering offshore, thereby increasing customers.


Managing Director of Raiz, Mr. George Lucas, said, “The public offering of Raiz marks the next step in the growth of the business as we seek to expand our customer base in Australia, offering customer-led innovative products, such as superannuation, and expand into South-East Asia.  Raiz has improved financial literacy,  financial inclusion and broadened capital market participation in Australia and this is an attractive proposition for South-East Asian markets.


“As part of the offering, we are excited to offer current customers the opportunity to invest and participate in the future growth of our business.


“In the more than two years that Raiz has been in operation, it has received overwhelming positive support and feedback from its customers about its affordable service, reflected in the strong growth in active customers and funds under management that we have achieved.


“Through technology, we are breaking down the barriers that have previously prevented many Australian’s from saving and investing. This helps our customers to build confidence in managing their own finances as well as increasing their financial literacy. Our philosophy of investing small amounts regularly has resonated with our customer base. Raiz makes this happen automatically, in the background of life, reducing some of the stress associated with managing your finances.”


Raiz’s competitive advantage is that it leverages technology to offer and facilitate the provision of affordable financial services and products at a lower cost, with greater efficiency, than a traditional financial services business. The business is able to cost-effectively tap into Australia’s huge appetite for financial services.


Timetable Dates

Lodgement of Prospectus with ASIC

Wednesday, 9 May 2018

Offer opens

Thursday,  17 May 2018

Offer closes (5pm)

Friday, 1 June 2018

Settlement date

Wednesday,  6 June 2018

Expected commencement of trading on the ASX

Thursday,  21 June 2018

April 2018
Thank you for supporting Raiz


From George Lucas (Managing Director/CEO):

I would like to thank everyone for the support around the name change to Raiz and the associated rebranding. It was an arduous process for us and we still have lots of work to do to ensure you that all the qualities of the old Acorns remain. We also want to ensure that Raiz gives us a platform and opportunity to improve the features of the App and the service we provide to you. I believe becoming an independent Australian company will allow us to achieve these goals.

Finding a unique name in financial services wasn’t easy. We started with a list of over 500 names. From the top 50 names, we did URL searches and found they were all taken. We then looked at the next 50 names, some were taken when we did the URL search, the rest failed when we did trademark searches. Therefore, in the end we needed one that could be uniquely spelt and one we could build our new brand around.

Despite these limitations, we picked Raiz based on the feedback from our community, wanting us to at the foremost continue championing the opportunity to raise your wealth, raise your financial confidence and raise your investment knowledge, all in the background of life.

For those who need a meaning to the word Raiz, it also symbolises the root of a plant, continuing the idea of growth and the importance of having the right foundations to raiz your wealth. For me, it is about ensuring that the team can create a personality around the name which will continue allowing us to enable your financial confidence and wellbeing.

Thanks again for your support and feedback - good and bad. Please update the App with the new name and brand by going to the “Updates” section of the app store. Look out for the new releases and more new features coming to your App Store soon!

George Lucas
Managing Director/CEO

March 2018

Terms & Conditions for completing our ‘Improving our Community & Brand’ online survey.

1.      An active Acorns Grow Australia Account must be held (account balance greater than $5). Acorns account holders hold valid accounts as set out in the product disclosure statement found on the website: www.acornsau.com.au.

2.      Entries open Sunday, 1st April 2018 at 4pm and entries close Saturday 7th April 2018 at 11.59pm. To enter one must complete in full the ‘Improving our Community & Brand’ within the timeframe stated above and provide the email address on your Active Acorns Grow Australia Investment account at the end of the survey.

3.      To thank you for completing the Survey, Acorns Grow Australia will be giving away five $50.00 credit investments in their active Acorns Grow Australia Investment Account. These five investments will be selected at random.

4.      These five random Acorns Account holders will be notified by email when the credit investments will be deposited into their Acorns account by Saturday, 28th April 2018.

6.      The permit number in the format “ NSW Permit No. LTPM/17/02522 .”

7.      This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with any other third party.

8.      The survey competition is promoted by Acorns Grow Australia Limited, Level 11/2 Bulletin Place Sydney 2000 NSW, 1300 754 748. ABN 26 604 402 815, who is the Authorised Representative of AFSL 434776. The Acorns product will be issued in Australia by Instreet Investment Limited (ACN 128 813 016 AFSL 434776) and promoted by Acorns Grow Australia Limited (ACN 604 402 815). A Product Disclosure Statement dated 1st June 2017 for this product is available on the Acorns website and App. A person should read and consider the Product Disclosure Statement in deciding whether or not to acquire and continue to hold interests in the product. The risks of investing in this product are fully set out in the Product Disclosure Statement, and include the risks that would ordinarily apply to investing.

9.      “Acorns” and “Invest the Change” are registered trademarks of Acorns Grow, Inc.

NSW Permit No. LTPM/17/02522

Terms & Conditions for Tinybeans Giveaway July 2018 1.      An active Raiz Account must be held (account balance greater than $5). Raiz account holders hold valid accounts as set out in the product disclosure statement found on the website: www.raizinvest.com.au 2.      Entries open Wednesday, 18 July 2018 and entries close Sunday 29 July 2018 at 11.59pm. To enter one must create an active Raiz Account with at least one Raiz Kid using the download links in the Giveaway email within the timeframe stated above with an account balance greater than $5. 3.      For being a Tinybeans user and new Raiz user, we will be giving away ten $100.00 credit investments in their active Raiz Investment Account. These ten investments will be selected at random. 4.      These ten random Raiz Account holders will be notified by email when the credit investments will be deposited into their Raiz account by Sunday, 12 August 2018. 6.      The permit number in the format “NSW Permit No. LTPM/17/02522.” 7.      This promotion is sponsored by Tinybeans - https://tinybeans.com/ 8.      The survey competition is promoted by Raiz Invest Australia Limited, Level 11/2 Bulletin Place Sydney 2000 NSW, 1300 754 748. ABN 26 604 402 815, who is the Authorised Representative of AFSL 434776.  The Raiz Invest Australia Fund is issued in Australia by Instreet Investment Limited (ACN 128 813 016 AFSL 434776) a subsidiary of Raiz Invest Limited and promoted by Raiz Invest Australia Limited (ACN 604 402 815).  A Product Disclosure Statement dated 10 April 2018 for this product is available on the Raiz website and App. A person should read and consider the Product Disclosure Statement in deciding whether or not to acquire and continue to hold interests in the product. The risks of investing in this product are fully set out in the Product Disclosure Statement, and include the risks that would ordinarily apply to investing. NSW Permit No. LTPM/17/02522
Investing into an ETF and how do ETFs differ?
 

The Raiz philosophy is to invest small amounts regularly, no matter the market condition, as this strategy can minimise the risk of investing in markets and we believe is one of the keys to having a healthier balance over the long run.

All your investments, whether it be your spare change from round-ups, lump sums or recurring deposits, are invested into one of the 6 diversified portfolios that were constructed with help from the Nobel Prize winning economist and father of Modern Portfolio Theory, Dr. Harry Markowitz.

 

What is a diversified portfolio?

To find the right balance between risk and reward, your money is never invested into one specific share or company. It is instead invested across a bundle of shares or bonds that form one financial product, called an Exchange Traded Fund (ETF).

The Raiz portfolios are made up of a combination of different ETFs that range from cash, bonds, Australian and international shares. Every investment you make will be allocated towards these ETFs.

Watch our video on -
How our Raiz Portfolios are built

Let’s take a deeper look into these ETFs:

The first six are called ‘Large Cap Stocks’

1.      Australia Large Cap Stocks (ASX:STW)

2.      Asia Large Cap Stocks (ASX:IAA)

3.      Europe Large Cap Stocks (ASX:IEU)

4.      US Large Cap Stocks (ASX:IVV)

5.      Australia Social Responsible Large Cap (ASX:RARI)

6.      Global Socially Responsible Large Cap (ASX:ETHI)

 

What are large cap stocks?

Large cap stocks are the biggest companies on their respective country’s stock exchange in terms of market capitalisation – or total dollar value of a company. Companies that fall in this category tend to be in established industries and are major players in their field. Large cap stocks can be a safer option as their earnings may be more consistent than less-established companies, making them more likely to show returns over time.

Examples of Large Cap stocks that your investments can go towards are international shares such as Apple, Google & Microsoft and Australian shares such as Telstra, Westpac & Woolworths.

You can also see all the hundreds of companies that make up these ETFs by searching for the ETF code or the provider from our product disclosure statement.

7.      Australia Government Bonds (ASX:IAF)

Australia Government bonds are viewed as more secured and as less risky investment products than large cap stocks. It differs to stocks as you are instead essentially lending money to the government at an agreed interest rate. The government will then pay the interest and return the money that was lent at maturity. Rather than hold a bond to maturity though, they can also be traded. The risk is therefore tied to the ability of the Australian Government to pay you back both the interest and the money that was lent at the end.

8.      Australia Corporate Bonds (ASX:RCB)

Similar to government bonds, corporate bonds are a way for Australian companies to raise money, by borrowing from you. The business will pay the interest and return the money lent. It can also be traded on an exchange before maturity. The risk is again therefore tied to the ability of the Corporate to pay you back both the interest and the money that was lent at the end.

9.      Australian Money Market (ASX:AAA)

This ETF is invested into the money market, which has the least volatility. The fund focuses on investing in term deposits and high interest accounts offered by banks in Australia.  As these tend to be short dated, the risk that a bank cannot repay both the interest and the money back is low.

 

What are the allocations for the ETFs?

We invest your money in a combination of the above ETFs on a sliding scale depending on how aggressive or conservative you want to be with your investments. Conservative portfolios will have a bigger allocation in bonds & cash, while the more aggressive portfolios will have a bigger allocation in Australian and international shares.

You will be able to find the exact allocations that makes up your portfolio in our product disclosure statement.

Example of allocation for the Aggressive portfolio:
 

How can I keep track?

The Raiz app will give you the daily, monthly and yearly performance of your portfolio. You are also able to keep track of the individual ETF’s performance yourself through the web or via a stock app. Keep in mind though, markets go up and markets go down. Therefore, it is important to look at the long-term big picture and not the daily fluctuations. You can find more in our blog, The Advantages of Dollar Cost Averaging

 

Important Information

The information on this website is general advice only.  This means it does not take into account any person’s particular investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this article to fully understand the benefits and risk associated with the Raiz product.

The information in this website is confidential. It must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person. The information is based on assumptions or market conditions which change without notice. This will impact the accuracy of the information.

Under no circumstances is the information to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of deciding about investing in Raiz.  

Past return performance of the Raiz product should not be relied on for making a decision to invest in Raiz and is not a good predictor of future performance.  
#etf #invest
February 2018
How Interest Rates can Affect Volatility
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After a strong rise in the US market over the last 6 months (nearly 7% in January alone), investors have been caught by surprise due to the strength of recent inflation reports (yep the US economy is doing well), and therefore increased speculation that the US Fed could raise interest rates more aggressively than had been expected. This is the catalyst for the recent fall.

So why does the rise in interest rates affect equity markets?

Company earnings & consumer spending

Equity investors see increasing inflation as an indication that interest rates may push higher, which could lead to a slow down in company earnings and consumer-spending power. As both companies and consumers may need to pay back more on any debts they hold as interest rates increases, rising interests rates may eventually in a year or two slow down the economy and help to balance growing inflation. Equity markets take this into consideration when valuing equities, looking this far into the future.

At the moment though, the fear of rising interest rates in the market is on the back of expected improvements in the global economy. News on the global economy looks set to remain positive in the coming months.

Profit taking

Prior to this sell-off, the US market had not fallen 3 percent from any high in more than a year. Therefore, investors are also seeing this as a catalyst to start some profit taking. This is usual market action and usually referred to as a correction or pull back.

Market Cycles Despite the recent fall, the U.S. stock market has proven remarkably resilient; it routinely has recovered from these short-term events to move higher over longer time periods. This is not to say it will always recover but history shows by staying invested no matter the market conditions, investors can keep their portfolios on track in pursuit of their long-term goals. These market cycles are completely normal, and has still been up over the long-term picture.  
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US Markets have pulled back to November pricing, but is still up over the long-term picture.

Why does this affect Australian Markets?

They say “When the US market sneezes, the rest of the world catches a cold.”

As the US is the world’s biggest economy (for now), good market news from the US is usually good market news for markets globally, including Australia. Bad news from the US also signals vis versa across global markets. A change in the US economy usually has a global effect in most other economies affecting businesses, import/export trades and currencies.

The Australian Stock Exchange (ASX) is typically correlated to the US stock market. You will notice that the opening level of the ASX is often influenced by what the US markets did the previous night. Another consideration is that a large majority of Australian shares are also owned outside of Australia.

However, while we expect Australian markets to follow US market movements, we don’t expect them to fall as much the US markets as they have not risen over the last few months as quickly. While US markets will continue to influence our market, it will still eventually move independently based on both global and local economical factors closer to home.

Please remember markets go up and markets go down. This is completely normal. The Raiz philosophy is to invest small amounts regularly, no matter the market conditions. Stick to your savings plan and these moments could be an opportunity. You can learn more about this from our blog on the advantages of Dollar Cost Averaging here.

Important Information

The information on this website is general advice only.  This means it does not take into account any person’s particular investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this article to fully understand the benefits and risk associated with the Raiz product.

The information in this website is confidential. It must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person. The information is based on assumptions or market conditions which change without notice. This will impact the accuracy of the information.

Under no circumstances is the information to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of deciding about investing in Raiz.  

Past return performance of the Raiz product should not be relied on for making a decision to invest in Raiz and is not a good predictor of future performance.

#interest rates #invest #markets
January 2018
25 Simple Saving Tips for the New Year
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With the new year upon us, it’s easy to say “I will save more this year” but what you might not have brainstormed is “How can I save more this year? What are the practical ways to go about it?” The good news is even small efforts can add up to big savings over time. No matter what you’re saving money for —whether it’s to reach a savings goal, pay off debt faster or plan ahead for a holiday or first home—these simple suggestions will help you get there faster.

With 25 simple suggestions, there is one to suit everyone and to help you stick to your goal or resolutions this year!

1. Create sub-accounts for different savings goals or use your Raiz Account. It’s an easy way to measure your progress and make quick adjustments.

2. Nickname those goals. Research proves this creates an emotional connection that motivates you to save more.

3. Set up automatic recurring investments after payday. You won’t have time to miss the money.

4. Treat yourself to a birthday freebie. Most restaurants, if you tell them it’s your birthday, will give you a little something just for dining with them. The key is signing up early.

5. Raid your drawers for unused gift cards. If you probably won’t put them to good use, re-gift or sell them.

6. Cancel unused subscriptions for magazines, gym memberships, for example.

7. Turn off the tap when you brush your teeth. This can save 5,000L per year, cutting down your water bill.

8. Take shorter showers.

9. Unplug your laptop and other appliances when you aren’t using them. Leaving your computer on all day could add up to hundreds in a year.

10. Convert to low-flush toilets and high efficiently appliances when your current ones need replacing.

11. DIY when it makes sense. (Doing major repairs on your own won’t save you money if you end up having to a pay a pro to fix your shoddy work.)

12. Make a list before hitting the store, and stick to it—and avoid grocery shopping when you’re hungry and more likely to make impulse buys.

13. Buy the floor model for a discount when you’re shopping for big-ticket items like furniture or appliances.

14. Buy last year’s model—especially when you’re shopping for electronics

15. Buy holiday candy, decorations and wrapping paper the day after a major holiday.

16. Borrow. A friend may own a black-tie outfit you can wear to an upcoming wedding.

17. Get books at the library instead of purchasing your own copies.

18. Use generic or store-brand products for everything from cereal to face lotion.

19. Buy everyday items like batteries and bottled water in bulk.

20. Try the lunch menu at your favorite dinner spot.

21. Make your own coffee, saving you anywhere from $1 to $5 per drink.

22. Commit to bringing your lunch just one more day a week.

23. Stock up on wine and liquor the day after a major holiday to score discounts. Those are among the quietest days for liquor stores.

24. Look for other freebies in your city, like yoga classes or one-day workouts in public parks.

25. Volunteer. It’s free and will make you feel good too.

Bonus tip: Use all the features available on Raiz to save and invest (Round-ups & Recurring Investments), manage your finance better (My Finance), save for your kids (Little Raiz), and shop with an investment bonus (Found Money). Happy investing!

Important Information

The information on this website is general advice only.  This means it does not take into account any person’s particular investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this article to fully understand the benefits and risk associated with the Raiz product.

The information in this website is confidential. It must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person. The information is based on assumptions or market conditions which change without notice. This will impact the accuracy of the information.

Under no circumstances is the information to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of deciding about investing in Raiz.  

Past return performance of the Raiz product should not be relied on for making a decision to invest in Raiz and is not a good predictor of future performance.

#resolution #saving #tips
6 ways to improve your credit score with minimal effort
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Bessie Hassan | Money expert at finder.com.au

Whether you have a great credit score, a bad one or you’re confused as to what the numbers actually mean, improving your credit score will shape your financial future for the better. A good credit score can help you get a discount on your home loan or help you secure new finance.

Here are six ways that you can improve your credit score with minimal effort.

1)  Check your credit report

Your credit score is based on the historical borrowing and repayment behaviour listed in your credit report. Checking your credit report on your own won’t have any impact on your credit score. However, if a lender requests your credit report, it may leave a negative mark. This is why you should be careful of how many lenders you approach for a loan, as it will often prompt them to check your report.

Checking your history yourself allows you to see what activities have affected your credit score, giving you a better understanding of what you should and shouldn’t be doing. You might also be able to find any mistakes that have been made by credit reporting bodies and take action to correct them.

2)  Make sure you have a borrowing and repayment history

Having debt doesn’t sound like it would improve your credit score but a completely blank credit report doesn’t assure lenders that you’re a responsible borrower. If you don’t have any loans, it might be a good idea to start using a credit card, even if you only use it to pay for petrol.

3)  Pay your bills on time

Once you have debt, it’s important to pay it off on time. Missed or late payments on credit contracts such as credit cards, personal loans and home loans can negatively affect your credit score. Making the minimum payment on time will show healthy borrowing behaviour.

To make this easier on yourself, set calendar reminders on your phone or computer so that you don’t miss a due date. If you’re sure that you’ll always have enough in your account to pay your bills, try setting up a direct debit to automatically pay the bills when they’re due. Also make sure to let any banks or lenders know your new address if you’re moving. That way, you’ll prevent yourself from missing your bills and having them listed as defaults.

4)  Lower your credit limit

A recent survey from finder.com.au found that two-thirds of Aussies believe that only your credit utilisation ratio (that is, how much of your credit that you’ve actually used) affects your credit score. However, in Australia, only your credit limit is recognised rather than how much you’ve borrowed out of it.

For instance, if your credit card has a $6,000 credit limit and you’ve only borrowed $1,400, the only figure affecting your credit score will be the $6,000. Therefore, it’s a good idea to lower your credit limit to $2,000, or to whatever credit limit is just enough for you.

5)  Consolidate your debt

If you have several loans, consolidating them all into one account can make it easier to manage your repayments. It will also reduce the risk of any negative activity on your credit report and it can help you save on fees and get you a lower interest rate.

6)  Check your credit score regularly

The final way you can actively improve your credit score is to check it regularly. Getting your credit score doesn’t require much effort or time. All you need to access your credit score for free is your email, name, sex, date of birth, driver’s licence and your address.

Once you’ve made an account, checking your credit score is easy. Generally, your credit score will change every month if there is any new activity on your credit report.

Ultimately, improving your credit score comes down to proving that you’re a responsible borrower that can make punctual and regular payments. Ensuring that you borrow within your means and never miss a due date can almost definitely lead to an improved credit score.

Important Information

The information on this website is general advice only.  This means it does not take into account any person’s particular investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this article to fully understand the benefits and risk associated with the Raiz product.

The information in this website is confidential. It must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person. The information is based on assumptions or market conditions which change without notice. This will impact the accuracy of the information.

Under no circumstances is the information to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of deciding about investing in Raiz.  

Past return performance of the Raiz product should not be relied on for making a decision to invest in Raiz and is not a good predictor of future performance.

#acorns #finance #investthechange
November 2017
4 Money Lessons to Teach your Kids
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Bessie Hassan | Money expert at finder.com.au

With the lack of education about personal finance these days, it’s up to parents to teach their kids the value of a dollar. In a world where more and more transactions are taking place digitally, it becomes harder to explain money management without it being confusing or just plain boring for your kids.

However, by keeping it simple and speaking their language, you can set your little ones up for greater financial security. Here are four ways you can teach your kids about good money habits.

1. Make smart money decisions

There are many finance-related decisions and experiences that you can share with your kids to help them understand the value of money. For instance, explaining how you compare different prices at the supermarket and letting your kids find some of the items on your grocery list is an easy way to get them started (and it can cut down the time you spend shopping!).

While you’re at the grocery store, let your kids hand the money to the cashier. You can also get them to count the change to make sure everything adds up. Hopefully, they’ll feel confident enough to do this alone at the school canteen as well.

2. Let them earn pocket money

Giving your kids pocket money is one of the best ways to teach them financial independence. Though you may not want them to slave away doing household chores, you also don’t want them thinking that money grows on trees. Research from finder.com.au has found that 58% of parents who had to work for their pocket money are now giving their kids free handouts.

Each family will have different strategies in regards to how much each chore is worth. To keep your kids motivated to earn more pocket money, help them set a savings goal, whether it be a dollar value or a specific item like a new toy or gadget.

3. Teach them about physical vs digital money

Starting off by giving your kids physical money will help them understand the physical worth of money. However, you do have to explain the concept of digital money too. For instance, you could show them an Internet bill and explain how long you have to work to earn enough money to pay the bill. This helps them become more aware of their everyday actions by understanding the value of work and money.

Along the same lines, equipping your kids with online resources will definitely help them as they grow up in the digital world. This could involve using an online calculator to help them budget for their goals or using a finance app such as Raiz to teach them about the power of long-term investing and compound interest through Little Raiz.

4. Show them the consequences of being financially irresponsible

Despite all these different lessons, sometimes it’s impossible to prevent your kids from getting into trouble as a teen. It’s important to help them out but not to pay off any of their debt for them.

They might have to work extra hard to pay of their debt by doing extra shifts at the local cafe or saying “no” to a new video game. Showing your child that there are consequences to being financially irresponsible will set them up for a better future. It’s better for your kids to learn this when they’re younger rather than ending up thousands of dollars in debt as a young adult.

Talking to your kids about money doesn’t always have to be a burden. With simple lessons and by allowing them to get involved with the family finances, your kids will be feel more enthusiastic and prepared when managing their own money both now and well into the future.

Important Information

The information on this website is general advice only.  This means it does not take into account any person’s particular investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this article to fully understand the benefits and risk associated with the Raiz product.

The information in this website is confidential. It must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person. The information is based on assumptions or market conditions which change without notice. This will impact the accuracy of the information.

Under no circumstances is the information to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of deciding about investing in Raiz.  

Past return performance of the Raiz product should not be relied on for making a decision to invest in Raiz and is not a good predictor of future performance.

#acorns littleacorns investthechange
Four things you may not know about your superannuation (but should)

[ New Product Announcement ]

Following your feedback, we are planning to launch a superannuation product. The superannuation feature will be fully integrated into the existing app, using the current six portfolios when it becomes available in late March 2018. 

For those who are interested or want to be updated on its release, you can 
pre-register here: https://super.Raizinvest.com.au

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By Alison Banney (Finder.com.au)Superannuation isn’t everyone’s cup of tea. Let’s be honest, it’s boring and complicated and it’s something that young Australians won’t need for another 20, 30 or even 40 years. However, your superannuation is likely your largest asset, and while there’s no need to know every word of your fund’s PDS, there are definitely a few things you should know.

 

1. Where your money is invested

Australians are becoming more and more aware of the footprint they’re leaving on our earth. We’re seeing more people use reusable coffee cups, hearing more of our friends and colleagues commit to eating less meat and seeing more people bring their own shopping bags to the grocery store. But what about your super?

Your superannuation is likely to be the largest investment portfolio you’ll ever have and you could be supporting tobacco companies, ammunition manufacturing or coal-seam gas extraction without even knowing it. You should be able to find the details of where your money is going on your super fund’s website, although you may need to do some digging. If you don’t like what you find, don’t hesitate to switch to a fund that aligns with your values.

2. Your insurance cover

If you’re young, healthy and fit you might not consider life insurance as something you need. But believe it or not, you’re almost certainly paying for it through your superannuation. Most super funds will provide you with automatic Death and Total and Permanent Disablement (TPD) cover when you open a policy, and some will also include automatic Income Protection insurance.

These insurance policies are almost always opt-out rather than opt-in, meaning that unless you specifically opt-out of your policy you’ll be paying fees for this cover, whether you want it or not. Have a look at your latest super statement or read your fund’s PDS online to see what insurance you’re paying for, and decide whether it’s right for you.

3. What fees you’re paying

While you’re poking around your latest statement, you should also take a look at how much you’re forking out in fees. You might already know what admin fees you’re paying, but what about the rest? There are also investment fees and a fee for indirect costs (known as the Indirect Cost Ratio) charged to most accounts, and these can vary greatly between funds.

The difference in fees between funds might not seem like a big deal when you’re young, but it can have a huge impact on your superannuation balance by the time you’re ready to retire.

4. How your fund has been performing

Because of the compulsory nature of superannuation, many people think that all super funds perform equally, but this is simply not the case. It’s important to think of your superannuation as one large investment portfolio. It doesn’t guarantee positive returns, it relies on the skills and knowledge of the fund manager to invest in assets that will provide positive returns. And some are better at this than others.

When applied to a balance of $100,000, the performance becomes quite serious. You should be able to find your fund’s portfolio performance figures on its website.

Superannuation is incredibly complex, and it can be overwhelming to try and understand every tiny detail of your fund. Instead, use these four areas as a starting point from where you can learn more about your super.

Please also check out our blog on new rules for super contribution as voluntary contributions may now be tax deductible.

Important Information

The information on this website is general advice only.  This means it does not take into account any person’s particular investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this article to fully understand the benefits and risk associated with the Raiz product.

The information in this website is confidential. It must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person. The information is based on assumptions or market conditions which change without notice. This will impact the accuracy of the information.

Under no circumstances is the information to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of deciding about investing in Raiz.  

Past return performance of the Raiz product should not be relied on for making a decision to invest in Raiz and is not a good predictor of future performance.

#Acorns superannuation #wealth

Terms & Conditions for completing our Acorns Facebook competition.

1. An active Acorns Grow Australia Account must be held (account balance greater than $5). Acorns account holders hold valid accounts as set out in the product disclosure statement found on the website: www.acornsau.com.au.

2. Entries open Wednesday 15th November 2017 at 5PM and entries close Wednesday 22nd November 2017 at 5PM. To enter one must comment on the Facebook post within the time frame stated above.

3. Acorns Grow Australia will be randomly giving away five $100.00 credit investments in their active Acorns Grow Australia Investment Account. These five investments will be selected randomly from valid entries.

4.  These five Acorns Account holders will be requested to message us their email and will be notified by email when the credit investment is deposited into their Acorns account by Wednesday 29th November 2017.

6. The permit number in the format “NSW Permit No. LTPM/17/02522.”

7.  This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with any other third party. 

8. By entering this promotion, you agree that we may use entries for future marketing purposes in any media or branding.

9.  The competition is promoted by Acorns Grow Australia Limited, Level 11/2 Bulletin Place Sydney 2000 NSW, 1300 754 748. ABN 26 604 402 815, who is the Authorised Representative of AFSL 434776. The Acorns product will be issued in Australia by Instreet Investment Limited (ACN 128 813 016 AFSL 434776) and promoted by Acorns Grow Australia Limited (ACN 604 402 815). A Product Disclosure Statement dated 1st June 2017 for this product is available on the Acorns website and App. A person should read and consider the Product Disclosure Statement in deciding whether or not to acquire and continue to hold interests in the product. The risks of investing in this product are fully set out in the Product Disclosure Statement, and include the risks that would ordinarily apply to investing.

10. “Acorns” and “Invest the Change” are registered trademarks of Acorns Grow, Inc. 

NSW Permit No. LTPM/17/02522

October 2017

Terms & Conditions for completing Little Acorns Facebook competition.

1.      An active Acorns Grow Australia Account must be held (account balance greater than $5). Acorns account holders hold valid accounts as set out in the product disclosure statement found on the website: www.acornsau.com.au.

2.      Entries open Wednesday 1st November 2017 at 5pm (AEST) and entries close Wednesday 8th November 2017 at 5pm (AEST). To enter one must comment on the Facebook post within the timeframe stated above.

3.      To celebrate the launch of Little Acorns, Acorns Grow Australia will be giving away five $100.00 credit investments in their active Acorns Grow Australia Investment Account. These five investments will be the comment with the most likes on the Facebook post.

4.      These five Acorns Account holders will be notified by email when the credit investments will be deposited into their Acorns account by Thursday 30th November 2017.

6.      The permit number in the format “NSW Permit No. LTPS/16/08287.”

7.      This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with any other third party. 

8.      The competition is promoted by Acorns Grow Australia Limited, Level 11/2 Bulletin Place Sydney 2000 NSW, 1300 754 748. ABN 26 604 402 815, who is the Authorised Representative of AFSL 434776. The Acorns product will be issued in Australia by Instreet Investment Limited (ACN 128 813 016 AFSL 434776) and promoted by Acorns Grow Australia Limited (ACN 604 402 815). A Product Disclosure Statement dated 1st June 2017 for this product is available on the Acorns website and App. A person should read and consider the Product Disclosure Statement in deciding whether or not to acquire and continue to hold interests in the product. The risks of investing in this product are fully set out in the Product Disclosure Statement, and include the risks that would ordinarily apply to investing.

9.      “Acorns” and “Invest the Change” are registered trademarks of Acorns Grow, Inc. 

NSW Permit No. LTPS/16/08287

Terms & Conditions for completing our ‘Improving our Services’ online survey.

1.      An active Acorns Grow Australia Account must be held (account balance greater than $5). Acorns account holders hold valid accounts as set out in the product disclosure statement found on the website: www.acornsau.com.au.

2.      Entries open Thursday 26th October 2017 at 1.00am and entries close Wednesday 1st November 2017 at 11.59pm. To enter one must complete in full the ‘Improving our Services’ within the timeframe stated above and provide the email address on your Active Acorns Grow Australia Investment account at the end of the survey.

3.      To thank you for completing the Survey, Acorns Grow Australia will be giving away five $50.00 credit investments in their active Acorns Grow Australia Investment Account. These five investments will be selected at random.

4.      These five random Acorns Account holders will be notified by email when the credit investments will be deposited into their Acorns account by Friday 10th November 2017.

6.      The permit number in the format “NSW Permit No. LTPS/16/08287.”

7.      This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with any other third party. 

8.      The survey competition is promoted by Acorns Grow Australia Limited, Level 11/2 Bulletin Place Sydney 2000 NSW, 1300 754 748. ABN 26 604 402 815, who is the Authorised Representative of AFSL 434776. The Acorns product will be issued in Australia by Instreet Investment Limited (ACN 128 813 016 AFSL 434776) and promoted by Acorns Grow Australia Limited (ACN 604 402 815). A Product Disclosure Statement dated 1st June 2017 for this product is available on the Acorns website and App. A person should read and consider the Product Disclosure Statement in deciding whether or not to acquire and continue to hold interests in the product. The risks of investing in this product are fully set out in the Product Disclosure Statement, and include the risks that would ordinarily apply to investing.

9.      “Acorns” and “Invest the Change” are registered trademarks of Acorns Grow, Inc. 

NSW Permit No. LTPS/16/08287

Dealing with Foreign Markets - How Investors Can Utilise Foreign Markets
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By Ben Barlow of UMS Freelance

There are a lot of benefits to diversifying your portfolio and exploring markets outside of Australia. Overseas investments can offer plenty of new opportunities to profit from. Of course, it isn’t that simple, or everybody would be doing it too. A lot of effort must go into any kind of investment you make outside of the market you understand best to avoid bad decisions that can cost you dearly. However, with the right research and advice, you can fare well if you do make the decision to branch out. Here are some points on the whys and why nots of working with foreign markets:

Currency Value

Right now, Australia’s currency is strong. It bounced back in May and is still sitting comfortably above US78c. This is good news for travellers, but bad news for Australian export businesses. Aussie travellers now have more buying power abroad, particularly when they travel to the UK, Canada, and New Zealand, where the local currency is weaker against the AUD. A strong currency is also good news for anyone who loves to shop online. It’s bad news for exporters, however, as the AUD makes Australian products far more expensive for overseas customers.

For businesses that import goods from overseas, a strong AUD is a good thing, as they have more buying power. Importing supplies becomes less expensive, particularly from countries such as the United States, Japan and the UK. Importing from countries with a weaker currency reduces costs in the supply chain and allows for greater profit margins.

This is all simple economics, but something you need to investigate quite heavily if you want to deal with foreign markets. Learn about forex markets and follow the markets in any countries you want to deal with – after all, these things can change very rapidly. Australia may have a strong currency right now, but currencies fluctuate daily, depending on macroeconomics and global events, so the value of your investments could change very easily. Keeping up with political and macroeconomic news in any country you might invest in or trade with is therefore crucial.

Emerging Markets

While we have touched on trading with major economies like the USA, Japan, Europe and the UK, another benefit from foreign investment is when you get in with an emerging market at the right time. China, for instance, has a growing middle class of an estimated 300 million people, and this may be a good target audience for luxury imported products as they tend to enjoy shopping for items that are made in the West as these can be seen as more luxurious.

This is a huge market for American, European, Chinese and Japanese businesses now, but can also be tapped into by Australians who are China’s sixth largest trade partner. Investing in property and business in emerging markets can also be something to consider. Brazil, for example, is a country that is having something of a business boom, and there are also interesting projects going on in the Caribbean that could inspire the right type of investor.

 

Should You Try It?

The problem is, of course, that emerging markets tend to be culturally and linguistically quite different from Australia. Engaging with them can be quite profitable however will require a lot of research and travel, and this is something off-putting to people who’d rather deal with the Western, English speaking markets they already know well.

The idea of dealing with completely different audiences and markets may be a bit intimidating, however it can work out well for the people willing to put the work in. What you will need however, is contacts in your country of choice who can help you understand and learn. Things like exchange rates, politics and business etiquette you can learn from online research, but you won’t truly feel tapped into the market unless you have someone on your side who is part of it. If you can get that kind of connection going, are willing to learn about another culture, and possibly learn another language (for instance, in India and many parts of the Caribbean, English is the first language anyway, however, if you decide you want to work with Brazil you’ll need Portuguese), you may have a better chance to make some great investments.

Business is very international, and being global can generally be a wise move, but do be prepared to put some work in.

*This article is provided for informational and educational purposes only. Information on our website is general advice only and does not take into account any person’s individual objectives, financial situation or needs. Before acting on anything on this website you should consider its appropriateness to you, having regard to your objectives, financial situation and needs.

#acorns #invest
September 2017
Is the Great Australian Dream still a reality?
 

For the past half century the Great Australian Dream has centred on home ownership; a detached house with a Hills Hoist out the back or, more recently, an inner-city terrace. But, with average house prices in some metro areas circling the $1 million mark, the Great Australian Dream has become more of a fantasy for many millennials and first home buyers.

 

For this reason, many of the newspapers have dubbed millennials as “Generation Rent”: a moniker that has transformed into something of a mantra, as many millennials effectively give up on saving for a deposit. The problem is this apathy is coming at a critical time, where they need to be doing the exact opposite – that is, saving more not less. Whereas once, saving for a home took a little dedication and hard work, price-to-income ratios are today around 5.8x nationally, and up to 7.0x in Sydney. The trend also isn’t occurring in isolation; it’s combined with high levels of household debt and stagnant wage growth.

 

However despite this, 42 per cent of respondents are confident with their current financial status.

In practice, it means that first step – from renter to home owner – is a large and difficult one. The Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) found the ability to save for a deposit is the primary constraint for one third of potential home buyers – bigger than the ability to continue to service a mortgage on an ongoing basis.

 

Does this mean the Great Australian Dream is dead? Far from it.

But it does mean millennials need to work even harder to reach their goals and take hold of their own financial futures. To do this, they need to adopt a saving mindset.

 

The challenge is that learning to budget is not necessarily part of everyone’s daily priorities. We’re not taught to manage our money at school or given any sort of formal education on it. Instead, people are expected to learn how to manage their finances from their parents or through a costly process of trial and error. But the trick to it – like anything – is starting small and being persistent.

 

The first step is always the most difficult one.

Moving from spending all of your income to saving $20 a week can be a big leap but once it’s conquered, it gets easier to save more and more because the habit has already been introduced. Further, small savings goals can help reinforce positive behaviour, and make it easier to take bigger steps. Saving enough money to buy a new car could be an initial goal that makes the idea of budgeting for a bigger item – a wedding, a holiday – seem easier. Eventually, with the right type of financial confidence, it’s easier to look at buying a house in a new light.

 

There also needs to be a discussion about the need for home ownership. Knowing Australia’s culture and the mythology around The Great Australian Dream, it’s hard to imagine our young people adopting the European mindset of renting for life, rather than aspiring to own. But in reality, there is no reason to think everyone should own their own home.

 

There are many other investment types that can often lead to better financial outcomes. What millennials need is the right financial education, to understand different asset classes and then be able to choose the ones which will work hardest for them. It also means if they decide to buy a house down the track, they’ll be a better position to do so.

 

Let’s be clear – none of this advice will magically help anyone afford a house overnight. But it will help build a critical change in attitude and provide first step into having a healthier financial balance sheet. It all goes a long way in making the ambition of buying a house seem less like a pipedream!

  Important Information The information on this website is general advice only. This means it does not take into account any person’s particular investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this article to fully understand the benefits and risk associated with the Raiz product. The information in this website is confidential. It must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person. The information is based on assumptions or market conditions which change without notice. This will impact the accuracy of the information. Under no circumstances is the information to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of deciding about investing in Raiz.   Past return performance of the Raiz product should not be relied on for making a decision to invest in Raiz and is not a good predictor of future performance.
#raiz #saving #wealth
5 Tips From Warren Buffett investors should take to heart
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Whether you have been in the investing world long or not, it is very likely you’ve heard of Warren Buffet. A top dog in finance of all sorts, he is one of the five most wealthiest people in the world.

Often referred to as the world’s greatest investor, his long-term track record suggests that title is well deserved! Investors and the business world alike have been seeking his advice for decades, so here we have picked our favourite moments of his wisdom:

“Try to be fearful when others are greedy and greedy only when others are fearful.”

Probably the most famous Buffett-ism, this quote is essentially another way of phrasing the popular investing maxim, “Buy low; sell high.” Investors frequently do the opposite because of herd mentality; our psychological desire to follow the crowd. But being a contrarian can be much savvier. For example, when current events scare investors away from a down market, you might use that opportunity to buy quality stocks on sale.

“Both large and small investors should stick with low-cost index funds.”

Buffett may be a brilliant stock picker, but he still recognises the strength of simple investing with a low-cost S&P 500 index fund.

In 2007, Buffett bet a New York hedge fund $1 million that his simple, low-cost investing strategy would outperform the hedge fund industry over 10 years. And he won.

“The investor of today does not profit from yesterday’s growth.”

This oldie but goodie reminds us that past performance is no guarantee of future results, so you can’t count on a hot investment continuing its streak. Instead, look to the future. Be sure any investment you’re interested in has good prospects and can help you reach your goals.

“Our favorite holding period is forever.”

Of course, Buffett doesn’t really expect anyone to hold onto an investment forever. His point is that you should “buy into a company because you want to own it, not because you want the stock to go up,” as he put it to Forbes magazine in 1974. That means if you’re trying to invest in individual stocks, you look for good businesses you believe can be profitable for the long haul. Then you’ll only sell when you need the cash, not because it’s time to unload a dud.

“Anything can happen anytime in markets… Market forecasters will fill your ear but will never fill your wallet.”

Listen to Warren: Ignore the noise—especially given today’s media landscape, where we have constant access to information, and every minor event stands a chance at making headlines and moving the market (at least in the short term).

In the end, as long are you’re confident in your plan and portfolio, this shouldn’t change your long-term investing strategy! Like the Raiz philosophy to invest small amounts regularly, even in falling markets, this can help you to ride out the downturns in the market and is one of the keys to having a healthier balance over the long run.

*This article is provided for informational and educational purposes only. Information on our website is general advice only and does not take into account any person’s individual objectives, financial situation or needs. Before acting on anything on this website you should consider its appropriateness to you, having regard to your objectives, financial situation and needs.

#acorns #investing
The costs to consider when buying your first property
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By Michael Gilbert, co-founder of Cubbi

Congratulations!

You’ve scrimped, saved, got the cash in hand and you’re just about to buy your first investment property.

Unfortunately, the work doesn’t stop here. In fact, it’s only just beginning.

Whether you’re going to be renting or living in it yourself, buying an investment property always comes with additional expenses that you need to be aware of ahead of time.  

The Raiz community is very familiar with the concept of how small amounts can add up over time and the same can be said for the seemingly innocuous extra costs of owning a house (only in a slightly less enjoyable way).

Here’s a breakdown of exactly what some of those expenses are and how you can prepare for them.

Stamp duty

Scratch this, if you’re a first home buyer with a purchase under $600,000 in Victoria or New South Wales (conditions apply in NSW) where state governments have ditched stamp duty altogether.

For everybody else, chances are you’re going to pay some stamp duty and this is generally the biggest additional cost you’ll have to fork out for. For example, an established home worth $500,000 purchased as a rental property in Queensland will cost a first-time buyer no less than $15,925 in stamp duty.

Another key factor you need to keep in mind is that in some cases lenders won’t allow you to lump your stamp duty in with your mortgage and you’ll need to ensure you have that cash upfront. Always speak to your lender in advance about stamp duty to know where you stand.

Registration and conveyancing fees

Registration fees are paid to the Land Titles Office when you submit documentation for processing and can range up to $3605 in Victoria for properties over $500,000.

They are also usually lumped in with your conveyancing fees, the cost of hiring a solicitor to review all the contracts of sale and ensure the it follows the right legal process. Conveyancing fees are not standardised but are generally close to $1000, if not more.

Council rates

It’s amazing how many people don’t take council rates into consideration. You’re going to end up paying at least $1200 per year and it could be more depending on where you live.

Many councils also charge late fees so to avoid paying even more than necessary find out what your rates will be and set up a direct debit as soon as you’ve settled so you’re never late.

Preparing the property for tenants

When you buy a property there are no clear cut rules that say the seller must have the property in pristine condition when it’s time to hand over the keys.

However, when renting out your property there are more stringent standards for the condition it needs to be in and thus you need to factor in the likelihood of having to carry out some maintenance tasks such as: mowing, hard rubbish clearing, painting, carpet cleaning and replacing old or broken fittings such as old blinds and shower screens.

Getting this stuff done while it’s vacant will help attract better tenants (which in itself can save you money) as well as reducing the cost associated with last minute repairs.

Vacancies

As a landlord your first goal is to get some tenants but have you prepared for the fact you might have a month or two without any? As a rule of thumb, you’ll need to budget for about four weeks of vacancy per year.

In between tenants you’ll likely need to spend more money on maintenance and repairs, such as painting, fixing a wobbly towel rack or extra cleaning costs. Things that just didn’t get done or reported by your tenants.

Engaging a real estate agent might help you find tenants faster but that brings us to our next point…

Agency fees

A lot of people underestimate just how much real estate agents cost. They can plug you for between 5-10% of the rent, depending on location and other factors. If you’re renting a property for $450 a week with an agent charging 7%, that’s $1600 gone a year!

General maintenance

Things happen. They aren’t usually anyone’s fault but they happen. A shower starts leaking, a tenant scrapes a piece of furniture against the wall and leaves a mark, a skirting board comes loose.

These are all perfectly normal things that are inexpensive, in and of themselves, but can quickly add up. If you’re a landlord then you need to have cash on hand to make sure maintenance issues get repaired quickly, especially if they involve critical things like hot water systems or electrical issues - two things that can throw your budget out really quickly.

To be on the safe side, you should set aside 5% of the rent amount in a separate savings account to make sure you’re covered for maintenance emergencies. You don’t want to be wacking those on the credit card and racking up 20% interest on top!

Unfortunately, the supplementary costs of buying a house are - for the most part - unavoidable. The smartest thing you can do is know what they are, when they apply and be prepared for them. Hopefully, this brief guide gives you a bit of an idea of what you need to keep in mind before you start raising your hand at auction.

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Author, Michael Gilbert, co-founder of Cubbi

Cubbi is an online property management platform - for the purpose of cutting out the expensive (and often underperforming) middleman and replacing him with technology. For example, when you accept your tenant, you can create your own lease agreement right then and there online instead of waiting for your agent to get round to it.


Important Information
The information on this website is general advice only.  This means it does not take into account any person’s particular investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this article to fully understand the benefits and risk associated with the Raiz product.The information in this website is confidential. It must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person. The information is based on assumptions or market conditions which change without notice. This will impact the accuracy of the information.Under no circumstances is the information to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of deciding about investing in Raiz. Past return performance of the Raiz product should not be relied on for making a decision to invest in Raiz and is not a good predictor of future performance.

August 2017
What is the comparable rate?
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When it comes to investing, returns on investments (positive and negative) are generally expected to vary from year to year.

While market fluctuations are completely normal, this can make it difficult to measure how much you may potentially make when you are investing small amounts on a regular basis. This is further complicated with making withdrawals when you need the money, as Raiz lets you do. People also like to understand returns in a similar way to interest on a bank account.

This is where the comparable rate needs to be calculated using the internal rate of return (IRR) method.

Since inception, the average Raiz user has made 10.5% p.a. (including all fees except the $1.25 per month) – IRR – comparable rate. But we don’t know what the future may hold so this return cannot be relied on because of market risk going forward*.

Let’s look at two different market scenarios when opening an Raiz account.

You open an Raiz account with $100 and add a recurring $20 monthly deposit for the next 12 months. However, after 6 months you then decide to take $50 out of your Raiz account.

In the first scenario, the market goes up 20% in the first 6 months and then falls 10% for the remaining. This means you would have invested $220 in the first 6 months while the market was rising – taken $50 out – and invested the remaining with $120 recurring in a falling market.

In the second scenario, the market falls 10% in the first 6 months and then rallies 20% for the last 6 months. This mean you would have invested $220 in a falling market – taken out $50 – and invested the remaining with $120 recurring in a very strong rising market.

While both these markets finished at the end of the year on 10%, the return on your Raiz account will be completely different and will depend on how the market got there. In the first example, the comparable rate is 4.75% p.a. While in the second scenario the comparable rate is 16.4% p.a.

These two scenarios illustrate how the market gets there is important, hence the need to do an IRR calculation which takes into account when you made your investment and when you made your withdrawals to calculate a rate that is comparable to, for example, a bank account rate.

To learn more about IRR please visit Investopedia link here

*Please refer to the product disclosure statement and the additional information document to understand more about the markets risks that can affect your portfolio.

Important Information

The information on this website is general advice only.  This means it does not take into account any person’s particular investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this article to fully understand the benefits and risk associated with the Raiz product.

The information in this website is confidential. It must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person. The information is based on assumptions or market conditions which change without notice. This will impact the accuracy of the information.

Under no circumstances is the information to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of deciding about investing in Raiz.  

Past return performance of the Raiz product should not be relied on for making a decision to invest in Raiz and is not a good predictor of future performance.

#acorns #invest #investment
New rules for Super Contribution

When you think of super, it may feel so out of reach that people might be assuming it will be like a pot of gold awaiting them during retirement. That might not be the case if you aren’t aware of what is going on. There’s no doubt that most young people are not engaged with it when they should be. A great article by Caitlin Fitzsimmons goes into this further here on how important it is to get your super right or see more on our blog 'Why your Superannuation is still Important when you’re Young'

It’s also important to keep up to date with the new rules so you can feel in control of your decisions and any actions to take.

Below are the new updates on super contribution from 1 July 2017.

 

All employees are now eligible to claim personal tax deductions on contributions

Prior to 1 July 2017, only established self-employed taxpayers or taxpayers that had little employment income were eligible to claim personal tax-deductible for their voluntary superannuation contributions.

This was due to a rule which prevented you from claiming a tax deduction if 10% or more of your total assessable income came from employment sources.

This rule has now been removed, meaning you could be eligible to claim personal tax deductible on voluntary contributions at any time throughout the financial year, right up until 30 June (depending on your circumstances). This also means you don’t need to arrange a salary sacrifice with your employers to contribute or add more if your circumstances allow.

Raiz also allows you to make voluntary contributions to your superannuation directly from the App for a range of Super Fund Providers. If your Super Fund provider is not listed in the App, please let us know and we will get it listed.

Now your savings in Raiz may be tax deductible*.

 

Raiz Super is also now available. Engaging, affordable superannuation. You can now invest in the same 6 Raiz portfolios and view all your investments in one place, on your mobile phone.

 

The new Concessional Contribution cap

Concessional contributions are the contributions made to your super before your income tax is taken out. Moving forward, this cap has been reduced to $25,000 and applies to all taxpayers, regardless of age. In future years, this cap will be indexed in increments of $2,500.

This cap includes compulsory employer contributions (SG 9.5%), pre-tax salary sacrificed super contributions you have arranged with your employer, and any voluntary contributions you have made.

 

Rolling over unused contribution cap

Off the back of this cap and the ability now for all employees to do tax-deductible voluntary contributions, there is also a new super rule that allows for a ‘catch up’ claim of unused concessional contributions for following years.

What this means is that if you don’t use up the full amount of your concessional contribution cap of $25,000 in a year, the unused amount will be rolled over and accumulated over a rolling 5-year period. This may provide opportunities to make higher voluntary contributions in a future year.

For all these new rules, there are certain eligibility criteria, which are not trivial, so you do need to check with a tax advisor before deciding to make voluntary contributions and claim a deduction.

In additional to these new announcements, for more info on how to use your super in the future for your first home deposit (1 July 2018), check out the news here

 

Important Information

The information on this website is general advice only.  This means it does not take into account any person’s particular investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this article to fully understand the benefits and risk associated with the Raiz product.

The information in this website is confidential. It must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person. The information is based on assumptions or market conditions which change without notice. This will impact the accuracy of the information.

Under no circumstances is the information to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of deciding about investing in Raiz.  

Past return performance of the Raiz product should not be relied on for making a decision to invest in Raiz and is not a good predictor of future performance.

* For the new rules, there are certain eligibility criteria, which are not trivial, so you do need to check with a licensed tax adviser (or other) before deciding to make voluntary contributions and claim a deduction.

#acorns #invest #superannuation
The Advantages of Dollar Cost Averaging

Markets go up and markets go down. This is completely normal, and is known as market volatility or risk. The Raiz Philosophy is to invest small amounts regularly, even in falling markets as this can help you to ride out the downturns in the market and is one of the keys to having a healthier balance over the long run. This is the well-known principle of Dollar Cost Averaging.

 

How does it work? For example, say you have $1,000 to invest. Instead of investing it all at once, you could invest $100 each month into the market for 10 months, despite the changes in the market value.

 

If for example the stock of choice was priced at $10 the first month, you would purchase 10 units. If during the second month the stock was priced at $5, you would purchase 20 units, and so on. In the end, you would have purchased more shares when prices were lower and fewer shares when prices were higher. The outcome is that you may have invested more prudently than simply investing the money all at once in a lump sum.

 

Let’s look at the other key advantages to sticking with Dollar Cost Averaging (DCA):

 

Avoids Bad Timing

Investing in one lump sum and trying to pick the best price to enter the stock is known as market timing, and is something very difficult to do and get right.

If an investor could have any superpower in the world, it would be to pick the low points of the market. Many have tried, succeeded and failed but no one knows exactly when the lows and highs will happen, and no one can stop unwanted surprises from happening.

Dollar Cost Averaging can provide a disciplined strategy as it ensures you are not too exposed to falls in the market when you buy at the top; and rewarding you when the market recovers, for buying when the market was falling. By not depending on the timing, DCA can smooth out the market’s ups and downs.

 

Reduces Risk

Dollar Cost Averaging is most effective in a long term saving strategy. As the market moves up and down, dollar-cost averaging over time reduces your risks of trying to pick the best times to invest from these swings. By viewing falling markets as buying opportunities, you can significantly enhance your long-term return potential when the market rebounds.

 

Removes Emotional Investing

People often make decisions based on emotion or loss aversion. Loss aversion refers to an investor’s tendency to strongly prefer avoiding losses to acquiring gains. Studies suggest that losses are twice as powerful, psychologically, as gains, leading this type of investment mindset to be more likely to make the mistake of needlessly selling holdings and switching to cash in a down market. By avoiding the media hype or fear in picking the ‘right time’, investors can avoid both the euphoric and depressive investment traps.

 

A Dollar Cost Averaging strategy is in line with the Raiz’ philosophy and provides a disciplined strategy.

“We don’t have to be smarter than the rest, we have to be more disciplined than the rest.” – Warren Buffett

  Important Information The information on this website is general advice only. This means it does not take into account any person’s particular investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this article to fully understand the benefits and risk associated with the Raiz product. The information in this website is confidential. It must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person. The information is based on assumptions or market conditions which change without notice. This will impact the accuracy of the information. Under no circumstances is the information to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of deciding about investing in Raiz. Past return performance of the Raiz product should not be relied on for making a decision to invest in Raiz and is not a good predictor of future performance.
#investing #investthechange #money
June 2017
The Investment Rollercoaster
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By Clayton Daniels, author of Fund Your Ideal Lifestyle

I remember when I first started trading stocks. Before the likes of Raiz came around, the only way to access the market was through a broker. These brokers had minimums of $500. As a uni student a decade ago at 23 years of age, that $500 minimum was a confronting minimum.

My emotional investment was high. If the stocks went up, I was elated. If the stocks went down, I was devastated. It was only at the end of a few years of this type of investing – which of course didn’t end up all too profitable – did I learn how unbeneficial it was to be emotionally invested in my investments.

Because when investments go down, it doesn’t automatically equal a bad result. It’s a bad result if you need the money straight away, but if you don’t, all it means is you now get to purchase more of the asset at a discount.

This is counter intuitive I know, but it is how the ultra rich get richer. When the GFC happened, there was a massive transfer of wealth from the middle class to the upper class because the middle class sold down at the exact time they should have been buying.

At the end of the day, if you are investing, you are accepting that what you are buying is a fair price. If your investments temporarily go down, then you should be buying in these moments. This very simple investment strategy is called ‘buying in the dips’.

If you are emotionally investing, this does not make sense. But this is why being in control of your emotions during your investment career is so important. When the roller coaster happens – as it will every year of your investment career – take the opportunity to buy more. If you ultimately believe the world will continue to produce value, and continue to earn a profit, then ultimately the stock market will go up again, and so will your investments. Especially if they are invested across indices such as with the Raiz portfolio

If your only response to a falling market is ‘sell sell sell’, then perhaps you shouldn’t be in the market. Again, I know this is counter-intuitive, but your investment goals should be to control your emotion, and buy more when the stock market goes down, not the other way around.

We all need reminders of this every now and again, and as we have seen some roller-coaster action as of late, I figured this was a timely reminder.

May 2017
Do you need a financial concierge?
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By Clayton Daniel

Do you know what I like most about technology? It’s that I can do less boring things, and focus more on the things I like. I’m not the only one, this has been happening for thousands of years.

Years ago as hunter-gatherers, one of the more lazy villagers looked at everyone else and said ‘why don’t we have the plants and animals we want to eat here instead of looking for them every day?’ And just like that, farming was born.

Then we started riding the animals rather than simply eating them. This turned into the horse and cart. A bit more tinkering created the steam engine, and finally the car. Technology solved the problem of transportation.

Daily annoyances to keep a tidy house have taken the same journey. Electricity and plumbing have solved many of the smaller day to day requirements we need to keep our homes clean.

As you can see, the roll of technology has been to remove us from performing grunt work. Free our time and resources up. Allow us to get more out of less.

But the interesting thing about technology these days is that it’s focus is no longer about solving physical menial work. It’s actually starting to solve cognitive problems. Being helpful in ways to help us maximise what we want to do with the free time we now have.

For example, I can simply say the words ‘hey Siri’ and my phone lights up, waiting to answer my questions. It’s not perfect yet, but it’s getting better. Raiz in a similar way have been helping us invest simply by rounding up purchases and investing the spare change. As you can see, technology is solving more than simply physical exertion.

And now, Raiz is stepping it up a notch. The suite of financial services is extending to help you get the most out of your day to day cash flow. This new update more closely resembles your own financial concierge, all from the inside of your phone.

So what does it do? Well to put simply, it takes the cognitive grunt work out of getting the best result from your day to day cash flow. And how does technology do this? Well it uses machine learning to understand your usual spending patterns. From there, it can tell you a lot.

It can tell you if your overspending compared to your normal spending patterns. It can tell you if you are overspending compared to other people your age and on your salary. If you miss a regular bill it will remind you, and it can give you insights such as where you are spending most of your money, and what days you spend the most.

It gives you useful information in the moments you need the information. It removes you from having to know everything, and outsources it to automation.

As a finance guy, my main message over the last few years has been to outsource to automation. And I’ve seen remarkable results from everyday people who reduced the amount of things they monitor and measure, and simply focused on what they want out of life instead.

Technology in the past has helped us reduce grunt work so we have more time. Technology of the future on the other hand will help us make the most of our new found time. The Raiz financial concierge is one of the first apps to help you do just that.

Clayton Daniel, author of Fund Your Ideal Lifestyle

April 2017
7 Top Tips for Travel Budgeting
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By Craig Joslin, the founder of The Australian Expat Investor

When travelling abroad, one of your key considerations will likely be costs and budgets. The smart traveler knows the best way to limit cash risks, make the most of money-saving opportunities, and most importantly how to make the right decisions on spending. Many “old hands” will offer country-specific advice, but there are some simple tips to save money when travelling abroad.

You can divide your “battle-plan” into three sections; long range planning, before you go, and hitting the ground running. In this article we’ll look at the key tips to making your travel a success.

LONG RANGE PLANNING

If you have enough time to organise things well in advance, you’ll save money. It is often the long range planning that will avail you of the biggest savings.

1. Purchasing Your Tickets

There are certain times of the year when it is cheaper to travel, and there are figures available to give you a guide on exactly how far in advance you should be purchasing. Both Cheapair and CNtraveler provide great information. As a rough range, anywhere between 21 days and 50 days in advance is optimal, but don’t book from Friday through Sunday. Studies suggest that if you follow this, you’re likely to save up to 30% on average.

2. Sorting Out Accommodation

The days of staying in a run-down hotel near the airport just to save money are long gone.   The sheer range of options available to the consummate traveler is now huge, and if you have the time you can compare options such as hotel rooms, AirBnB, or short-term apartment rentals.   Set a realistic accommodation budget and start looking on sites like booking.com or  Airbnb.com for a great comparative search engine.

Figure out your length of stay, estimated budget and most importantly, how far you’re willing to travel on a daily basis. Add the data set to the search function and see how many good options are available.

3. Travel Light

Depending on your choice of carrier and destination, you’re likely to have between 20 and 40 kg of luggage allowance. Try to prioritise your luggage into “must haves” and “nice to haves”.  Consider what you will need when you land and what things you can either do without entirely or can do without for a few weeks.

Should you be planning on taking heavier items such as a golf bag, surfboard, or a musical instrument, it can not only be cumbersome, but you are likely to be charged per kilo over your luggage allowance. Evaluate sending them separately as unaccompanied air freight instead, and you might save a considerable amount of money.

BEFORE YOU GO

Just before you set off, there are plenty of small tasks you can be doing to not only achieve a smoother transition, but also to save money.

4. Travel Insurance

Although the cost of travel insurance can be high, it is guaranteed to give you peace of mind and work out cheaper than running into any out-of-pocket expenses. Insurance will in many cases also entitle you to a higher standard of care if you are not going to a less developed country.

One of the key considerations with insurance is to “get only what you need”. Many companies that offer travel insurance begin consultations with a global package which will include the United States. Because of the high medical costs in the US, if you also include America on your insurance, you’ll pay a much higher premium. Be specific about where you are going and what you’re likely to be doing, this will get you a better quote. And don’t be afraid to shop around, either.

5. How Do You Intend To Spend?

Undoubtedly, the easiest option for spending money overseas is to use your credit or debit card; you can do big purchases on the card, or get cash from a range of ATMs. But just because it is the easiest way, this doesn’t mean it’s the cheapest.  Bank charges (in particular foreign currency transaction fees) can be extremely high. There are several alternatives worth considering:

Travel Cards: They work almost exactly like credit/debit cards but are set-up for international use. They have the added advantage of not ruining your life if it becomes lost or stolen. Check out the reviews at choice.com.au.

Get Currency in advance: When most people land, the first thing they do is go to the airport ATM or Money Exchange desk. The rates are based on the idea of a captive crowd that needs local currency before they can catch a taxi or a bus, so the exchange rate is not as good as you could otherwise receive. Having local cash already in your hand will save time, effort and money. Try buying your currency in advance. Places like Travelex.com or Travel Money Oz can get you better rates as they are seeking out customers as opposed to relying on desperate need. For more information on advance currency buying, check out this article.

HITTING THE GROUND RUNNING

If you’ve ever gotten off a plane and seen other people “floating around” the airport, it’s because they don’t have a plan. And those that don’t have a plan are likely to end up spending a lot of money for no good reason. If you know exactly what you’re going to do and where you’re heading, you can ensure that the cheapest/best options are available to you. Here’re a couple of tips to be the “best-prepared on arrival”.

6. Get a Local SIM

Most phones today come with International capabilities; which is great, but expensive. Ask around the airport for a place to buy a local SIM card. It doesn’t have to be your main/permanent SIM, but it will cut costs on calls and especially internet usage whilst you are travelling abroad.

If you don’t buy a local SIM card and just want to rely on free local wifi networks, at least don’t forget to switch off mobile data on your smart phone.  You don’t want to return home to get the nasty surprise of the high cost of international data downloads whilst you have been on holiday.  

7. Immediate Transport

There will be several counters in the arrival hall offering various modes of transport either into the city or to your hotel. There will also be a lot of people offering taxi services. Don’t feel pressured into choosing one straight away. “Informal taxis” or “private cars” can end up costing you a lot more (and may be a lot less safe) than what you need to spend (depending on the location)

Wherever you’re going and whatever you intend to do when you get there, being prepared is never a bad idea. Proper research will allow you to set a realistic budget and stick to your spending goals. The more cash you save on unnecessary expenditure, the more money you’ll have for fun.

 By Craig Joslin, the founder of The Australian Expat Investor

March 2017
Oh Snap(chat)!
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By Clayton Daniel.

I’m sure you heard the news. Snapchat listed on the US stock exchange this month.

This was a pretty big deal. A company which built itself on a scandalous premise has just turned it’s founder and CEO Evan Spiegel into the world’s youngest self-made billionaire.

This nineties kid has shown the world that eyes are what matters the most. Not early sales, not the barriers to entry – but simply attention. And if you can pull it off, riches and super model fiancés await.

Things couldn’t be better for Evan. But what about the investors since Snapchat listed?

Well we’ve seen a lot of volatility. In March alone the stock price has bounced around between $19 and $30. This isn’t completely out of the ordinary for such a high profile IPO, but I’m sure the market is still deciding on whether Snapchat is the next Myspace or the next Facebook.

But imagine all those people who waited patiently for this stock to list, bought at the top, freaked out and sold when it bottomed out, and sat there looking at their bank account with 30% in it only a few days later.

I promise you this happened.

Do you know why? Because unless you are an investment expert, unless investments are your day to day job, investing is controlled by emotion. The old Wallstreet adage is still true “financial markets are driven by two powerful emotions – greed and fear.”

And I’m not slamming those who did it. More than likely it was those hoping to learn more about investing, were aware of Snapchat, so took the plunge. Emotions would have completely driven the entire experience.

I’ve been there. All investors have. Controlling your emotions while investing is one of the hardest – yet most pivotal things to master. The problem is, unless you want to spend many hours trading for either yourself or a large institution, you’re always going to be emotionally involved.

Another option is an investment strategy that has been outrageously popular since the GFC, outsourcing your investment decisions to an algorithm. This trading algorithm doesn’t suffer from emotional involvement, isn’t swept up in the latest craze, or sell at the worst time possible.

It is simply designed to follow investment instructions. It’s called an ETF. There are many different types, but the most popular simply hold a tiny piece of the biggest companies in the world. For example, if you had owned an S&P500 ETF, you would have automatically invested around 0.2% of your portfolio in Snapchat regardless.

No effort. No research. No getting swept up in the emotion of the trade. However now Snapchat will play a roll in your overall performance. Not a massive roll, but an appropriate sized roll. It would sit relatively equally among 500 other large and profitable businesses.

And this is the beauty of ETF investing. It is emotionless investing, the best kind of investing. And unless you become a full time investor, it will be the best way to unemotionally invest over many years. So unless you are a professional investor, any head-space you put towards investing is simply going to create decision fatigue. And the best way to invest without emotion, without the effort, and without the need to become an investment expert – invest in ETFs. Luckily for you, that’s all Raiz uses.

By Clayton Daniel of Fund Your Ideal Lifestyle

Working out without the sweat.
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By Clayton Daniel Fund Your Ideal Lifestyle

I hate working out.

I still do it.

Sometimes.

But mostly I hate it.

The reason I hate it, is I have to do it repeatedly. If I go to the gym four times a week for six months - great. Things are getting ahead. But if I drop down to once a week for six months. It’s all gone again.

I’m sure you know my frustration. Health is a constant battle.

There is yet to be a piece of technology to take care of this for us. At the moment, we all still have to use self control, self discipline and sweat to reach our health plans. None of this is automatic. Every push, pull, grunt, squat, sit up – it’s all based on us. There is zero work around.

But the awesome thing about technology, is the basics of money management can now be taken care of for us. Without us doing anything.

It’s like having a personal trainer that does the working out for us. Every single day.

What I like about automated investments is that I don’t have to rely on my self control and self discipline to succeed. I don’t even need to learn how to invest any longer.

That massive change has only come about in the last decade. Over ten years ago when I started getting into investing, I had to learn about everything. From clearing days, to stock brokers, to investment philosophies. I can go on and on.

But you don’t have to. While you still have to learn how to do a pull up correctly, you don’t need to learn about ‘speculative mining stocks’. And in order to avoid getting hurt you should learn how to warm up correctly, but you don’t have to learn about ‘active fund management’.

These days, technology and automation can take of most of the hassle with investing. I don’t need to worry about what my investments are, or even how regularly I am investing. All I know is that this is now being taken care of for me.

With the world changing so rapidly, it’s not worth waiting for it to change back again. Instead, leverage technology where possible to create shortcuts for yourself. Money management is a rabbit hole you can explore for many years. But is it the best use of your time? Probably not. So while I’m all for learning, I’m not a big fan of inefficiency.

These days you need to be selective on where you spend your time and attention.

As such, an app like Raiz can’t replicate an entire career in the personal finance space, but it can take care of the basics extremely well. And unless you plan to head down the path of becoming a personal finance expert, the basics are more than enough.

Outsource your investments to automation.

Get results without the sweat.

Check out the exclusive Acorns offer for Clayton Daniel’s new book Fund Your Ideal Lifestyle. 

February 2017
Twelve Months in - did you miss out?
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By Clayton Daniel of Fund Your Ideal Lifestyle

As Raiz ticks over the first twelve months of a successful campaign to engage Australian’s with their money, I wanted to circle back around to see if you benefited. To see if you were in the market, or out of the market.

See Raiz simply holds your investments for you. And I say ‘simply’ on purpose. As a former financial adviser who built a career around investing millions of dollars, I can tell you – how the money is invested is usually the hard part. But thankfully it’s all now at the tip of your fingers.

So over the last twelve months – the market went UP. Great result for everyone invested. But were you invested, or were you ‘trying to get a better return’ someplace else?

A big misconception with Raiz is that they are an investment – which they aren’t. The investments that sit within the Raiz investment structure (the app on your phone) hold investments called ETFs. In a nutshell, these ETFs go up if the market goes up, and down if the market goes down.

Really simple stuff.

So again I ask – did you invest, or did you miss out?

Do the markets go up all the time? Of course not. But do they go up more than the go down? Yes – that’s because our economy keeps growing, and companies like Commonwealth bank and Woolworths keep making a profit. And as long as our economy keeps growing, and our companies keep making profits, the market will continue to go up.

I’ve had my account for around nine months now. And I’m happy with how the market went. Again, the result wasn’t created by Raiz – but they gave me the opportunity to access growth over the last nine months. Check out the screen capture below:

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Did I make life changing money?

No.

But would I make life changing money in any retail investment in less than twelve months?

No.

So why am I such a big fan of this non-life changing money?

Because I didn’t think about this investment at all. Not at all. I invest without thinking about it, and the market does what it does, and the majority of the time I’ll make more money. Some weeks it goes down, and even some years it will go down, but none of that matters. Assuming our economy has many years in it – the investments will ultimately go up. And I won’t think about any of it.

Compare that to the Melbourne property I own with a couple of mates inside of a Self Managed Super Fund. We have to have annual meetings with each other, with the accountant, with the rental manager, with the banks, think about tenants, think about bills, think about vacancy – think about everything! There’s a lot of thinking going on!

If you’ve read any of my previous articles on decision fatigue you’ll know I’m not a big fan of thinking about investing and cash flow. Turns out you get better results when things are set up on automatic.

Which is why I ask – did you miss out?

Raiz shouldn’t be your entire investment strategy – that wouldn’t be prudent. No one should have all their eggs in one basket when it comes to investments. But should it be an additional little regular investment you have on the side which you spend zero head space on?

Yeah.

Use it for Christmas presents every year, use it for an annual getaway, use it for an emergency account (probably the best idea) or use it to simply ‘go hard on the money’ and learn about investing in the simplest way possible. Whichever way you choose to use your Raiz account is up to you – just don’t miss out.

Check out the exclusive Acorns offer for Clayton Daniel’s new book Fund Your Ideal Lifestyle.

January 2017
Investing isn’t just for financy pants
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By Clayton Daniel of Fund Your Ideal Lifestyle

I remember over a decade ago when I didn’t know anything about investing. It’s a really good frame of reference to have, and one that I hope I never lose.

Because investing can seem ten million times more complex than it really is. Why? Well, money is an emotional topic, and the first time you do anything it seems hard.

So with that in mind, I wanted to explain all the financy pants terms that get thrown around, and give some explanation as to where all the pieces of the puzzle fit in. I think the more you understand about where you are investing, and what you are investing in, the more control you will feel, and ultimately the more comfort.

So here we go.

Starting right at the top we have the ever-ethereal word ‘market’. This word gets thrown around a fair bit. It basically means the same as it always has. A place where people gather to buy and sell. But instead of buying and selling fish or bread, they are buying and selling assets like property or equities.

So when something is traded on the market, it really means it is traded in a place where there are buyers and sellers. If an asset has a market price, it simply means the price is at a point between where buyers want to buy and sellers want to sell.

Now let’s talk about the most common type of asset traded on the market – an equity. An equity is called as such as when you own it, you own equity in a company. You own a part of the company. Equities have the remarkable distinction of being able to interchange their name at any given moment. Have you ever heard the terms ‘shares’ or ‘stocks’. Yeah, same thing.

At this stage, now you know that equities are traded on the equity market (or shares/stocks are traded on the share/stock market). This is where you can buy and sell blue chip shares like the big four banks, or speculative mining shares. There are thousands of different stocks to trade on the stock market. The only limits are your limits to research and what equities you are comfortable in buying.

Okay, so that’s great right? You can go out right now and start investing. Fantastic. What are you going to buy? If you are an investment professional, you will have an investment philosophy that works for you. If you are not an investment professional, you probably don’t have an investment philosophy.

Therefore you can either spend a lot of time researching to become an investment professional, you can hire an investment professional for you, or you can buy what’s called an Exchange-Traded Fund (ETF). An ETF is simply a computer algorithm that invests your money into equities. The benefit is, for every change to the portfolio you aren’t charged a fee. Instead, you pay an ongoing percentage fee to cover the management of your portfolio. This reduces the conflict of ‘churning’ investments which is the natural result of a business model where revenue is made through the amount of buy/sells that are made.

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As you can see above, the amount of global money invested in ETF’s has grown significantly since the start of the Global Financial Crisis (GFC) in 2007. So why has the ETF market grown by 400% in less than a decade? Well for a few reasons.

Firstly, investors were burned so bad during the GFC that they got sick of paying for stockbrokers, financial advisers, and fund managers to invest their money. The argument that people were better at picking equities than computers were largely proven wrong.

This in turn created the rise in Modern Portfolio Theory. Put basically, you get 80% of your gains and losses simply by being in the market. There are easily refutable points to this theory, but put simply, it provided a framework to build a portfolio without human involvement.

Which brings me to technology. The technology to build these trading algorithms have improved like all other tech has improved over the decades. These days there are many different types of ETF’s, though most the money is still in the easy to understand simple ones.

As always, price is very important. Some ETF’s are so unbelievably cheap that it’s hard to see where the revenue is being made by the product issuer. Some ETF’s are so cost effective that on a million-dollar portfolio you can pay as little as $300 a year.

And with all these benefits it drew in many investors, which in turn created more awareness, and more education. To the point where now ETF’s are essentially the most popular way to invest. And considering the points above, it’s not hard to see why.

Now you know how to invest in the market, by purchasing equities through an ETF. Brilliant. You’re nearly there. So how do you do all this? How do you pick which broker to use, and which ETF’s to invest in. Well again, you can either learn to do it yourself, hire someone to do it for you, or use technology.

This brings me to the last piece of financy pants education today. The technology to make all this happen – Raiz. Raiz is simply an app which takes the small amount of round ups on purchases you make in everyday life, and invests them for you into ETFs.

Raiz themselves don’t have anything to do with the ups and downs of the market. They simply make easy what has typically been hard to do – open an account and start investing. They take the manual work out of starting a brokerage account, and choosing which ETF’s to invest into.

They take all the complexities out of investing, and make it as easy as buying your daily coffee. And that to me is brilliant. As a personal finance expert, the ease in which they make investing is unbelievable. Raiz are the packaging to make investing easy for the every day person.

So to recap: You invest in the market, by purchasing shares, with an ETF, through the Raiz app.

Look at you – all financy pants…..

By Clayton Daniel of Fund Your Ideal Lifestyle

What to do as the Dow Jones approaches 20,000?
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By Leveraged 

With the Dow Jones Industrial Average approaching 20,000 and the ASX All Ordinaries Index reaching its 12-month high, many investors are wondering what they should do from here. Some are wondering if they have missed the run, others are asking if they should take profits at these levels.

The short answer to these questions is that investors should do little different as a result of this milestone level. This is a timely moment to remind investors of a basic but often forgotten quality of investing. Investors should continue to invest with a longer term outlook rather than trying to time the market.

Whether investors enter the market here or if they should take profits here has nothing to do with these milestone numbers. Instead investors should keep in mind things such as the timeframe of their financial goals and their tolerance to investment volatility.

Those saving for a distant goal, such as saving for retirement or their children’s education should look to start investing right away. For those who are aiming to retire soon, they could consider decreasing exposure to growth assets if a short term shock could be detrimental to their retirement goals. Investors could also consider rebalancing portfolios from asset classes that have appreciated into other asset classes to ensure the mix is still in line with their risk profile.

Too many investors are tempted to buy the market during bull markets but flee the market during a correction. This results in buying high and selling low. Instead, investors should keep in mind things such as their investment time horizon and the tolerance to ride market ups and downs. It is better to have a rule based investment approach than to make investment decisions based on emotion.

This information is general in nature and does not take into account any person’s particular investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should not act on this information.  The information is based on assumptions or market conditions and may change without notice. This may impact the accuracy of the information.

If I could talk to my 21 year old self about money....
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By Clayton Daniel of Fund Your Ideal Lifestyle 

As one from the older end of the Millennial generation (1982 – 2000), I can say without a doubt the world is changing rapidly.

It’s crazy to think my first games console was the Atari 2600. Then Nintendo and Sega came along, which were ultimately supplanted by Xbox and Playstation. VR it seems will likely take both their scalps.

I use video games as an illustration of progression. Sometimes I forget I’ve actually aged thirty three years, but then seeing is believing.

But this article isn’t about lamenting how my metabolism has slowed down, or how young everyone looks in bars these days – it’s about what I would say to my 21 year old self about money.

At 21 I didn’t know anything. I could punch out a nasally punk rock lyric to a room full of rowdy teenagers, but not much more than that. To say I didn’t know anything about money was an understatement.

Then at a pivotal time in my life I met an entrepreneur who was travelling around the world having a grand old time. He bought me the book ‘rich dad poor dad’ and it set my on a path I now find myself over a decade later. That book taught me my first lessons in personal finance, and I became obsessed.

Absolutely obsessed. I realized by understanding the language of money, the rest of life’s problems can get in line. Money is simply transportable power. The more you control, the more control you have over your own world.

And my thought process was this – ‘more money equals better, therefore more time spent learning about money equals better’. Fast forward another twelve years and I have a degree in accounting, worked as an accountant, then financial adviser, and ultimately grew and sold a financial planning business.

And even though I ‘get it’ now, I’ve dedicated my life to understanding it. Again, I’m obsessed with it so I’m lucky. But what about the 99.99% of people who don’t dedicate their lives to understanding personal finance? What about everyone else who knows a little, but not enough? What about my 21 year old self?

Well, this is what I would tell my 21 year old self about money before I ever dedicated my life to understanding it. ‘Get 80% of the results with 20% of the effort’.

While we all have heard of the Pareto Principle, have you ever considered using this principle with money? Everyone thinks they need a PHD in personal finance to do well – but you don’t. Everyone thinks they must think about their money a lot in order to get the most out of it – but you don’t. So I’m talking to those people who want to do better with their money, but can’t be bothered to do so. And I know, there are a lot of you out there.

So let’s get to it. How do you 80/20 your personal finance? Easy, use technology. Outsource your self-discipline to automation. I promise you, money more so than anything else in life, if you use an automatic system to perform a task rather than rely on yourself to do it personally, your chances of success go from 10% to 100%.

So get your own outcome, and outsource to automation.

Tip 1 – Your salary account should not be your spending account. For example, if you had two accounts, you get paid into account (a) and AUTOMATICALLY transfer across to yourself an amount you’re happy to spend guilt free each week into account (b). Account (b) has a bank card attached, account (a) does not.

Social psychologist Roy Baumeister showed unfulfilled desire causes us decision fatigue. Reduce your desire to spend money in your account by putting one level of separation between you and your savings/salary. Less distractions, better outcomes.

Tip 2 – If you want to invest, do it automatically, don’t rely on being interested enough each week to follow up. Raiz can AUTOMATICALLY receive regular contributions from your account. How hard is that to set up? Five minutes? Five minutes ‘work’ upfront equals long term investing with zero ongoing effort.

Sure you can get more fancy than that, but start simple. By doing these two things you are taking care of your money today (cash-flow) and tomorrow (capital assets). And if you have an automated investment system to think about your tomorrow, your only focus is guilt-free spending today .

By Clayton Daniel of Fund Your Ideal Lifestyle

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December 2016
Big Plans Succeed With Little Steps
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By  Clayton Daniel

Have you ever woken up one day and said to yourself ‘wow, I really have to get my act together…’. The next day it’s all green smoothies, two hours at the gym, open the credit card statements, and of course – calling your mother.

“While we forgot what it meant to build something slowly and quietly in the background, believe it or not, I think we are starting to remember again.”

It’s a knee jerk reaction. As such, you and I both know it won’t last. We over-estimate what we want to achieve in a week. But in a similar fashion, we can also under-estimate what we can achieve in a year.

I recently wrote an article on how a five year plan changed my life. It did quite well off the back of Linkedin (I’ll never understand Linkedin), but I think I know why. While we forgot what it meant to build something slowly and quietly in the background, believe it or not, I think we are starting to remember again.

What was once a long way to the top if you want to rock and roll was replaced with reality TV singing competitions. Napster came along in the nineties, the whole music industry went digital. And as Sanity and the Virgin mega-stores shut down, we called it a day on hard copy music . But then this happened… ‘Vinyl albums just outsold digital for the first time ever’

“Money it seems, is returning to its roots also.”

Instant gratification is rather gratifying, but so is something else. Anticipation. The buildup. The ability to appreciate what you’re holding in your hands. The process of buying an album was a part of the journey. Music is more than just listening, it’s experiencing the whole package.

Money it seems, is returning to its roots also.

Credit cards are instant cash. Savings take a little bit of time. But I can guarantee which one feels better to spend. I can guarantee which one is guilt free spending and which one isn’t. I can guarantee which one will keep you from reaching all your other goals, and which one simply plays it’s roll in being a part of your financial life.

“Even if you are disciplined enough to put money aside in an account – the fact that it is sitting there and you aren’t spending it is a mental drain.”

So how do you build up a treasure trove of cash?

Well with my work around understanding decision fatigue in regards to money, savings make for a strange situation. See, even if you are disciplined enough to put money aside in an account – the fact that it is sitting there and you aren’t spending it is a mental drain.

What a pain.

This comes from the research performed by American social psychologist Roy Baumeister. Basically unfulfilled satisfaction distracts you from your task and hand. This in turn reduces your performance in all areas of life. Put simply – if you save money in an account you have access to, it’s simple existence will demand you spend it. If you don’t, your brain will be distracted until you do.

Again, what a pain.

So how do we achieve two things:

Build up a guilt free amount of money to spend once a year on something big

Do so in a way in which we aren’t reminded of every time we look at our bank accounts.

Luckily, you’ve come to the right person - I do this for a living. You build up a savings accounts with regular deposits in a side account that you can’t spend with a card.

“Build regular deposits in an account you don’t have instant access to. By accumulating savings in account you don’t think about everyday, you avoid the decision fatigue associated with the constant desire to spend it.”

See my journey from sojourn savant to lifestyle finance expert took over five years of small regular improvements (plus another five years previously in accounting – but who’s counting). When I woke up on a beach in Southern France five years ago and decided I needed to get my act together, I didn’t make a large knee jerk reaction. I built success with little steps over a period of time.

From my professional experience of handling the cash flow of many young professionals over the years, I can say this applies to the personal finance space more than anything else.

And so like everything else, how do we reduce the barrier to entry? How do we make this easy on you? Simple - build regular deposits in an account you don’t have instant access to. By accumulating savings in account you don’t think about everyday, you avoid the decision fatigue associated with the constant desire to spend it.

“If you were to set in motion today a $10 a week regular deposit arrangement, next year for Christmas there will be around $500 waiting for you to spend.”

Great, so where can you find these types of accounts? Well, what about opening a new bank account with a new bank? That would work right? Why of course! I’m sure you’re a massive fan of the banks and can’t wait to open another account with another institution….

To save that hassle you could always open another bank account with your current provider. But then, we both know a simple transfer is 0.2 seconds away from spending. That’s going to defeat the whole purpose of cognitive minimalism. We want the money far enough away from you so you don’t have to think about it, but close enough to spend when the time is right. So what are you to do?

While Raiz is a financial literacy tool to help you engage with your money, it has a lesser known function called regular deposits. All this does is automatically move a set amount across each month into your account. If you were to set in motion today a $10 a week regular deposit arrangement, next year for Christmas there will be around $500 waiting for you to spend.

And in the meantime you’ll see the market go though it’s classic roller-coaster up and down. It will go up, it will go down. And withstanding any kind of cataclysmic wild events - it will only ever mean a couple of dollars up or down as investment amount is comfortably low. The benefit however is your investor intelligence will increase while simultaneously building a small portfolio in the background that doesn’t create decision fatigue.

Big plans succeed with little steps.

Clayton Daniel

In this example, $10 a week put aside over 52 weeks would equal $520 if there were no movements in the market. Obviously this is a theoretical case study with the end result being above or below this amount. The case study mentioned above is not a suitable long term investment strategy as anything less than five years in the market is considered too short of a time frame to benefit from returns. Instead the case study above is simply to provide education around the benefit of consistently making small regular deposits into an investment account – the withdrawal after 52 weeks is not mandatory. Raiz cannot provide any certainty around how much money an investor would be able to withdraw in the event they followed the above case study as investment returns are unpredictable, and past performance does not provide insight into future performance.

Top ways to save for your holiday

By RateCity

We all know that travel can be expensive. By the time you add up your flights, accommodation and insurance costs it almost feels like there’s no money left to go out and enjoy the city to which you have travelled.

Finding new ways to come up with the cash for your holiday, and to keep costs down while you’re on vacation, is a must for every travel addict.

Here are some of the best ways to pay for your holiday necessities and still have enough money left over for those once in a lifetime travel experiences.

Saving up before you go 

Saving enough to go away on a trip is often the first and most difficult hurdle for cash-strapped travellers.

Incentive based savings accounts are a great way of stashing some cash for your next holiday as they tend to both require a minimum monthly deposit and discourage you from making any withdrawals.  By sticking to the account’s basic terms and conditions, you effectively sign yourself up to a relatively simple savings plan.  By doing so you are rewarded with bonus interest which can go a long way to making your trip even more memorable.

The RAMS Saver account is a great example of an incentive based saving account.  It has some conditions in order for customers to earn bonus interest (on top of the variable base interest rate the account offers). Firstly, customers must deposit at least $200 each month.  This could be as easy as getting a portion of your salary paid into the account each month.

Secondly, in order to be eligible for the bonus interest rate, customers must not make any withdrawals each month. This effectively makes customers think twice about whether they really need to spend money now or instead build up the spending money for their trip. Bonus interest is only payable on balances up to $500K.

Apart from the traditional savings account, new apps can help you stay disciplined and save extra cash before your big trip. An example of this is the Raiz app that can be a useful tool for savers who find it hard to stick to a financial plan.  

The app helps in identifying areas of your spending where you can cut back, and setting reasonable short and long term targets for yourself. Raiz allows you to automate how much you save by allowing you to save & invest any amount on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis.

Another key feature of Raiz that helps relieve the stress of saving is Round-Ups. Round-Ups takes any transaction you make on your credit or debit card, rounds it up to the nearest dollar and invests the change into your portfolio. By linking saving to spending, it is a great way of showing that you can save without affecting your lifestyle.

Saving on insurance 

Travel insurance is a must for any holiday. While it will involve an initial cost, the cost of not having insurance if something goes wrong could be infinitely higher.

Online travel insurance specialists, InsureandGo, suggest buying directly from a specialist to help cut out middle man fees on travel insurance. Buying your insurance direct from an online supplier can work out cheaper, but make sure you shop around for cover that is appropriate for you – not just cheap.

It’s also recommended to read the terms and conditions and take note of any inclusions and exclusions on your policy so you know exactly for what you are covered. This should help you avoid running into any surprise costs down the track.

While most policies will cover you for standard items – like medical/hospital and emergency, trip cancellation, liability, baggage. Before you purchase your insurance think about what other unique areas you will need cover for.

Will you be doing any risky sports or activities that required extra cover? Perhaps you taking an expensive camera or renting a car? These are just some of the things that you should take into consideration when choosing your cover so you are not left out of pocket if something goes wrong.

Another tip is to look out for discounts and promotions. Just like your favourite clothing store, travel insurers also offer coupon and discounts. If you’re a regular traveller, it may be worth signing up to their newsletters or checking out their social media pages is a great way to find out about these limited time offers.

Saving on accommodation 

For those looking to pay less for accommodation and more for experiences, house and pet sitting is the ideal option. By providing free pet care when you travel, you can enjoy the opportunity to spend time with a pet and live like a local in the places you visit.

You could reduce the cost of your trip by over a third and help pet owners find peace of mind while they are away from home. Instead of checking into a hotel you can stay for free in homes across Australia and all over the world.

This style of accommodation is an experience in itself and gives you the chance to make connections with local people, discover off-the-beaten-path destinations, and take advantage of the companionship having a pet can provide. By organising house and pet sitting stays through a community like TrustedHousesitters, for less than the cost of one night in a 3-star hotel, you could save thousands of dollars on your holiday accommodation.

TrustedHousesitters is an online community of pet lovers who engage in a mutually beneficial exchange to ensure all members can find the freedom to travel. Providing a simple solution to a universal problem, they help home and pet owners connect with caring, verified sitters who offer free pet care in exchange for a free retreat, because they want to spend time with pets when they travel.

Saving on the road 

Apps are not only for saving before your trip, they can also make life a lot easier when you’re out on the road. One way that apps can make your travel experience better (and cheaper) is by helping you avoid those “tourist trap” restaurants that give you inauthentic food for double the price of a true local feed. 

Using the Townske app, you are able to easily uncover the places that locals go to again and again. These are the places that are doing amazing things, providing amazing experiences and are often at or below prices of more touristy places. With Townske, you could improve you travel experience and have the opportunity to enjoy the true richness of cities.

Another hot tip that could see you saving thousands over your travels is getting access to an International Student Identity Card (ISIC). Full time students, teachers and anyone under the age of 31, qualify for one of 3 lifestyle and discount cards.

First established in 1953, all bona fide students over the age of 12, regardless of their nationality, race, gender or religion can purchase an ISIC card at an affordable price. Via one single card, ISIC students gain preferential and discounted access to products, services and experiences relevant to all aspects of student life, from software licenses, cinema access to bookstores, public transport, cafés and eateries and much more.

Whether you’re staying put in Australia or heading off on an overseas adventure, these internationally recognised discount and lifestyle cards are the real deal when it comes to savings.

ISIC gives you a choice of up to 42,000 lifestyle and travel benefits in over 133 countries, including more than 5,000 in Australia and New Zealand. For example, you could get 20 per cent off your meals at over 2,500 restaurants, cafes and takeaway outlets across Australia and New Zealand.

There are also exclusive discounts on flights and other travel products through STA Travel and negotiated discounts on train, bus, tram & ferry tickets around the world. There is an ISIC app that can be downloaded to help you check for discounts while you’re on the go.

November 2016
The legal Australian Offshore bank account
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By Clayton Daniel

Creating wealth is a long-term process, and in the same way that being a small degree off-course can have a huge impact while navigating a long journey, small effects add up to big outcomes over long-term investing.

As such, tax efficient investing creates better returns for no extra investment risk. For example if you built two identical portfolios in two separate entities, with the only difference being the tax rate applied to the earnings, the result will be better returns for the entity with the lower tax environment.

With that in mind there is a tax structure in Australia you can build assets in, so tax efficient it makes seeking a tax dodging strategy like an offshore bank account in the Isle of Man redundant.

Why risk either being ripped off or going to jail by siphoning your money offshore to avoid tax, when there is a perfectly legal way to reduce your tax right now?

Very few people understand how attractive this tax vehicle is, as it has a very boring and bureaucratic name. Considering the advantages of ending up with more money in your pocket over the long term, it’s strange you never see this tax structure up in lights.

However, for those in the know, it has such unbelievable advantages that the government built restrictions on how much you can put in. They did so to stop those who bother to wade through the technical data from pouring as much money in as possible.

Lucky for you, I’m going to save you the hassle of peeling through hundreds of pages of dry government fact sheets, and instead put all the tax benefits here for you in plain English.

The crazy thing is, you would already have heard of this tax structure before, probably even own one, but found it to be as stimulating as a Top 40 dance track from the 1990’s (Except The Prodigy, they were awesome, and I won’t hear another word about it.) It’s called Superannuation.

The misconception about Superannuation is that it’s an investment. It isn’t. It’s a tax structure. Think of it as a car. Just as you can put almost any kind of person in a car, you can build almost any kind of investment portfolio inside of Superannuation (restrictions exist: here for summaryhere for in-depth).

It will save you money right now today, save money every year, and save money in retirement. Put simply, with the choice to build an investment portfolio in your own name, compared to building an identical portfolio in Superannuation, you can ensure a better after-tax result by using a tax-efficient entity while not taking on additional investment risk.

1)            SAVE MONEY TODAY

As an ex-tax accountant, I can’t tell you how many people ask this question around tax time: ‘What can I do to reduce my tax?’ Most people hate paying more tax than they must, and will do anything to reduce it. Think Negative Gearing, the purposeful loss in income to pay less tax.

What if there was a way to reduce your income, but rather than losing your money through Negative Gearing, you kept the money instead?

This strategy is called salary sacrifice. It is redirecting a portion of your salary to Superannuation and is taxed at 15% (for incomes <$300k). For example, if your salary is above $180k, you pay close to half your income in taxes and levies. By redirecting a portion of your salary to long-term investments, you immediately save over 30% in tax.

2)            SAVE MONEY EVERY YEAR

Investments should earn the investor income every year. If you hold investments in your own name, this income goes on top of your salary. For example, if you earn $80,000 per year from employment, and a further $20,000 per year in investment income, the investment income is taxed at almost 40%.

If instead, you earned the $20,000 investment income inside of a Superannuation tax structure, you would have only paid 15% tax. Saving over 20% tax on your investment returns every year of your wealth creation is going to have a substantial positive effect on your long-term results. Also, as franked dividends are taxed at 30%, and the tax environment for Superannuation is only 15%, you’re able to claw back the other 15% tax from the government. Imagine that! The government paying you tax instead of the other way around!

3)            SAVE MONEY IN THE FUTURE

The benefits of the Superannuation tax structure are impossible to beat once you hit the age you are finally going to start using your asset base for the purpose it was designed for: to pay you an income when you no longer work. It is impossible to beat because these three points have a tax rate of 0%. And you can’t beat 0% tax. It’s truly an offshore bank account within our own borders.

3a. SELL ASSETS FOR 0% CAPITAL GAINS TAX (CGT)

When a couple in their sixties is sitting in front of me and about to declare retirement, they often tell me with pride the size of the investment portfolio they have built up over the last forty years in their own names. Properties, shares, managed funds etc.

The pain in their eyes when I tell them the size of their tax bill because of their success has stayed with me. It’s not fun learning you have to pay the government hundreds of thousands of dollars just as you’re about to start surviving on the spoils.

If they had only known about the ability to transfer assets held inside of Superannuation into tax-free environments before selling, they could have avoided every cent of tax payable.

As soon as you ‘flick the switch’ on the Superannuation tax structure from ‘accumulation’ to ‘pension’, every asset immediately becomes tax-free (assuming your super account allows this).

3b. TAX ON EARNINGS DROP TO 0%

For the entire wealth creation journey inside of Superannuation, you only pay 15% tax on all earnings by investments. And it gets even better from there. Once you hit pension phase, the tax then becomes 0%.

From the moment you start receiving income from your assets, your investment portfolio will live in an entirely tax-free environment, never to pay tax on investment earnings again.

3c. INCOME FROM SUPERANNUATION IS TAXED AT 0%

And finally the last benefit of reaching pension phase and having your assets inside of a Superannuation tax structure, is the income you draw down to fund your ideal lifestyle when you no longer work is taxed at 0% also (Only after age 60. From age 55 – 60 the income is taxed Marginal Tax Rates less 15%. This age 55 access is only available to those born before 1 July 1960. Sounds complicated but it isn’t. If you are under age 50 now, you have to wait until you’re 60.)

From the benefits above, you can see the Superannuation tax structure is the best entity for you to build an investment portfolio in the short term as you pay less tax today, the medium term as you pay less tax every year, and the long term when all assets and income become tax-free.

Now consider the only ‘downside’ of using Superannuation to build an investment portfolio: you can’t spend the funds until you reach retirement. But investing is a long term endeavor, so I have no qualms in putting forward the merits of Superannuation.

So how do you get money into your superannuation? Firstly you can use Salary Sacrifice to get pre-tax money in there. This can be helpful to save tax today, but it has low thresholds (found here note this limit includes your mandatory super contributions from your employment).

You can also simply deposit money into super from your bank account as it is after-tax money and the threshold is much higher (found here), however when was the last time you did that?

Raiz again have come to the rescue by bringing this valuable tax entity to the fingertips of the money-smart. All you have to do to start being proactive in using this tax effective vehicle to build your long term asset base is 1) click Settings, 2) click Super Fund and follow the prompts. The simplest way I’ve seen to start using the benefits already afforded to you under law.

Disclaimer: While deep diving into topics and education is great, we have a responsibility to ensure you don’t make any mistakes so please read this statement first:

Superannuation is not an offshore bank account, and the term is used as an entertainment analogy only. Thresholds and super laws are notorious for changing, and the rules change frequently. As such, Clayton Daniel nor Raiz cannot be held responsible for the validity of the information contained in this article, nor the outcome you achieve with this information. This article gives an overview of the tax benefits of superannuation, but it does not reference the returns of the investments within any Superfund. It neither takes into consideration your personal situation or your needs. Therefore the information is general in nature. This article - and indeed any article - is not capable of being used as personal financial advice nor is it intended to be. If this isn’t clear enough, before taking any action with superannuation, get professional advice first. More information can be found here.

Clayton Daniel is a financial commentator best known for reducing decision fatigue through financial automation. He is the author of upcoming book Fund Your Ideal Lifestyle.

Donald Trump has been elected, what next?
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Trump has won, so what happens now. The sun will come up tomorrow. Mums and Dads still go shopping. Children go to school. Workers still go to work and business continue to trade. So economically, nothing has changed and the economic fundamentals of the US economy are fine and improving. 

Social policies will change, as the Republicans have not only won the Presidency but also the House and the Senate. In fact, the Republicans tend to introduce very favourable business policies. Some of the policies will seem strange to Australians (like winding back Obama care) but It is unlikely Republicans Senators and Congressmen, no matter how much they dislike Trump, will block his proposed tax cuts or pro-business policies. 

Stock markets don’t trade on social policy they worry about economic policies and very few saw a clean sweep for the Republicans in this election which means a very pro-business government in the USA. 

America, however will become more protectionist and more withdrawn. This was the outcome regardless of a Democratic or Republican win. This may mean that their foreign policy will become withdrawn with less direct international interference. This may cause Australia to be drawn closer to Asia as trade blocks deals like the TPP (Trans-Pacific Partnership), which pivoted on US involvement, looks now likely fail. This could end up being good for Australia especially as the UK will also be looking for new trading partners. 

Don’t panic. Stick with your investment strategy. We know this is easier said than done and we know it is time & experience that helps with this. We hope the Raiz App can assist you in learning this. 

The markets will now focus on the next move from the Federal Reserve which we expect to be a hike in the December. Especially as the FED will now worry about the possible Republican inflationary policies. But more on this in the coming weeks. 

Are you a risk taker?
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What is risk in Raiz?

Risk is the level of variability you are willing to accept for potential investment returns.  With higher risk, comes greater potential returns but also a larger chance of loss.  

Although every investment involves risk, it is important to consider assets with the potential for higher long-term gains are often associated with greater short-term risk.

It is therefore essential to take into consideration the time frame of your savings goal when selecting an Raiz portfolio that suits you. Are you wanting to use Raiz to save up for a holiday in a few months, or are you in it for the long haul?

Managing Risk with Raiz

Raiz allows you to select one of following 5 risk profiles for your account.

Some people with short-term goals of around a year or less prefer secure assets that have low volatility, stable returns and lower risk, in exchange for smaller potential returns. These type of short term investors are better suited to a more conservative portfolio.

Others with long-term goals of greater than 3 years may be able to afford risky investments in the pursuit of high profit potential and are prepared to accept short-term fluctuations, and will select a more aggressive Raiz portfolio.

Conservative

Conservative portfolios will be weighted toward fixed income and cash based ETFs, typically have lower risk and lower return potential. Investors using the profile may expect to use the money after a 3 or 6 month period.

Moderately Conservative

This portfolio is used by investors concerned with protecting their money. It is associated with low - moderate risk and some potential capital growth. Investors should use this portfolio if they expect to have an investment time frame of about a year.

Moderate

This portfolio has ETF weightings towards Australian and international equities, fixed income and cash. It has moderate capital growth potential and a moderate level of risk. Investors would use this profile if they have no specific savings goal and are just looking to see how much they can accumulate from Raiz features such as Roundups.  These investors expect to have an investment time frame of 2 to 3 years.

Moderately Aggressive

This portfolio has weightings towards international and Australian equities. It involves more risk with the potential for higher returns. Investors are comfortable with volatility and negative returns in the short run. They typically have a 3 - 5 year investment horizon.

Aggressive

This portfolio invests towards ETFs in international and Australian equities. It has high risk and the potential for even higher returns. Similar to the moderately aggressive portfolio, investors should be comfortable with volatility and negative returns in the short term. They should have an investment horizon of 5 - 7 years. 

What does this actually mean for your investments?

Your saving goal should determine your portfolio choice not what you expect the market to do soon. Raiz provides five portfolio choice by varying the weightings of 7 ETFs. You can view these weightings and more details about each ETF by visiting the PDS at https://Raizinvest.com.au/product-disclosure-statement/.

Whatever your goal, Raiz has the portfolio that will suit you.

October 2016
The 80/20 Principle of Investing
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By Clayton Daniel 

Do you know what investing is? Confusing.

To circumvent that issue, you can do what most people do – learn.

Ahh yes. Learning about investing. Such a fantastic topic isn’t it. Perhaps, the more you learn, the better returns you’ll get? Maybe outperform the market? Maybe find the NBT (Next Big Thing)?

I know. I started on this journey over a decade ago. Read a bunch of books. Went to a few classes at uni. Even got a degree! Worked in tax, super, investments, cash flow. Opened up my own shop. Clients came in. I researched portfolios. We discussed those portfolios. These portfolios had ‘Foreign Exposure’ with ‘Counter-Cyclical Hedges’, ‘Active Managers’ that would use ‘Dynamic Asset Allocation’ to ensure ‘Market Trends’ were taken advantage of.

Oh God. It hurts even just to write it all down.

Here’s the thing. The world of investing has taken something that is honestly quite rudimentary and fluffed it up to be something it isn’t. Or to put simply, we spend 80% of our time, effort and resources aiming for that last 20%.

What do I mean?

I mean, it’s not a surprise to anyone in the greater investment industry to spout off this fact ‘the majority of active managers underperform the benchmark’. Now what that financy-pants language means is that the majority of professional investment teams do worse than if they had just done nothing.

That’s right.

For all the posturing, all the research, all the education, all the fanfare, all the talk, all the mumbo-jumbo………………. Most of the time it’s not only for naught, but detrimental.

That’s a pretty condemning statistic. Could you imagine if the medical industry had these kind of results? Could you imagine if ‘go home and rest’ had a higher chance of survival for cancer patients than having treatment? We would be up in arms.

But the investment community has a different opinion. And that is because everyone is convinced they can pick that top 20%. And so that is what everyone is aiming for. To ‘beat the market’ by being smart enough to get in the top 20%. It makes sense. Everyone has an ego. And everyone has hubris – especially when it’s other people’s money…

But here’s the thing. What if you said ‘no more’. What would happen? What if you stepped out of the hustle and bustle of trying to get that last 20% and were happy with the 80%. What kind of world would that look like? What kind of research, education, monitoring and ongoing effort would that require from you?

Or put simply, how much of your attention would you have to give your investments if you were happy with 80% of the possible returns?

I’m sure you’re probably anticipating the answer to be 20% of the effort. I mean, that’s how it normally goes doesn’t it. Well not quite. It’s less than that.

How about one percent?

One percent effort is all you need. And even that is pushing it. If you’re happy to just go along with the ups and downs of the market, you don’t have to do anything. At all. Once the purchase has been made, there is zero upkeep for you.

Let me explain how this works.

Like everything else in finance, the solution comes in the form of an acronym.

ETF – Exchange Traded Funds. Really simply, ETF’s are an algorithm that trades stocks. Sounds complex, but it isn’t. Most ETF’s have a VERY simple trading strategy. The algorithms aren’t looking for undervalued hidden gems, or for promising speculative mining stocks. They aren’t looking what pays a good dividend, or any other investment strategy.

All they do is blindly buy what they are programmed to buy. And while these algorithms are starting to get more complex, the majority of money invested in ETFs are in the S&P 500 (http://etfdb.com/compare/market-cap/).

And what is the S&P 500? It’s the top 500 publicly traded companies in the States. That’s it. The algorithm simply buys the biggest 500 companies. If company 500 drops down to 505 it’s sold. If company 550 goes up to 400, it’s purchased. Simple. Indiscriminate investing. The Aussie version is called the ASX200. So instead of the top 500, it’s the top 200.

Now, this is why I like ETF investing.

It takes 1% knowledge and effort to get in, and the algorithm ensures you’re only ever invested in the top companies. Even in 20 years from now, say if 50% of the companies that are currently in the S&P500 or the ASX200 were to go bankrupt and fall off the face of the world – you don’t have to know about any of it, and you don’t have to take any action.

The ETF trading formula does it all for you.

In addition, as this is the simplest, easiest to monitor trading strategy that takes so little money to run, it is by far the cheapest way to invest.

So the easiest way to invest, is also the cheapest way to invest. Winning.

But not only that, this whole easy/cheap way of investing is backed up with a Nobel prize. If you want to look into it more, it’s called Modern Portfolio Theory (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Modern_portfolio_theory)

Like all theories, it absolutely has it’s detractors, and the detractors have a point. But I’m not suggesting this passive ETF investment strategy because I think you’ll get the best returns. Absolutely not. This article is all about 80/20, and while you’ll never get in the top 20% of investment returns with this long term investment strategy, do you really want to spend 80% of your time, money, resources etc. going after that last 20%.

Nope. Not me.

I have exited my ego stage left when it comes to investing. I used to think I could out-perform the market, and at times I absolutely have, but to do it consistently is nigh on impossible.

And here is why you shouldn’t be looking for that last 20% either - because it’s just not a good use of your time or your headspace. I’ve written extensively on decision fatigue (http://www.fundyourideallifestyle.com.au/decision-fatigue/), and I’m a big proponent on the less you try to think about money, the better you do in every other area of your professional and personal life.

So how do you get your hands on these ETF’s? Well you can go out and open a brokerage account, go online and find a risk profiling tool to see what mix of ETFs you should have. Then decide which ETF you should buy, save up at least $500 for each ETF, go back to your broker, pay the brokerage fee, and have a portfolio you can log on to once every six months to look at.

Or you can download the Raiz app, go about your day, spend your money, and have the roundups get invested for you.

You decide.

By Clayton Daniel

Financial commentator and author of upcoming book Fund Your Ideal Lifestyle.

How to eat an elephant
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By Ash McAuliffe

Q: How do you eat an elephant? A: One bite at a time

It’s a dad joke but a good one none the less, and it stems from a quote attributed to Creighton Abrams: “When eating an elephant, take one bit at a time”.  Not only is this one of my favourite quotes, but it is one of the underlying philosophies of the financial advice that I give my clients.

“In my time in helping people hit their financial goals, one trend that stands out is what I call the ‘Back-Burner effect’.”

The conversation that I had this week with a new client was typical of so many conversations that I have had with my clients over the years. He had a financial goal and we were discussing the best way to get there and how this goal should be prioritised against his other goals.  This was his biggest goal, and thankfully had the longest time frame attached but as my experience tells me, this meant that this was the goal that he was least likely to achieve.

“Letting a big important goal sneak up on you is a Financial FAIL.”

In my time in helping people hit their financial goals, one trend that stands out is what I call the ‘Back-Burner effect’.  This is where the less immediate goals lose significance because they’re off in the distance, and regardless of their importance, they don’t get the attention that the immediate ‘in-your-face’ goals do so the result is that these big, important, long-term goals are neglected…. Which allows them to sneak up on you.  

Letting a big important goal sneak up on you is a Financial FAIL.

Back to my conversation with my client… his exact words were “this is 15 years away so I think I’ll sort these other things, get them out of the way, then in about 5-10 years, I’ll really smash this one”.  It’s safe to say that he wasn’t really ready for my reaction (truth be told, neither was I) I stood up and at the same time I slammed my hand on the table and said “NO WAY!…  This is an elephant, you need to take your first bite now”

“what is underestimated is the power of developing a habit of chipping away at your goals”

He had absolutely no idea what I was talking about… but who could blame him?

The $100 per month that this guy can put towards his big, long-term goal (aka: the elephant) today, is so much more powerful than the $500 per month that he will maybe put towards it in 10 years.  This is because of the magic of compound returns, but what is underestimated is the power of developing a habit of chipping away at your goals.  Taking one bite at a time.

What I tell my clients… repeatedly… is that whatever their goal, they need to start now, even if it means starting small.

There are so many cliché quotes/examples that I can give… “a journey of 1,000 mile starts with a single step”.. ‘be the tortoise, not the hare’… give your goals a ‘death by a million cuts’, but the lesson remains….start.

Start now, start small if you have to, but take one small step towards your goal every single day.  You will get there sooner, I promise.

Ash McAuliffe CFP

The Asset Lab
COMPETITION TERMS & CONDITIONS:

 1.      An active Acorns Grow Australia Account must be held (account balance greater than $5). Acorns account holders hold valid accounts as set out in the product disclosure statement found on the website: www.acornsau.com.au.

2.      Entries open Thursday 13th October 2016 at 5pm and entries close Thursday 20th  October 2016 at 5pm. To enter one must comment on the designated post with the “reason why they are saving.” The finalists will be selected by an independent adjudicator.

3.      Four of the finalists will receive a $50.00 credit in their active Acorns Grow Australia Investment Account. The winner from the five finalists will receive $300 invested into their Acorns Account.

4.      Finalists will be announced on Friday 21st of October 2016 and the Grand Prize winner announced on Friday 28th of October. Winners will be announced directly through Facebook.

5. Finalists must contact Acorns via madison@acornsgrow.com.au with the email address connected with their personal Acorns account. The prize amounts will be made available in their Acorns within 3 days of this date.

6.      The permit number in the format “NSW Permit No. LTPS/16/08287.”

7.      This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Facebook. 

8.      The competition is promoted by by Acorns Grow Australia Limited, Level 11/2 Bulletin Place Sydney 2000 NSW, 1300 754 748. ABN 26 604 402 815, who is the Authorised Representative of AFSL 434776. The Acorns product will be issued in Australia by Instreet Investment Limited (ACN 128 813 016 AFSL 434776) and promoted by Acorns Grow Australia Limited (ACN 604 402 815). A Product Disclosure Statement dated 27 May 2016 for this product is available on the Acorns website and App. A person should read and consider the Product Disclosure Statement in deciding whether or not to acquire and continue to hold interests in the product. The risks of investing in this product are fully set out in the Product Disclosure Statement, and include the risks that would ordinarily apply to investing.

9.      “Acorns” and “Invest the Change” are registered trademarks of Acorns Grow, Inc. 

NSW Permit No. LTPS/16/08287

What would happen to the markets if Donald Trump were to become president?
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It’s looking less and less likely as time goes on, but we have been thinking a bit about what might happen in the markets if Donald Trump were to be elected President of the USA.

He hasn’t exactly inspired investors, and indeed the markets seem to be reacting positively as his chances of being elected diminish. But are they making a mountain out of a molehill? A good place to start is by looking at another big political event in 2016, Brexit.

When Britain voted to leave the European Union in June this year, the markets were sent into panic mode. We saw the markets fall, then for a relative short period movement up and down, as investors decided how they felt about Brexit. After this period, everyone seemed to realise that Britain wouldn’t leave the European Union any time soon, that a Brexit takes time, and that the world wasn’t really burning down. The markets settled back and even rallied higher than the pre-Brexit levels and calmness was restored.

Why is this important?

Whilst Donald Trump becoming President would certainly cause some uncertainty, it is unlikely that he will be able to dramatically affect the USA or business as many seem to predict. He does not have control of congress, he does not have support of much of his own party and as President Obama found out, it is difficult to enact significant changes or allocate funds for new projects – such as building a wall between Mexico and USA - with this dynamic.

So expect some short term volatility if the unlikely happens and Donald Trump becomes President, but as we always remind Raiz investors, remain calm and stick to a disciplined investment strategy!

Important Information:

This information is general in nature and does not take into account any person’s particular investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should not act on this information.  The information is based on assumptions or market conditions and may change without notice. This may impact the accuracy of the information.

6 Ways to Save This Silly Season
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  1. After the fun of Christmas is over, many of us are left with a hefty bill or a ton of guilt in the New Year. It can be hard to avoid over spending in the festive season, but saving in the run up will help soften the blow for the rest of your summer.

    It can be difficult to fund Christmas festivities and gifts with just your December pay check alone – so it makes sense to be prepared. The Raiz philosophy of saving small amounts regularly can apply when preparing for the silly season - a small amount over a few months can make a big difference.

    According to ASIC, Australians spend on average $1, 079 over the holiday season! This includes food, presents, travel and decorations, among other expenses. Their research also reveals that during the year the average Australian spends $32 a week on meals out in restaurants, $161 on recreation costs and $44 on clothing and footwear. Over the next 10 week period in the run up to the holidays, that adds up to $2370 in ‘extra’ costs.  

    If you make a conscious decision to cut spending and save the difference in preparation for the silly season – that’s the Christmas cost covered.

    Money tips from Raiz on how to save this Christmas:

    1.       Make a list and check it twice - start budgeting early! ASIC believe that only 57% of Australians set a Xmas budget, and then only 4 in 5 stick to it.

    2.      Automate those Christmas savings with a Recurring Deposit function offered by Raiz

    3.      Try and avoid paying for Xmas fun on credit, you will thank yourself when you start 2017 free from holiday debt

    4.      Plan and prepare your purchases– prices are always jacked up in December!

    5.      Consider starting some cheaper Christmas traditions – picnics in the park over fancy lunches, Kris Kringle over individual presents for every family member etc.

    6.      Look for Christmas deals and hacks – keep a special eye out of Raiz Found Money Christmas promotion launching in December to boost your savings when finding the perfect Christmas gift.  

You don’t need to get it to make it!
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By Clayton Daniel

I was in South America a month ago visiting Machu Picchu with my dad. The bloke is a mad dog old school traveller but was recently diagnosed with Parkinson’s. As such we made plans to tick off the final item on his bucket-list together.

It was awesome. Although between the both of us we have nearly seen every corner of the globe, we had never travelled together. It meant a lot to both of us, and I hope we get to do it again.

Now before you hit the edge of the Amazon jungle and start the journey to the mountain top ruins, the last main city you come across is Cuzco. Cuzco is a strange melting pot of traditional Peruvian life, significant religious influence and tourists.

And even though there are tourists, the good news is the city doesn’t bend its own culture to appease us like Thailand or Bali. As such it still seems authentically Peruvian. It’s mostly safe (although I was robbed there five years previously on a backpacking sojourn under a higher level of inebriation – I consider it my own fault), and many of the buildings are from Inca times or early Spanish settlement.

I’m trying my best to set the scene because there was one massive difference between this visit and my first visit five years ago – large numbers of people standing in one corner of the town all on their phones.

Okay, so I’m sure you’ve heard of this Pokemon game. It took something like a week to become the most downloaded mobile game of all time. And I’m all for a video games getting people out of the house. The only problem was, I didn’t see anyone interested in their surroundings, all I saw was people looking down to an item right in front of them.

This event didn’t really impact me as it was the first time I had seen it, and thought it was a weird Peruvian anomaly. Alas, when I turned up in New York only a couple of weeks later I saw the exact same thing – just more people this time.

As I walked up to the south western entrance to Central Park, I noticed I was surrounded by hundreds of people staring at their phone. In disbelief I realised that again, everyone was playing Pokemon.

In my first ‘senior moment’ as a thirty-three-year-old, I pushed a small amount of air out of my nose which can only be described as respiratory disdain and thought to myself ‘why are these people so focused on the small thing in front of them, when they have all of this to experience’?

“The issue is what is constantly being taught by formal education, and by the media is that you have to ‘pay attention’ to your money” 

Thankfully as I choose not to hold grudges towards large non-descript masses of people casually enjoying their lives, I was easily able to continue with my exploration plans, but I did take away this story as it works so wonderfully as an analogy for how we interact with money.

The issue is what is constantly being taught by formal education, and by the media is that you have to ‘pay attention’ to your money. Staring at the amount in front of you is more important than the bigger picture – the outcome of your money. The passive point being, the more attention you pay to your money, the better you will be with it.

“Of course if you pay attention to your money you will be better with it…. The big trick. The point every financial commentator misses is this: you don’t have to”

Now, caveat. This is actually correct. I can’t claim otherwise because I would be lying. Of course if you pay attention to your money you will be better with it. I’m a perfect example of this. Ten years ago I knew nothing about money. I dedicated my life to understanding it, and now I’m here.

But guess what. The big trick. The point every financial commentator misses is this: you don’t have to.

My entire life for the last decade has been dedicated to understanding money. I did an accounting degree, worked as an accountant before turning to financial advice. A decade later, I know a thing or two about dollar signs followed by numerals.

I had the type of personality to do so. But what if you don’t? What if you don’t want to pay attention? Does this have to mean you won’t be successful with your money?

“Thinking about money all the time on top of thinking about your career, your family, and your own personal goals adds up. It’s called decision fatigue and is the plague of our generation.”

I no longer subscribe to the concept you have to become a monetary version of a Pokemon player. To have your head down, only concentrating on the thing in front of you. And the reason is, you probably find it all sensationally boring. And that’s okay.

Thinking about money all the time on top of thinking about your career, your family, and your own personal goals adds up. It’s called decision fatigue and is the plague of our generation. In fact unless you work with money, you should be doing whatever you can to put as much distance between you and it so you can focus on things that are important to you.

Money is simply a facilitator of what you want out of life. What you want out of life – your ideal lifestyle – should be the focus. Your money will ultimately fill in the spaces to meet the direction you want to go.

If you want a family, mortgage, a new car on lease – you will get that.

If you want time to tick off a bucketlist with your old man before he shakes down the mountain – you will get that.

If you want to become rich at the sacrifice of family and time to yourself – you will get that.

“Whatever you choose to do with your life, the good news is you do not need to understand money as well as Warren Buffet in order to wield it….There are shortcuts”

We can’t have everything – you only get one life after all – but I’m a big believer in everyone getting what they want out of life. There’s no right, and no wrong, there is only those who have sat down to think about it, and those who let the decisions happen to them without much thought.

Whatever you choose to do with your life, the good news is you do not need to understand money as well as Warren Buffet in order to wield it. You don’t need to dedicate a decade of your life. You don’t need to stare at a screen infront of you and miss the bigger picture. There are shortcuts.

Firstly, decide what you want out of life. That’s a big point in a small sentence I know – but it still deserves your time. If you don’t, the easy and default answer is simply ‘more’.

Second, put aside an amount for yourself to spend each week to fund your ideal lifestyle today.

Lastly, put aside an amount for yourself to spend later in life when you no longer work. Medical science is getting quite good, so you’re not going to die anytime soon. You’ll want some money to fund your ideal lifestyle in the future also. And the best way to invest is low cost/low tax environments – but that’s an article for next time.

Clayton Daniel author of upcoming book Fund Your Ideal Lifestyle 

August 2016
Money Doesn’t Make Life Better – Money Management Does
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I have a confession. Even though I’m a personal finance guy - I still waste money.

Okay, that actually feels quite good to say out loud.

I mean, I do fairly well with my money management, but I am no Patron Saint of Savings.

I did however meet one last night. And while in some quarters this may be seen as a laudable pastime, I have to say by the sounds of it, the juice just isn’t worth the squeeze.

Let me share with you a conversation I had over dinner last night. As a bunch of guys in our late twenties / early thirties, the topic of money came up as we critiqued the latest (and greatest) iteration of my upcoming book’s cover. With that came questions about what my career has been in the personal finance space over the last few years, and then one of them casually popped out this sentence:

‘I save 75% of my after tax income’.

What? Excuse me? As the rest of us queried his definition, I sat in disbelief.

How can someone in their late twenties, living in a capital city in Australia, survive on 25% of their after tax income? But despite our best efforts to get him to ‘fess up to his obviously incorrect calculations, he stuck by it. He said his goal was to retire by 40, in which case he had 12 years to put money aside.

Now, I for one am not going to diminish his efforts. To his credit, he was the only one not to join us at Baxter’s Inn later that night, so perhaps he wasn’t facetious, but I will question one thing - his intention of retiring at age 40.

It’s this part of the story which makes the least sense to me. As someone used to teasing out lifestyle plans, and bringing to light the inherent conflicts which exist for everyone, I found the concept of someone young and full of ambition putting forward the goal of ceasing to work as young as possible to be a complete non-sequitur.

And here in lies why money management is far more important than money itself. The uncomfortable truth is – it’s only those who can work hard enough and smart enough, and are successful enough at an early age are able to retire at age 40. And if I was to present to you the exact type of person who doesn’t want to sit around all day doing nothing – well it’s the exact same type of person.

So this young gent, earning lots of money, hard working, and not spending any money is going to probably achieve his goal of retiring early. The only problem is, when he gets there – he’s not going to want it. There will be too many well ingrained habits of early mornings and full days for him to simply wave goodbye to it all.

I don’t mean to call this guy out all alone, he is just another one of us. He’s caught up in the emotional effects of money, has chosen a direction, but hasn’t really played the end scenario out in his mind. At some point he learned of the concept of an early retirement and had been impressed with the idea. As anyone does, he would have went about figuring out how to achieve it, and set the process in motion.

But it’s a half baked idea. Early retirement is certainly not what it’s cracked up to be. Infact most people are forced into retirement, they aren’t looking for it. Generally, people want to do whatever they can to stay active, stay important, and be productive as long as possible.

If your goal is to ‘own 150 properties’ by the time you’re 50 so you can retire early – you can do it. Vendor leasing isn’t exactly a dark art and I’m sure you can figure it out. If your goal is to continuously travel the world and never get swept up in the stress of city living – you can do it. There are endless ways to make a few bucks online these days.

Whatever your plan is – that’s great – just make sure your behavior and lifestyle adjustments match the outcome. For our young and successful hero who wants to retire at age 40, all that is going to happen is he is going to miss out of some pivotal life stages with friends while his asset base grows, only to find it wasn’t worth it when he gets to age 40.

So what does your ideal lifestyle look like? What is it you want to build an asset base for? Knowing this, and thinking it through clearly will not only give you a target to hit, but ensure you are spending your time as well as your money in a way that benefits you the most.

First thing is to decide what you want out of life without any external pressures pushing you in any direction. Then you figure out what to do with your money to make it happen.

And building a large asset base will absolutely be a part of ensuring you live your ideal lifestyle in the future also, so how do you go about doing this.

Well, once there was a time where you needed a real estate agents, solicitors, stock brokers, or financial planners to invest.

These days you need a smart phone and the Raiz app.

One is expensive, time consuming, inaccessible, and overly complicated.

One is cheap, quick, transparent, and easy.

I’ll let you decide which one’s which.

- Clayton

Author of upcoming book Fund Your Ideal Lifestyle

www.fundyourideallifestyle.com.au

Are your a risk taker?
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What is risk in Raiz?

Risk is the level of variability you are willing to accept for investment returns. With higher risk, comes greater expected return but also a larger chance of loss .Although every investment involves risk, it is important to note assets with the potential for higher long-term gains are often associated with greater short-term risk.It is therefore essential to select an Raiz portfolio that suits your risk tolerance and investment situation.

Managing Risk with Raiz

Raiz allows you to select one of following five risk profiles for your account. Some people prefer secure assets that have low volatility, stable returns and lower risk, in exchange for smaller potential capital gains. Especially if their time horizon for investing is for a short term goal. These type of investors tend to select conservative portfolios. Others like the thrill of risky investments in the pursuit of high profit and are prepared to accept short-term fluctuations, will select a more aggressive Raiz portfolio.  They may be prepared to accept this risk because their time horizon for investing is long.

Conservative

Conservative portfolios will be heavily weighted toward fixed income and cash based ETFs, these typically have lower risk and lower returns profile. Investors using the profile may expect to use the money after a 3-month period.

Moderately Conservative

This portfolio is used by investors concerned with protecting their money. It is associated with low - moderate risk and some capital growth. Investors should use this portfolio if they expect to have an investment time frame of about a year.

Moderate

This portfolio has ETF weightings towards Australian and international equities, fixed income and cash. It has moderate capital growth and a moderate level of risk. Investors would use this profile if they expect to have an investment time frame of 2 years.

 Moderately Aggressive

This portfolio has weightings towards international and Australian equities. It involves more risk with the potential for higher returns. Investors are comfortable with volatility and negative returns in the short run. They typically have a 3 - 5 year investment horizon.

 Aggressive

This portfolio invests towards ETFs in international and Australian equities. It has high risk and the potential for even higher returns. Similar to the moderately aggressive portfolio, investors should be comfortable with volatility and negative returns in the short term. They should have an investment horizon of 5 - 7 years. 

What does this actually mean for your investments?

Raiz adjusts your investments to your portfolio choice by varying the weightings of 7 ETFs. You can view these weightings and more details about each ETF by visiting the PDS at https://Raizinvest.com.au/product-disclosure-statement/.

Whatever your attitude towards investing, Raiz has the portfolio that will suit you. You can change your portfolio at any time by going click ‘portfolio’ in the right hand drop down menu. You can also use the calculator which predicted value of your account, and the associated risks over time based on your portfolio choice.

Search for yield pays dividends for Aussie equities and currency
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As we enter the 3rd week of August, the Northern Hemisphere is on holiday and it is no surprise that the markets are confounding investor expectations, as they are meant to do in August.

In the current low interest rate environment, it is all about yield!

Yield is the income return on an investment, such as interest, a bond coupon, or a dividend from and equity investment.

Negative yield in debt means that the holder of a bond loses money on their investment. With the amount of debt in negative yield now at a staggering $13tn, it is no wonder that the main driving force for equities will be the global hunt for yield. Which in turn is seeing increased investment into the local Aussie market.

Thanks to years of continued investor activism, top Australian companies pay higher dividends and help produce one of the highest yielding markets in the world. Compared to the S&P 500, which yields about 2.3%, the yield from ASX 200 companies is attractive, resulting in foreign inflows and leading Australian companies being included in global yield ETFs listed in the US.

…and it’s not just equity yield that is attractive in Australia, with AAA-rated government bonds producing significant yield when compared to negative yields you would receive from both countries and corporates with lower ratings.

Foreign investment in the Australian market are also having an effect on the Aussie dollar, which is on the rise despite the RBA cutting rates to record lows in August. This rise in the dollar, coupled with mortgage lenders not passing on the full rate cut to borrowers, has seen the RBAs recent decision completely wasted. If it is a weakening in the dollar that the RBA are interested in, then they may think twice about cutting again. 

Investors will be keeping a keen eye on the Australian employment report this week for an indication to the strength of the economy!

Important Note: The information is general advice and does not take into account any person’s particular investment objectives, financial situation or investment needs. If you are an investor, you should consult your licensed adviser before acting on any information contained in this website.

Investors only: The information in this Document is confidential it must not be reproduced, distributed or disclosed to any other person unless it is part of their statement of advice. The information may be based on assumptions or market conditions and may change without notice. This may impact the accuracy of the information. In no circumstances is the information in this Document to be used by, or presented to, a person for the purposes of making a decision about a financial product or class of products.

General advice warning: The information contained in this Document is general information only. It has been prepared without taking account any potential investors’ financial situation, objectives or needs and the appropriateness of this information needs to be considered in that context. No responsibility or liability is accepted by Instreet or any third party who has contributed to this Document for any of the information contained herein or for any action taken by you or any of your officers, employees, agents or associates.

It’s all about hitting your splits
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Any marathon runner will tell you: You don’t think about all 42 kilometres at once. That would be too overwhelming. Instead, picture the race in chunks: 5km, 10km, or even one kilometre at a time. Manageable chunks.

This same philosophy can be useful when saving for your post-work life, especially when it’s still decades away. While the idea of saving $1 million may feel like a near-impossible feat, putting away just $150 or so per month in your 20s seems completely reasonable—and that still may get you to the million-dollar mark by retirement age, provided you’re disciplined, start early and hit your “splits,” as runners would say.

Just get started, save regularly, experience the power of compounding returns and learn about market risks– and track your progress. 

For the sake of simplicity, let’s set aside inflation, fees, taxes and dividends. Yes, those things are important, but it’s more important that you just get started, save regularly, experience the power of compounding returns and learn about market risks– and track your progress.

Here’s what this example could look like:

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Okay, deep breaths. I’m going to walk you through these targets, and explain why they’re more reachable than you might think—and why, if you’ve hit 30 and haven’t saved that much, it’s not too late.

The first thing you’ll probably notice about this chart is that your money doubles every seven years. I’m basing that on an investing concept known as the rule of 72, which says that if you earn 7.2 percent interest annually your money doubles in 10 years. Roughly, the reverse is true, as well: If you earn 10 percent on your money, it doubles in 7.2 years.

You also likely noticed that the larger you’re starting point in each doubling cycle, the larger the growth….That means the most important consideration is starting the doubling clock. 

For the milestones listed above to work, you’ll likely need growth from both equity market returns (say, 7 percent) and additional cash saved (3 percent). Any percentage variation works—bigger investment returns, less cash added; more cash added, smaller returns—so long as you get to about 10 percent, your money will double every seven years or so. 

You also likely noticed that the larger you’re starting point in each doubling cycle, the larger the growth. Under the example above, the balances really start to grow—to $200,000, $400,000 and beyond—during your 40s and 50s. That means the most important consideration is starting the doubling clock. If you embarked on this particular milestone chart at 37 instead of 30, for example, you may be missing $800,000 by retirement age.

Now, let’s talk through my assumptions, and how I got there. Again, it’s not that difficult to get from $50,000 to $100,000 in just seven years. You can do it by earning 7 percent in returns—a fair guideline for market returns—and contributing about $150 per month to your account.

Note the difference saving regularly makes, by contributing larger cash you may significantly reduce the time to double your money.

it’s entirely possible to start a humble retirement account, add $150 per month in your 20s and 30s and still be on target to retire a millionaire. You just have to hit your splits. 

Another thing to keep in mind about your contributions: As you get older, the amount of cash that must be added in order to keep up the doubling effect—the 3 percent—needs to grow substantially. But you’re likely making more money, so that’s not unrealistic. For example, between ages 37-44, you’ll grow your retirement balance from $100,000 to $200,000 by earning 7-percent returns, for example, and depositing at least $250 per month (based on 3 percent of your starting balance, and assuming you’re getting 7 percent returns). Then from ages 44-51, your balance will balloon from $200,000 to $400,000 with 7 percent returns and at least $500 in monthly deposits (3 percent of $200,000 divided by 12).

Raiz fully automates this process, with the Roundup and Automatic Investment feature you can hit your splits whilst living your everyday life. 

So yes, it’s entirely possible to start a humble retirement account, add $150 per month in your 20s and 30s and still be on target to retire a millionaire. You just have to hit your splits.

It is time to start thinking about saving for retirement, just like you would if training for a marathon.  This is where Raiz can comes in.  Instead of just waking up one day and trying to sprint 42km, you need to train, and start working on your financial fitness. Raiz fully automates this process, with the Roundup and Automatic Investment feature you can hit your splits whilst living your everyday life.

But none of those facts detract from the undeniable power of regular savings, time and compounding. A journey of a mile begins with the first step. A journey to $1 million begins with your first $100 investment.

Important Information

The examples above are for display purposes only and to illustrate a point – actual returns will be different and could be significantly less than the examples.  

This blog was written by Raiz Limited– Authorised Representative of AFSL 434776. The Raiz product is issued in Australia by Instreet Investment Limited (ACN 128 813 016 AFSL 434776) and promoted by Raiz Limited (ACN 604 402 815). A Product Disclosure Statement dated 27 May 2016 for this product is available on the Raiz website and App.

A person should read and consider the Product Disclosure Statement in deciding whether or not to acquire and/or continue to hold interests in the product. The risks of investing in this product are fully set out in the Product Disclosure Statement, and include the risks that would ordinarily apply to investing.

July 2016
The Design Behind Raiz
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We at Raiz take great pride in the design of our app – and having won the 2016 Good Design Best Digital Design and multiple national awards in the US it looks like our designers’ hard work is paying off.  

We’ve turned to Raiz’ VP of Design in the USA, David Keegan, to let you know a bit more on the design of Raiz, and why it’s so important.

Why is design important?

“Design is how people see and engage with a product. This is important because it’s how people use and interact with the technology behind Raiz. We think a lot about ways we can make Raiz beautiful and delightful while at the same time easy to use and understandable.”

What is the most important thing to consider when designing an app?

“The most important thing to consider when designing an app is to think about how people are actually going to use it. Above all else we strive for simplicity. When designing mobile apps people are often on the go, using their phones here and there hundreds of times throughout the day. Everything from the signup process to depositing money, or simply checking your balance needs to be quick and easy, never more than one or two taps away.”

What are the key elements to the design of Raiz?

“The most important element to the design of Raiz is its simplicity. Raiz makes it easy and streamlined to get signed up, and to start saving and investing. We also use beautiful graphics the help make the app enjoyable. Investing is often an emotional experience so we try to infuse the app with calming natural colours and gradients.”

What other apps, products, or brands do you admire?

“My favourite brands are ones that embrace elegant and simplistic design. Some of my favourite brands that exemplify this are of course Apple as well as Audi and Tesla. I try to draw inspiration from these brands, with a dash of Lamborghini colours for aspiration 😉 I constantly keep these brands in mind when working on the branding and design of Raiz.”

Let us know on our Facebook and Twitter pages what you think of our design, and what other brands inspire you!

FEELING BULLISH?: The best 10 uses for your tax refund
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By the Superfitdad

It’s the end of the Australian financial year which means, for those who have incurred personal expenses in the course of their business, it’s tax return season and, ideally, tax refund season.

Much like the truffle season in Alba or the Indian wedding season for Gold prices, this can mean a flurry of expectant spending or, at the very least, plotting about what spending might ensue, assuming things work out favourably.

And irrespective of whether you have a tax refund in the offing, any time you have a lump sum coming your way, it’s a great opportunity to start building or growing your asset base.

So, in no particular order, here are some things to consider.

1. Clear Debts (Especially Credit Card)

You might think: so what? A measly $1k on the credit card. No need to worry about that. Let’s buy some shares or a holiday or some fun – pick your poison!

NO. Not on your nelly, my friend. The reason? Unless you have an interest-free card or have transferred a balance, you’ll be paying 15-25% on the credit card debt. All your other investments will NOT be paying you anywhere near this much. At least on a consistent basis.

2. Pay Down Mortgage / Save For A Mortgage

Paying down your mortgage might not seem sexy. In fact, there an entire industry geared around enticing you to do other things with you money. Ignore them, though, and seriously consider paying down your home loan.

But being mortgage-free, early, is a pretty cool thought. If you don’t have own property yet, start thinking how you can accelerate the process.

3. Invest In Yourself

How many new skills have your learned since you were 25? For many of us it’s hard enough mastering the meagre skills we’ve been given or acquired so far. But investing in ourselves and our future by cultivating our skill-set or talent stack is probably the most important investment we can make.

To a certain extent, it doesn’t even matter what you’re learning. Whether it’s learning a foreign language, taking a course on public speaking, learning to write code, the key thing is to be challenging and stimulating ourselves to develop and grow. Do this and, almost by osmosis, your performance in all areas will soar.

4. Top Up Your Superannuation / Pension Fund

Propping up your pension with an after-tax lump sum isn’t as attractive as chucking in pre-tax and reaping the tax benefits offered by salary sacrificing, say.

And, it’s not really sexy.

BUT…

Don’t you want to have a comfortable retirement, especially given that there’s no telling how long we might live nowadays? Also, once you’ve tucked it away in your pension, it’s there for a very long time, giving it a very love-you-long-time cogitation period. Which, in plain English, means it’s got plenty of time to grow and accumulate.

5. Become An Owner

Feeling emboldened now that you’re newly flush? Hit the markets. Not the Farmer’s Markets, silly. The Stock Markets. A good way to get some exposure to the markets and become an owner (in a very tiny way, of course) of some of the world’s biggest and best companies is via index funds.

Index funds are popular because they don’t carry the same kind of costs associated with actively managed funds. [Question: have you ever met a poor fund manager? No, me neither. It’s because your fees are paying for the Jag, the Rolex and their kid’s school fees.]

Not only are index funds cheaper than managed funds – often by 1-2.5% per year – they routinely outperform the funds with managers. Strange, huh? So if you’re looking for a proven way to create and grow wealth over a long time-frame (10+ years), the stock markets and index-linked funds tread a proven path.

Or you could…

6. Buy Individual Stocks

Not for the faint-hearted, this can be an exciting ride.

If you get a tip from a mate about a firm that makes mining valves and supplies a firm who’ve just found a massive unknown copper deposit somewhere in the middle of Whup-Whup, well, you could be quids in.

You’re unlikely to get any information before hundreds and thousands of others have that same information. That hot tip your mate gave you has been through brokers and dealers and market-makers. People will be all over it.

The golden rule, though: always tick the box to have your dividends invested. Never deviate from this and you should be okay [assuming your stock pays a dividend].

7. Give It Away

Percentage of people ticking this option: a big fat zero [I’d love to be proved wrong here, by the way]. But imagine how good it would make you feel.

To help those less fortunate in a meaningful way. How absolutely magnificent.

GIVE WELL ranks charities according to how effective they are with their donations. This means you can give to charities that have the least waste and give the most to the intended beneficiaries. At the very least consider making a monthly donation via direct debit to one of the Give Well top-rankers.

8. Travel

They say nothing broadens the mind like travel.

Which is tricky because if you’re a new-ish parent, the idea of transporting your chaotic sleep-deprived existence to somewhere unfamiliar where you don’t know the name of the barista or the nearest 24 hour petrol station for the late-night banana dash. But whether you’re encumbered by kids or not, it’s never that bad.

It’s actually wonderful. The whole family seem to recognise the importance of the trip and improve their behaviour tenfold.

9. Buy Art

If none of the options listed before appeal, then there are a couple of other options to consider.

I select them because they have the potential to be appreciating assets.

If you can cultivate an appreciation of art, I think it can be useful. Finding something (as in, a piece of art) that resonates with you and can calm you when seas get stormy can be a real comfort.

10. Buy Jewellery

This is basically: a watch.

As we’ve seen there are a myriad of options and we’re in danger of suffering from a Paradox Of Choice when it comes to using our tax refund wisely.

There are other things I couldda and shouldda mentioned – But, in the interests of expedience, we’ll leave it there for now.

At the very least, buy something that will appreciate and grow or will help you or someone else appreciate and grow. As long as you do that, you’ll be winning.

By the Superfitdad

Tackling Tax
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The new financial year has begun, and the tax-man is knocking at your door again. Here are some key tips to send him on his way with a smile:

Ensuring you have all the accurate information makes the tax return process that much smoother. Before you start, make sure you have all that paperwork ready to go. Hopefully you’ve kept all necessary information very organised since throughout the year…

Some of the key documents you’ll be needing are:

 Your Income:

·         Payment summaries

·         Bank statements

·         Shares, unit trusts or managed funds statements

·         Buy and sell investment statements

·         Records from your rental property

·         Foreign income details

Your Expenses:

·         Private health insurance policy statement

·         Donation receipts

·         Educational records and receipts

·         Investment property receipts

·         Your spouse’s income and expenses

·         Union membership

·         Work related expenses

It’s important to note that since July 1st 2015, there have been changes to the Medicare levy and private health insurance rebates. They have frozen the levy surcharge at the 2014-2015 level for 3 years.

Deductions are awesome. They allow you to claim work-related costs against your tax, these can include sun glasses, computers, vehicles etc. Although, one must remember that these expenses must be:

Real

– you must have spent the money yourself for the product or service

Relevant

– they must be related to your job

Recorded

– in the form of a receipt

As an Raiz investor, any realized capital gains/losses through Raiz will be tax liable.  We will produce an annual tax statement for all investors by the end of July. These statements will contain all details necessary for filling your tax returns.  

 If you have any further questions about your tax statements please do not hesitate to email the Investor Success Team at support@Raizinvest.com.au or alternatively call us on 1300 754 748.

Undecided election leads to an undecided market
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The focus of the Australian market is on the result – or rather lack of result – from the weekend’s federal election. It appears the most likely outcome is a hung parliament although we may have to wait some time until we know for certain. Unfortunately, the Australian Electoral Commission has made it clear that it won’t begin counting any more votes until Tuesday, leaving buyers and sellers in an information vacuum.

“Such uncertainty is never good for markets…. However, the Australian economy remains strong.”

As the possibility of a hung parliament looms closer, the financial market grows more and more uncertain. Additionally, the prospect of the second hung parliament within three years escalated speculation the governments AAA-credit rating will come under pressure in the coming weeks.

Such uncertainty is never good for markets, and traders may have to wait a month or even longer to start to get a picture on who will be forming a government for the next three years. However, the Australian economy remains strong. We do expect international money flows into our market will slow until the election outcome is known.

“If Brexit taught investors anything, at times of such economic uncertainty it is important to remember the golden rule; do not panic!” 

Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry boss James Pearson believes it’s very likely that whoever does form government will now have to build strong relationships with crossbenchers “to get things done.” Sometimes a minority government can implement a higher level of discipline and ultimately work better.

If Brexit taught investors anything, at times of such economic uncertainty it is important to remember the golden rule; do not panic! Much to the surprise of market participants, equities and bonds have recovered most of the losses they experienced in the wake of the Brexit vote.

Additionally, The Reserve Bank is observing all of this unfold, potentially intervening with an interest rate cut on Tuesday, although economists think this is unlikely. We are also expecting a 0.5% month on month rise in retail sales reflecting a sustained rebound in consumer confidence following the RBA’s decision to cut interest rates in May.

Diversification: the key to success
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In the 2004 documentary Supersize Me, Morgan Spurlock eats food only from McDonalds for a whole month. What was the result? He gained weight (a lot of it), experienced mood swings, and frequent headaches.  

“Like your diet, your share portfolio generally suffers if you just choose one stock and don’t mix it up” 

Now we all love the occasional Macca’s every now and again, but it’s probably safe to say that you should mix it up and maintain a balanced diet. Our body stays healthy that way.

Like your diet, your share portfolio generally suffers if you just choose one stock and don’t mix it up. Choosing different stock types to work together is one of the most important things to keeping your portfolio healthy.  

“By spreading out your investments, you avoid putting your eggs in one basket. If that basket breaks, you can’t have your omelette, that’s a risky situation”

For eating we call it a balanced diet, for investing we call it Diversification. This blog will tell you a little bit about diversification, how it works, and how you can achieve it.

How does diversification work?

Diversification basically means spreading your money across a variety of different investment types. Often these investments perform differently at different stages of the business cycle, or have different correlation with each other.

By spreading out your investments, you avoid putting your eggs in one basket. If that basket breaks, you can’t have your omelette, that’s a risky situation.

For example, take the example of stocks and bonds. During a bad period for the stock market, we tend to see bonds perform better than stocks. If you had a portfolio full of stocks and no bonds at this time, you’ve just missed out on the action. By diversifying you can avoid big shocks to your portfolio.

But it’s not just different asset classes that behave differently. Healthcare stocks will perform differently to Oil stocks, Oil stocks may behave differently to Tech stocks, Foreign Tech stocks may behave differently to Australian ones. There’s many different investment types to diversify.

How can you diversify? 

ETFs are a great start (What is an ETF?).  

“When you invest with Raiz, you diversify” 

With ETFs, you can spread out your investments over hundreds of different stocks. There are ETFs for local stocks, foreign stocks, bonds, and much more. 

When you invest with Raiz, you diversify. Each of the 5 portfolios offered by Raiz are diversified across 5 different ETFs, different countries, and asset classes. 

Our portfolios were designed with diversification in mind, and to give the investor the best expected return for the amount of risk they’re willing to take on. 

So don’t have Macca’s for every meal, and sign-up to invest with Raiz today.

June 2016
Brexit - now what?


As many of you will be aware, last week Britain voted to leave the European Union (EU). This caused much discussion and uncertainty in the markets, however this is settling down and the ASX looks like opening flat this morning.

We will not know the full extent of the economic impact until we understand the deal that the UK will negotiate with the EU. This could take a number of years, and will probably happen before they invoke Article 50 in the Lisbon Treaty which starts the divorce of the UK from the EU. We expect this initial shock to die down over this week, so don’t panic, be calm

The UK will be negotiating for the next few years on the options below:

  • Being part of the EU all but in name, like Norway but this also includes payments to the EU with no seat at the table.

  • They could negotiate a Customs Union model like Turkey.

  • A bilateral agreement between the UK and EU similar to the Swiss model, but this also requires payments to the EU.

  • A free trade agreement like Canada, but this took Canada 15 years to negotiate.

  • A combination of the above while also relying on the WTO agreements.

The above options take time to negotiate, also the UK will also need to start negotiations with other countries outside of the EU (

for example it will not be able to rely on the FTA the EU has with Canada).

So the main takeaway is that UK will be part of the EU for a while longer, and we can expect the status quo from an economic perspective. So don’t panic and remember that this is the time when a disciplined investment strategy shows it’s true value.

Thanks for investing!

ASIC responds to the important issue of providing internet banking credentials to Acorns

As you may be aware, I wrote to the Prime Minister, Malcolm Turnbull, (4 March 2016) about the ePayments Code, and how the banks were playing fast and loose with the truth when telling consumers that their internet banking login details should not be disclosed to third parties, such as Raiz.

This is an important issue as most of our users provide their internet banking details.

It was Raiz’ opinion that the banks were overstepping the mark and now correspondence I have received from ASIC would suggest the regulator, at the very least, has sympathy with our point of view.

Without going into all the details, this was positive news because of the following points ASIC made.

1.      ASIC acknowledges that the messaging from banks about not sharing your login details with third parties is from the early 1980s, when ATMs were introduced, and is out of date in the new world of apps such as Raiz.

2.      ASIC acknowledged the potential value of third party services, such as Raiz, having interaction with a consumer’s bank accounts.

3.      ASIC notes that the Government has accepted the recommendation of the Financial System Inquiry to make the ePayments Code mandatory.  If this mandatory adoption of the Code were implemented, ASIC would ensure that the Code, which protects the consumer when providing internet login details, is “operated appropriately” by banks. Although ASIC did not spell it out, we understand that what ASIC is saying is that the banks are currently not “operating appropriately” under the Code. But until the Code is mandatory they will not act unilaterally while other areas of government, such as the Productivity Commission, are reviewing related issues.

This correspondence from ASIC indicates that the regulator understands the position of Raiz and has expressed a degree of solidarity with that position in regards to the misleading information being provided by some banks. We’re looking forward to seeing how this develops and reaching a point where Australians are free to engage with services such as Raiz without concerns that they are breaching conditions set by their banks. 

George Lucas, Raiz CEO

Save like a vault, spend like a Rock Star
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By Clayton Daniel 

I love it when a simple mathematical illustration can explain things clearly. Think the Pareto Principle of 80/20. Pretty much a well-established fact you will get 80% results from 20% of the effort. Simple, easy to understand, and pretty accurate.

“People are split almost down the middle 50/50 between savers and spenders”

The same goes with standard deviations. We all know the bell curve, but the fact it almost perfectly summarises the population in terms of whether they are a Spender or a Saver is almost uncanny.

Based around research from a range of sources and my own experience as a former tax accountant and financial adviser, I’ve come to the conclusion people are split almost down the middle 50/50 between savers and spenders. Half the population spend everything they earn, and the other half manage to put some money aside. It gets a little more interesting when you break those two halves up even further between moderate and extreme.

Run-of-the-mill Spenders

By that I mean, the first deviation of Spenders are your everyday, run-of-the-mill Spenders. They are the type of person that runs out of money just before pay day, and are relieved when the next pay cheque comes in. They don’t really get themselves into too much trouble, but aren’t really interested in doing anything to ‘get ahead’ other than focusing on the next pay rise or promotion.

Pay-check to Pay-check Spenders

The second deviation Spenders get a little more serious as these people start to get themselves into a little bit of trouble. The first filter they gauge each decision with is ‘what do they want’? The basic premise is if they can’t afford something now, they will with next month’s paycheque. These type of people carry around the $10-$20k debt in credit cards and personal loans and don’t really think it’s a problem. The idea of putting money aside for the future is redundant as they have ‘bills to pay now’.

Train Wreck Spenders

The third deviation on the Spenders are train wrecks. The problem is, by looking from the outside in, you can never tell. These people make up the 2.5% of the population that look amazing on the outside, but peer beneath that surface and things are going to hell in a handbasket. These type of people are in astronomical amounts of credit card and personal loan debt and really only have two ways out, lots of hard decisions or bankruptcy. The problem is generally too big to admit to themselves, and instead they focus on a mythical ‘big pay day’ to solve all their problems.

The Savers on the other side of the divide may sound like they have everything together, but they too experience their own set of problems.

Save to Spend Savers

Let’s first examine the first deviation, the regular Savers. Interestingly, these type of Savers only save to spend. That’s right, the majority of Savers are really just delayed Spenders. These Savers will save for a specific purpose, be it a holiday, a new vehicle, or a home. The purpose of their savings is to facilitate the purchasing of things they want to spend money on without going in to too much debt.

Savers with Intent

The second deviation Savers have a little more intent in their savings. It’s only at this point do we finally meet people who are interested in putting money aside for later in life. They will put aside the classic 20% of their salary to build long term wealth, have no personal debt, but struggle to find the balance between reaching lifestyle goals and not spending too much money. I understand this issue, because if you are disciplined enough to stick to putting money aside, it’s hard to turn that switch off.

Dollar Saved is a Dollar Earned Savers

And finally the third deviation or most extreme Savers are the one’s solely focused on building wealth from a young age and put every single cent aside to achieve that goal. They want to save every single cent, any money spent is money lost. To them ‘a dollar saved is a dollar earned’. They are the kind of people who never do anything social, and on the off chance you get them to join you, don’t get stuck on a round of drinks with them as we both know you’ll end up carrying them.

“The mentality of each side means that once the grooves of consistent behaviour have set in, it is extremely hard to change”

So you have your Spenders on one side and your Savers on the other, and never the both shall meet. The mentality of each side means that once the grooves of consistent behaviour have set in, it is extremely hard to change. Not to say it can’t be done, but it’s hard. And if there is ever any conversation around change, it is always to move someone from being a Spender to a Saver.

“It’s as if the answer to all of life’s issues can be solved as one moves from being a Spender to a Saver….and here in lies the problem”

The problem the Spenders will attest to here, is it’s much more boring on the Savers side. And let’s face it. They have a point. It is. But I think this idea epitomises the major flaw in our corrosively boring ‘personal finance’ education. It’s as if the answer to all of life’s issues can be solved as one moves from being a Spender to a Saver.

“The answer is not to go from spending to saving, it is to exist simultaneously everywhere on the divide. To save like a vault and spend like a Rock Star”

And here in lies the problem. What self-respecting Spender is going to hang up the gloves and become a penny pincher? It’s not going to happen. In fact it rarely does happen. So do we just leave it there? An endless array of personal finance specialists, one after the other repeating this advice to no avail? Is this the only answer? Or once again, have we all just taken this advice from people with no real world experience?

“ The answer is not to feel bad about spending your own money, but instead to have an amount set aside for guilt free spending”

After managing the cash flow of people on all ends of this divide, I can tell you the answer is not to go from spending to saving, it is to exist simultaneously everywhere on the divide. To save like a vault and spend like a Rock Star. The answer is not to feel bad about spending your own money, but instead to have an amount set aside for guilt free spending. The goal is not to have ‘long term savings’ as the word ‘savings’ is super boring and un-engaging, but instead to have ‘investments’. And the goal is not to avoid travelling, but to have a ‘lifestyle bucket’ to support your need and want to live the life you’ve worked hard for.

“Automation. Automation is key”

But here is the hard part. How do you hold two opposing thought patterns - both Spender and Saver – at the same time? If you were lucky enough to read my last article for Raiz you will know the answer. Automation. Automation is key. Remove your fallible self and the inefficient use of your own time and decision capacity and outsource to automation.

Stop wasting your time managing your own money and let technology do this for you.

Clayton Daniel, Financial commentator and author of upcoming book Fund Your Ideal Lifestyle

May 2016
The Sneaky Money Trick That Fools Us All
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By Superfitdad

You might not be into investments for any number of reasons. Maybe you don’t understand the vagaries of the markets and prefer to stay away from things you don’t understand. That’s perfectly understandable. Maybe you’re more into property, since “there’s no better investment than bricks and mortar.” Again, perfectly understandable.

But, I’m telling you right here and right now, if you’re in Australia (or most anywhere in the world), there’s an element of the investment markets that you simply CANNOT AFFORD TO IGNORE because you have a (in)vested interest in it.

This is something so simple and so basic that it’s almost invariably overlooked. And yet it takes just 5 minute to review it and see if you’re making a simple mistake that could end up costing you hundreds of thousands of dollars.

That’s right: fixing this one thing up – the one thing that I’m betting you haven’t looked at recently (because it’s tucked away in fine print on the statement that you barely look at, let alone understand (I’m just starting to get my head around it) – could literally save you hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Or put those dollars in your pocket.

Do I have your attention?

Good.

Now, what is it?

Your. Superannuation. Fees.

Really?

Yup, those measly 2% or 3% fees tucked away in a corner of your annual super statement, which, as we’ve established, you probably don’t read because those things are about as user-friendly it’s as if they were written in Arabic. Or Latin.

These fees can eat away at your retirement fund like a cancer, compounding and growing as your pot grows. And you’re (probably) letting it happen around you. So if you do one thing and one thing only in regard to anything I’ve ever written, it’s this:

See how much you are paying in fees and assess whether the fund manager deserves your money based on their performance.

Why This Matters?

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The illustration above makes it clear just how the fees can mount up if left unattended.

Assuming you (and your employer) have saved wisely for 40 years, your fund could end up being “worth” circa $1m. Except you’ve been paying an itty-bitty 2% annual management fee to your superannuation fund manager – regardless of their performance – so all you’re left with is $630,000.

The scoundrels have taken $370,000 in fees. Compare this $630K with the guy who has been paying 0.5% as an annual management fee. He’s left with a pot of $890,000. That’s 41% more at retirement (or $261,000). That’s a lot of cruises. A lot of pina coladas.

Worth checking out what you’re paying, huh?

You might be thinking that if your fund is performing well, returning maybe 8% per annum or more, then it’s worth paying a little extra in fees. You’re damn right, it might be. But, often it’s not.

High fees don’t always come with high returns. And if you end up accepting high fees for poor or average returns, well, you’re getting mugged off paying for schmick offices and coffee waiters.

Remember this: you can’t control how the market performs. But you can control the fees you pay and your approach to risk.

Your Task Now (yep, right now, don’t put it off)

Promise me this one thing. You’ll go and check the annual management fees you’re paying and take whatever action is necessary.

 Superfitdad

Minus the Minutia: the Power of Automation
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by Clayton Daniel, Financial Commentator

Around twelve months ago I surveyed some 25 – 40 year olds as to what they wanted out of life and what they wanted to avoid. I expected the results to reflect everything I had ever read about Gen X and Y wanting to be rich, retire early on a passive income, kick up the heels or go travelling around the world. The results however did not reflect that expectation.

Instead of early retirement, people wanted job satisfaction. Instead of wanting more money, people wanted more time. Instead of perpetual travel, people wanted something to show for their hard work.

“[Baby boomers] were taught safety and security was purchased with the ownership of assets…..we have now seen the concept of ownership go from the domain of security, to the realm of responsibility”

I was amazed at the findings. Had I been lied to, or had no one simply done what I had done – gone to the demographic and asked? What I realised is that over the last twenty years, a lot has changed. In fact, that is an understatement, everything has changed.

The baby boomers grew up with parents from a war torn era. They were taught safety and security was purchased with the ownership of assets. And that’s what the baby boomers did. They bought. From homes to cars to fancy appliances. Ownership guaranteed freedom.

“Ownership takes time, it takes hard work, and it removes instant gratification”

Gen Y on the other hand have grown up in an economy of uninterrupted growth for the last 25 years. Add in the growth of technology, and the boom of the sharing economy, and we have seen the concept of ownership go from the domain of security, to the realm of responsibility. Why own a car when Uber can pick me up from anywhere and take me to anywhere I want to go. I don’t have to find parking, I don’t have to own a depreciating asset, I don’t even need to worry about sobriety. More convenience for a lower cost, where do I sign?

“Our brain is not built to handle so many things competing for our attention”

This idea of access over ownership has been a massive shift in the way we interact with the world. Ownership takes time, it takes hard work, and it removes instant gratification.

And there is so much to be instantly gratified by these days. Whether you Tinder your way through the weekend, Netflix binge your new favourite series, or stream a new album on Spotify, whatever you want these days you can have it. Immediately.

The problem is, these new services comes with a time cost. And despite the amazing complexity of our neo cortex to create fully functioning and (mostly) rational humans, we still haven’t outpaced our 200,000 year history. Put simply, our brain is not built to handle so many things competing for our attention.

Even a couple of hundred years ago it was simply:

a) Is there food?

b) Is there water?

c) Is there shelter?

If all three are checked, you were good.

These days our tick boxes are a lot more complex. Does your boss like you, did you choose the right career path, and is there kale in your green smoothie?

“You adapt, and create shortcuts to get big results from little changes. And my pro tip is automation”

Our brains are so exhausted by these open loop questions, when you add on the fact we are working longer than ever, and filling every other second we aren’t indulging our senses with a social media hit, it’s no wonder some of us are feeling under the pump.

But this is modern day life, you can’t avoid it. And saying ‘let’s go back to the old days when it was better’ is redundant advice. Instead you adapt, and create shortcuts to get big results from little changes. And my pro tip is automation.

“Once we remove ourselves from needing to make every single financial decision, we can free our minds up to focus on what we should be giving attention to”

Research tells us all these distractions and interruptions require us to make decisions every day. And each of these decisions saps you of your ability to make good decisions. It’s called decision fatigue and explains why over the course of a day, your decisions get worse. Judges make worse decisions in the afternoon compared to the morning, people buy useless extras at car dealerships, and we are susceptible to ‘impulse purchases’ at the checkout. Therefore, the lower amount of decisions you make, the higher your ability to make good decisions.

“One of the best things you can do with your money is to set it all up on automation”

So when the results of the survey I conducted came back, I realised what people needed was a way to deal with modern life. With so many things competing for your attention, how is it possible to make the best decisions? What I found was the more decisions were set to automation in the background, the better the results were for every other part of life.

Once we remove ourselves from needing to make every single financial decision, we can free our minds up to focus on what we should be giving our attention to: performing better at our jobs, making time with family, and finding new experiences.

“[Raiz] hits the spot on two fronts, access and automation”

After implementing this theory for a few years and seeing the results, I am convinced; one of the best things you can do with your money is to set it all up on automation. I don’t know when my rent is paid, how much I have for my next holiday to New York in August, or whether my long term asset base is getting larger, all I know is it is. Why? I don’t control it. It’s all on automation.

In no small way, this is why Raiz has been as successful as it has been. It hits the spot on two fronts, access and automation. It’s easy for me to see my investments as I can access them right on my phone, and secondly I don’t have to do anything, the money is deposited into my account with every purchase.

Avoid decision fatigue and outsource to automation. Go spend your time on things that matter.

Clayton Daniel, Financial Commentator

You can start using Raiz at any time by clicking this link!

Mindful in May
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The buzzword “mindfulness” seems to be everywhere at the moment. Whether you are using a mindfulness app or practicing mindfulness through meditation and yoga – the trend of mindfulness is hard to miss.  Mindfulness is usually discussed in terms of achieving spiritual and emotional awareness, often ignoring the more practical applications it can provide.  Financial mindfulness will lower your anxiety, focus your approach and save you money.

The principle behind being mindful in May is spending 10 minutes a day practicing meditation, and at Raiz we believe this should be applied to being mindful with your money. With the End of Financial Year just around the corner, May is the perfect time to concentrate on being mindful about spending and saving.  This May designate some time to not just develop a financial plan, but reflect on your saving goals, research into investment options, and be mindful about what you are spending your money on.

You can become a master, rather than a slave to your money with these easy tips:

1.       Track your expenses manually:

Instead of painfully examining your bank statements at the end of the month, try tracking your purchases manually as you make them. A good way to do this is to write down what you spend whilst you are making the transactions.  Awareness starts in realizing how much and what you’re spending money on. By getting in the habit of tracking your expenses, you’ll become more aware of your purchases and what they mean for your overall financial health.

2.       Set a waiting period:

It is so easy in the digital age to buy something without considering if you really need it. With PayPal and Paywave shopping can be such a mindless activity, and it’s not till you receive your bank statement that the guilt sinks in.  To stop yourself from spending in a vacuum, set a waiting period of at least 24 hours to decide if your purchase is really a necessity. The age old advice of ‘sleep on it’ can really make a difference when it comes to impulse purchases.

3.       Realise what the trade-offs are:

It is easy to spend money if you are not aware of what you are sacrificing in the long run.  For example, spending $100 eating out a week, or buying an unnecessary item of clothing may not seem like a big deal, but in the long run $100 can go towards paying off a stressful debt, or starting a saving fund for a well-deserved relaxing holiday.  It may seem difficult to practice self-control, but challenge yourself for the month of May. Bring your own lunch to work, or meet a friend for a walk in the park on the weekend rather than for a drink.  

Make May your month to reflect on and develop your mental and financial health!

You can start using Raiz at any time by clicking this link!

April 2016
Raiz: A new way to invest



Raiz is a micro-investment app looking to bring a new, natural approach to saving and investing. The concept behind Raiz is simple; by starting small, contributing often and committing long-term, anyone can achieve “financial well-being” and reach their saving goals. What is revolutionary about Raiz is that it is a micro- investing platform that allows you to get fully invested in a basket of ETFs quoted on the ASX for as little as $5. This provides first time investors with the tools to make small contributions easily, regularly and cost efficiently.  

With low maintenance fees of $1.25 a month, using Raiz for a year can cost less than some traditional brokers charge for a trade. Furthermore, with Raiz there are no exit fees, switching fees, brokerage fees and withdrawing money from your account takes a couple of swipes.  For as little as $5, anyone can now own a diversified portfolio of stocks. We also believe in the financial education of all Raiz customers; a lack of knowledge shouldn’t be a barrier to investing; this is why we make the app easy to use, provide real-time information on your investments, and give everyone a chance to learn about markets through the app and through Raiz content. 

These are the three easy ways to get invested with Raiz:

Round-ups

This key innovative feature links spending to savings.  People invest small change every day without even thinking about it.  Raiz makes it possible to link your credit and debit cards and then round up the virtual change from every transaction.  A virtual “piggy bank”.

Automatic Investments

Raiz also makes it easy to set up recurring deposits on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis.  Setting up automatic investment can be done in seconds through the app, and is great for maintaining a regular savings plan. 

Lump Sums

Our users can also invest any amount, at any time, with a simple lump sum investment. 

With these unique ways to fund your account, Raiz is creating an entirely new approach to saving and investing your money.

 Invest with Raiz today

March 2016
5 Things to Know About Investing
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Thinking about starting your portfolio? Or maybe you’re already a small time investor looking for a little more education. Either way, there’s no shame in not knowing all the ins and outs of markets. And sometimes, just getting familiar with the most basic concepts is all you need to make you feel more comfortable investing.

With that in mind we’ve got 5 investing basics to start you off:

1.       OWNING A COMPANY (OR AT LEAST A LITTLE BIT OF ONE)

When you purchase a share on the stock market you may ask, what am I actually buying? You know your money has gone somewhere, but other than some documentation you don’t get much back. So it’s a good question to ask.

The answer: You own a percentage of the company (or companies) of the stock that you just bought.

If a company has 100 shares and you buy 50, you own 50% of that company.

If you buy 10, you own 10%.

If you buy 1, you own 1%.

You’ll usually own much, much smaller percentages than that, but no matter how much you own, if you have a share you have a legal stake in that company.

2.       THE MARKETS CAN GO UP AND DOWN

One of the greatest myths of the stock market is that they usually go in one direction, up. We can very much bust that myth and tell you they also go down.

Over days, weeks, months, and years the markets can move in both directions. This is important to bear in mind to avoid nasty surprises.

Read more: Dollar-cost averaging

3.       DIVIDENDS

You’ve probably heard of dividends, and you’re definitely forgiven for not knowing what they are.

Dividends are a portion of a company’s earnings, paid to their shareholders. Usually a way for shareholders to enjoy company profits.

If you own 10 shares of a company, and they pay a dividend of $1 per share, you get $10 ($1 x 10)

Read more: What is a dividend?

4.       INVESTING IS FOR EVERYONE

You’d be forgiven for thinking that you need a fancy suit and a degree in finance to invest in the stock market. However, you don’t. Anyone can invest in publicly listed companies, because they are as the name suggests, public! Just like kicking a ball around with your mates on a public oval.

We suggest you do your research and think about your personal situation before making any investment decision. With apps like Raiz around anyone can invest, any time they want, with as little as $5.

Read More: Unique Ways to Invest with Raiz

5.       ROME WASN’T BUILT IN A DAY

This isn’t the Wolf of Wall Street, and sadly we’re not Leonardo DiCaprio. When most people invest they don’t do it to get rich quick. Building a portfolio and letting it grow takes time, but like much of life, good things come to those who wait…

… but don’t wait until tomorrow to start investing. Now you know the basics you can start building your portfolio today!

Why moving money with Raiz can take time

We get a lot of questions about why it takes so long for a balance to appear in Raiz accounts after hitting deposit, so to explain this we thought we’d break this process down step-by-step, and how long these steps take.

When you invest or withdraw with Raiz, we try to make the process as smooth as possible, from the moment you hit the button, to the money appearing in your Raiz account or back into your bank account.

DEPOSITS:

When you hit deposit, it should take just 1, but can take up to 2 business days for Raiz to withdraw money from your chosen funding source.  This is because we send withdrawal requests once a day to our bank, every business day. If you deposit in your Raiz Investment Account before our daily cut-off time (approx. 3.30pm Sydney Time), your bank account will be debited that same night (and the following night if you deposit is received after this cut-off time).

This can seem longer over a weekend or public holiday.  

The following business day, once the withdrawal requests are processed, we invest that money, buying the shares for your investment (this is also done only once a day as outlined in the Product Disclosure Statement at around midday Sydney Time). As soon as that money has been invested, the value of your investment should be reflected in your Raiz Investment Account balance.When you hit deposit, it should take just 1, but can take up to 2 business days for Raiz to withdraw money from your chosen funding source.  This is because we send withdrawal requests once a day to our bank, every business day. If you deposit in your Raiz Investment Account before our daily cut-off time (approx. 3.30pm Sydney Time), your bank account will be debited that same night (and the following night if you deposit is received after this cut-off time).

This can seem longer over a weekend or public holiday.  

The following business day, once the withdrawal requests are processed, we invest that money, buying the shares for your investment (this is also done only once a day as outlined in the Product Disclosure Statement at around midday Sydney Time). As soon as that money has been invested, the value of your investment should be reflected in your Raiz Investment Account balance.

WITHDRAWALS:

When you withdraw from your Raiz Investment Account, we will execute that withdrawal within 1 business day. We sell the relevant shares for that investment once a day again.  If your withdrawal request is received after 9.30am Sydney time, your ETFs will not be sold until the next business day.

Due to the rules of buying and selling shares on the ASX, it takes 2 business days for us to receive payment for your withdrawal. Once received, Raiz transfers the withdrawal amount straight to your chosen funding source, which can take 1-3 business days depending on your bank.

This is why you can expect withdrawals to come back to your account in 5-7 business days.

We want this process to be as painless as possible for you, if you have any further questions or concerns we encourage you to contact us at support@Raizinvest.com.au or call us on 1300 754 748.

4 Reasons you should build a budget today
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It’s probably not going to be the most interesting thing you do this year, but building a budget could be one of the most important… and it doesn’t really take that much effort. Here’s 4 quick reasons you should take an hour out of your busy schedule to build a budget:

1)      Gets You Thinking

It’s too easy to live your life on autopilot these days. When you can use your card just about anywhere it’s easy to forget just how much you are spending, and what you are spending it on. If anything, writing out a budget gets you thinking about what you’re currently spending your hard earned money on, and what you actually want to be spending it on.

2)      No Nasty Surprises

Not only will an effective budget tell you what you’re spending money on, but also when you are spending it. This can’t help avoid nasty surprises in your bank account when you have to pay your phone, electricity, rent, gym membership or any other kind of bill as many of us do.

3)      Forward Planning

Having a budget allows you to look not only to tomorrow, but to the coming weeks, months, and years. It allows you to plan a path to financial fitness, and identify what you need to do to get there.

4)      Old Habits Die Hard

Even if it’s not the most pressing issue, developing a disciplined saving plan is always important. If you get into the groove of keeping a track of your spending habits, it’ll be all the more easy when you have a bigger, more complicated budget to deal with.

So if you have a bit of spare time this week, try building a budget, and be sure to let us know on Facebook and Twitter of any tips you have!

You can start using Raiz at any time by clicking this link!

Our Letter to The Hon. Malcolm Turnbull (from Raiz, previously Acorns)

4 March 2016

The Hon. Malcolm Turnbull,   MP

Prime Minister

Parliament House

Canberra ACT 2600

 

Dear Prime Minister,

Establishment of the FinTech Advisory Group

I write to congratulate the Australian Government on its decision to establish a FinTech Advisory Group, and I continue to welcome the increased focus on encouraging innovation in Australia, particularly in the FinTech sector.  As an active member of this community, and having recently launched our Acorns product in Australia, I have experienced first-hand the dramatic surge in activity in this industry, and I look forward to its continued growth.

That said, I strongly believe there is major issue that, if left unresolved, will prevent FinTech innovation and competition achieving its full potential in Australia.  

It is my contention there is lack of understanding and confusion in the public mind that they are no longer protected by Australian regulations, and that the liability protections under the terms and conditions on which they conduct their internet banking do not apply when they deal with FinTech start-ups such as ourselves.  This is not the case.

I am concerned and disappointed to see banks and other financial institutions seek to discourage users from engaging with FinTech by exacerbating the confusion and fear in this area.  

It should not fall upon the small start-ups to educate investors about their rights and obligations vis-à-vis their banks, and it should not fall upon small start-ups to monitor the information that is being disseminated to consumers by bank employees.

To explain this more specifically, Acorns is a micro investing / micro savings smartphone application. When a user signs up to the app, they provide Acorns (and its service provider Yodlee) with their bank account log-on details and password. There has been significant media commentary (both social and mainstream), including comments made by persons who purport to be bank employees, that by doing this, the user becomes liable for any unauthorised transactions. As you would expect, these type of comments are creating great consternation and discouraging users from engaging with FinTech companies, such as Acorns.

However, this commentary, and the stance taken by the purported bank employees, is wrong. It is clear under the ePayments Code (Code) (which all major Australian banks have subscribed to) that the user will not be liable for any unauthorised transactions because:

(a)             the user expressly appoints Acorns and Yodlee to collect information on the user’s behalf only (i.e. Acorns and Yodlee have “read only” access to the user’s bank account. They cannot effect transactions); and

(b)             Acorns and Yodlee protect the data using encryption and bank standard security measures to keep it safe.

Consequently, the user does not breach the requirements of the Code, nor the terms and conditions of their bank contract and does not become liable for any and all unauthorised transactions.

I would urge the FinTech Advisory Group and ASIC to consider this issue, given their mandate to encourage FinTech innovation, while reducing barriers and ensuring that these barriers are not (mis)used by incumbent players to discourage competition. Unless this issue is resolved, I believe it will stunt the development of FinTech, an integral part of the Innovation strategy recently articulated by you.

Please be aware that we will release a copy of this letter to our users (of which there are over 50,000) and to the media at large.

Should you wish to discuss this matter further or if you have any questions or comments, please contact me on 1300 954 678.

Yours faithfully

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 George  Lucas

Managing Director

Acorns Grow Australia  Limited

Back to Uni - Time to get smart about investing
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As summer officially comes to an end, it is time to go back to University – and we know that whether you are a first year student or a returning graduate the temptation to spend is everywhere. 

The harsh reality of returning to Uni is that it is time to recover from a summer spent emptying your bank account travelling, shopping and celebrating the festive season. Even if you spent the summer working, the start of the academic year is the perfect time to start thinking about the best way to make your hard earned cash last longer. 

Instead of falling into the trap of spending all your savings on overpriced but underwhelming lunches on campus, or unnecessary Tuesday afternoon drinks at the union bar, get smart about saving and investing – whilst you spend.

 It may seem trivial today, but these little savings add up and will pleasantly surprise you, helping fund your next summer activities. Not only is saving a bit of extra cash useful, but being disciplined with your money is an important life lesson for everyone…

 However, if you cannot function without three double-shot soy flat whites a day, at-least start saving whilst you spend. That’s where Raiz comes in!

 Many university students think that they are not ready to start investing. Whether you think that your income isn’t big enough, you are too young, or that you are lacking the financial knowledge, it’s time to stop making excuses because it’s easier than you think. You can start investing from as little as $5.00.

By rounding-up your purchases, Raiz links your everyday spending to saving and investing. 

The goal of the round-up is to allow you to invest small amounts, without even thinking about it! By linking your spending accounts (EFTPOS, debit and credit cards etc.), the virtual change from every transaction is invested into your Raiz investment account. This combined with lump sum investments and automatic deposits gives you an easy way to effectively develop your first portfolio.  You can get your money out at any time with a couple of swipes of the app. 

The registration process only takes a couple of minutes and no previous knowledge of markets is needed to set up your account.

Whether you are already planning your mid-year escape, thinking about paying off your University debts or just feel like your laptop is in need of an upgrade – you are ready to start investing.  With so much on your mind at the beginning of a university semester – let Raiz take care of your savings.

#acornsgrow #investthechange
February 2016
Using Your Internet Banking Details With Raiz (previously Acorns)
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We’ve received a lot of questions regarding the legality of submitting one’s personal bank login details to Raiz in order to use our Round-Ups feature, so we thought we would try to explain the ePayments Code, which the Australian Securities & Investment Commission (ASIC) administers on behalf of its subscribers, the banks and institutions. To see if your financial institution is a subscriber, you can view a list on ASIC’s website.

We recommend you keep reading, but if you can’t be bothered with the legal mumbo jumbo, here’s the take home message:

Having researched ASIC’s ePayments code, we can tell you that using your internet banking login details with Raiz should not void any terms and conditions with your bank.

 

To quote ASIC’s site directly:

Almost all banks, credit unions and building societies in Australia are subscribers to the ePayments Code. Other providers of consumer electronic payment facilities such as PayPal have also subscribed to the code.

Among other things, the ePayments Code:

·         requires subscribers to give consumers clear and unambiguous terms and conditions,

·         stipulates how terms and conditions changes (such as fee increases), receipts and statement need to be made

·         sets out the rules for determining who pays for unauthorised transactions, and;

·         establishes a regime for recovering mistaken internet payments.

Most of the questions we have received come from customers who believe that entering one’s login details into the Raiz app will make them liable for any losses in their account. This is false.

Entering banking login details into the Raiz app to create round-up opportunities will not see you become liable for unauthorised transactions because:

(a)        the user expressly appoints Raiz and Yodlee to collect information on the user’s behalf only (i.e. Raiz and Yodlee have “read only” access to the user’s bank account. They cannot effect transactions); and

(b)        Raiz and Yodlee protect the data using encryption and bank standard security measures to keep it safe.

Raiz uses industry-standard security like 256-bit SSL encryption of sensitive information, redundant backups, and disaster recovery planning. Even in the incredibly unlikely event that all these measures fail, customers of Raiz are insured against fraud & cyber-crime. This insurance does not invalidate the liability of your financial institution, so you are protected against liability and loss.

In conclusion, Raiz and its use of a transaction aggregator to retrieve round-ups on your behalf, we believe, is in compliance with ePayments Code as outlined by ASIC. You will not be forfeiting any protection by using your online login with Raiz. Stay safe out there, and continue to be smart about with whom you share your sensitive information.

We appreciate your trust and loyalty. We promise never to abuse it.

Source: ePayments Code – http://asic.gov.au/for-consumers/codes-of-practice/epayments-code/

Relevant excerpts below:

unauthorised transaction means a transaction that is not authorised by a user

9 Scope Transactions not authorised by a user

9.1 This Chapter applies to unauthorised transactions. It does not apply to any transaction that is performed by a user or by anyone who performs a transaction with the knowledge and consent of a user.

10 When holder is not liable for loss

10.1 A holder is not liable for loss arising from an unauthorised transaction if the cause of the loss is any of the following:

(a) fraud or negligence by a subscriber‘s employee or agent, a third party involved in networking arrangements, or a merchant or their employee or agent,

(b) a device, identifier or pass code which is forged, faulty, expired or cancelled,

© a transaction requiring the use of a device and/or pass code that occurred before the user received the device and/or pass code (including a reissued device and/or pass code),

(d) a transaction being incorrectly debited more than once to the same facility, and

(e) an unauthorised transaction performed after the subscriber has been informed that a device has been misused, lost or stolen, or the security of a pass code has been breached.

10.2 A holder is not liable for loss arising from an unauthorised transaction that can be made using an identifier without a pass code or device. Where a transaction can be made using a device, or a device and an identifier, but does not require a pass code, the holder is liable only if the user unreasonably delays reporting the loss or theft of the device.

10.3 A holder is not liable for loss arising from an unauthorised transaction where it is clear that a user has not contributed to the loss.

12 Pass code security requirements

Pass code security

12.1 Clause 12 applies where one or more pass codes are needed to perform a transaction.

12.2 A user must not:

(a) voluntarily disclose one or more pass codes to anyone, including a family member or friend,

(b) where a device is also needed to perform a transaction, write or record pass code(s) on a device, or keep a record of the pass code(s) on anything:

(i) carried with a device, or

(ii) liable to loss or theft simultaneously with a device, unless the user makes a reasonable attempt to protect the security of the pass code, or

© where a device is not needed to perform a transaction, keep a written record of all pass codes required to perform transactions on one or more articles liable to be lost or stolen simultaneously, without making a reasonable attempt to protect the security of the pass code(s).

12.3 For the purpose of clauses 12.2(b)–12.2©, a reasonable attempt to protect the security of a pass code record includes making any reasonable attempt to disguise the pass code within the record, or prevent unauthorised access to the pass code record, including by:

(a) hiding or disguising the pass code record among other records,

(b) hiding or disguising the pass code record in a place where a pass code record would not be expected to be found,

© keeping a record of the pass code record in a securely locked container, or

(d) preventing unauthorised access to an electronically stored record of the pass code record. This list is not exhaustive.

12.4 A user must not act with extreme carelessness in failing to protect the security of all pass codes where extreme carelessness means a degree of carelessness that greatly exceeds what would normally be considered careless behaviour.

Note 1: An example of extreme carelessness is storing a user name and pass code for internet banking in a diary, BlackBerry or computer that is not password protected under the heading ‘Internet banking codes’.

12.9 Where a subscriber expressly or implicitly promotes, endorses or authorises the use of a service for accessing a facility (for example, by hosting an access service on the subscriber’s electronic address), a user who discloses, records or stores a pass code that is required or recommended for the purpose of using the service does not breach the pass code security requirements in clause 12.

Note 1: For example, if a subscriber permits users to give their pass code(s) to an account aggregator service offered by the subscriber or an associated company, a user who discloses their pass code(s) to the service does not breach the pass code security requirements in clause 12.

13 Pass code security guidelines

13.1 A subscriber may give users guidelines on ensuring the security of devices and pass codes in their terms and conditions or other communications.

13.2 Guidelines under this clause must:

(a) be consistent with clause 12,

(b) clearly distinguish the circumstances when holders are liable for unauthorised transactions under this Code, and

© include a statement that liability for losses resulting from unauthorised transactions will be determined by this Code, rather than the guidelines.

15 Network arrangements

15.1 In clause 15:

merchant acquirer means a subscriber that provides a service to merchants that enables them to accept/receive electronic payments

party to a shared electronic payments network includes retailers, merchants, communications services providers and other organisations offering facilities, merchant acquirers and subscribers

15.2 A subscriber must not avoid any obligation owed to users under this Code on the basis that:

(a) it is a party to a shared electronic payments network, and

(b) another party to the network caused the failure to meet the obligation.

15.3 A subscriber must not require a user who is their customer to:

(a) raise a complaint or dispute about the processing of a transaction with any other party to a shared electronic payments network, or

(b) have a complaint or dispute investigated by any other party to a shared electronic payments network.

Excuses Excuses Excuses
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He that is good for making excuses is seldom good for anything else” – Benjamin Franklin

What does everyone who finds it hard to save money have in common? We all have an excuse for why we can’t do it. Let’s talk through a few of the most commonly made excuses.

1.       You can’t afford it

You want to save, maybe you even “try” to save sometimes, but your money just doesn’t stretch far enough. It’s not unusual to feel that you’re not making enough money to start saving, and even those who have generous wages report this as an excuse not to save.

So why do you feel like you don’t have enough money? The simple answer is that you may just be spending more than you actually need toTake a good hard look at your “necessary” spending, and think about which items you may be able to cut down on, and try not to spend more just because you’re earning more.

2.       You will start saving “tomorrow”

You want to save, but it can wait until tomorrow, or next month, or next year, what difference does it make? Well actually it could make a lot of difference. Too many of us tell ourselves that it’s fine for us to just leave it until later to start saving.

Take a moment to think of your future self, who wants to buy a house, go on holiday, or maybe even retire early. Now ask yourself if there’s any good reason why you shouldn’t start saving now; with compound returns it can make a big difference if you start saving early. So don’t put off until tomorrow what you can do today.

3.       It’s too complicated

With all the different saving and investing options, it’s not surprising that many of us are confused about where to start. Super funds, savings accounts, share market? You’ve got a few options, but they don’t make it that easy for you. Choosing the right super fund, or constructing the right portfolio of shares can be a daunting task at times, and may require a significant level of knowledge and expertise.

ETFs provide you with a great option to begin investing in the share market; ETFs can track a certain index such as the ASX 200, and allow you to gain exposure to a variety of different shares for a very small fee.

Using Raiz to help stop the excuses

Whether you think you can’t afford it, you’re putting it off until tomorrow, or it all seems too complicated, we think that by using Raiz you can help eliminate those excuses from your life.

By rounding-up your purchases, Raiz helps you link spending to saving, so instead of thinking about what you can and can’t afford, you can just go about your business while Raiz does your saving in the background.

It’s never too complicated with Raiz; we’ve constructed 5 different portfolios for you to choose from, from 7 different ETFs. With Raiz you get the sophistication of a fund manager, with a fraction of the fees.

You don’t need to keep putting it off until tomorrow. We have made our sign-up process as easy as possible, so you can start today and thank yourself later.

Say hello to Raiz, and goodbye to excuses.

January 2016
New Years Resolutions

Hello and a Happy New Year from the Raiz blog! 2015 was pretty good, but with Raiz’ full launch next month it looks like 2016 will be even better. Around this time of year people start to make resolutions, things they want to start doing, or stop doing, to improve their life. We may be slightly biased, but we reckon 2016 should be the year you make saving and investing your resolution. Starting, and sticking to, a good savings plan could be one of the most important things you do this year, and could prove to be a big step on the way to reaching your financial goals.With that in mind we thought we’d talk about how to save, sticking to your resolution, and how Raiz could help.The Big BudgetEvery saving plan starts with a budget. It’s important to get it all on paper (or excel). Writing it all out makes you realise how much you have, what your necessary expenses are, and where you could be making cuts. Take a bit of time on your budget, and be realistic, there’s no point in making a strict budget you can’t keep to.Tips from the team at RaizHere are some of our team’s best tips for saving money:George – Cut the Coffee: If you’re like many Australians, you’re probably spending far too much on coffee. Instead of buying two $4 coffees a day, buy a jar of instant and save $30 a week.Ali – Cash is king: It’s pretty easy to lose track of how much you’re spending when you just tap your card everywhere. Using cash gives me a regular reminder of how much I’ve spent each day.Brendan – Make a date with your money: Holding yourself accountable is important. Set aside a time every week to look at how much you spent, and whether you’re hitting your saving targets.Tony – Set and forget: If you can, try automatically setting aside a portion of your pay check into a savings account every month – you can usually set up these automatic transfers through your online banking.Ishaan - $5 Jar: I’ve found that you don’t get given $5 notes as much as you’d think. Try putting away each $5 you get into a jar, then focus on keeping out of the jar.Sticking to your planSticking to your savings plan can be the most difficult part. Whether it’s new clothes, a big night on the town, or any of the other million things to spend your money on, it’s quite easy to break your budget. Here’s a few things that may help you stick to the plan.Save before you spend: Money can be like a gas that fills all the available space, you end up spending whatever you have. How to you combat this: Put your money away before you have the chance to spend it.Goals based saving: Setting targets for yourself can be a great way for you to stick to a plan. Make your milestones realistic so you don’t get disheartened. When you see that you’re making progress towards a certain goal (enough for a holiday, new car, etc.), you’ll be encouraged to keep at it.Make it habitual: Once you get into the habit, saving can seem quite addictive. There’s no easy way to make something a habit, but there are tools out there. Some of the Raiz team use apps such as 7 Weeks, and Habitica to help them start a habit. How Raiz fits inRaiz is here to help you with your resolution. With Recurring Investments you can save before you spend, regularly saving money daily, weekly, or monthly. Unique ways to invest with Raiz.With Round-ups you can save whilst you spend, so even if you’re making more purchases, you’re saving and investing at the same time. A natural way to invest.With Raiz you can track how much you have invested, and how much it’s grown, so you can keep your financial targets in view. We hope we have a great 2016 with you as an Raiz customer.

Beta Testing

If you’re reading this - it probably means that you are helping us with Beta testing of the Raiz App. Thanks for your assistance and we appreciate your support!

The purpose of Beta testing is to get as much live user feedback as possible and understand what issues are arising whilst using the app. This blog has been created to let you know what issues we’re currently working on. We’ve also created it for you to contribute to, so if you find an issue with Raiz that isn’t on this blog, email us at support@Raizinvest.com.au and we’ll get working on it as soon as possible.

Please notify us of any:

·         Bugs/errors

·         Unclear elements of the app

·         Suggestions on how to improve the User Experience

·         Suggestions for new features and functionality

·         Comments about our Customer Support

General Issues

1. Roundups

Delay in Roundups appearing in Raiz account: Currently Roundups are not appearing in your Raiz account in real time and are only updating once per day

2. Automatic Roundups not working on some accounts

Roundups still need to be added with the + symbol in order to be invested. This is only occurring on some people’s accounts

3. Recurring Deposits

Any Weekly or Monthly Recurring Deposit will only occur at the time of initiation of the transaction and will not occur thereafter.

4.  Performance Screen

-  Performance screen is calculating pending investments in Market gain/loss under the 1 day/1D section

5.  Linking Bank Accounts

The following banks are currently having difficulty linking as Roundup Accounts (please note: all accounts that require an additional SMS or email code to sign in will not work):

1.      Suncorp

2.      St George

3.      Coles MasterCard

4.      HSBC Credit Card

5.      28 Degrees MasterCard

6.      Big Sky Credit Card

7.      Greater Building Society

8.      GE Creditline

9.      CUA Mastercard - links but takes approx 15 minutes

Web app issues

1. SSL Security Certificate

Due to an upgrade of the Web app’s Security certificate - Chrome will report an error and attempt block access if you have previously used the Web app on that device.

This issue will be resolved by Wednesday, however in order to access the web app - within Chrome please go to Settings > History > Clear Browsing Data > then select ‘Hosted app data’ and ‘Cached images and files’ and clear those items.   

iOS Specific Issues

1.  iOS app does not recognise age under Performance screen

On the Performance Screen - the projection graph has inaccurate age values.

2.  Performance screen includes any deposit/withdrawal in performance figure

The % on Performance is inaccurate as it includes deposits and withdrawal for the day

Android Beta has been made available as of Wednesday 13/1/16 - please email in if you would like to be sent a link

Hope you’re enjoying Raiz!

December 2015
2015 Year In Review

It’s usually around this time of year that we start to look at the calendar, and ask ourselves where the year went. So we thought there would be no better time than now to reflect, and look at the big events that shaped the financial markets in 2015.
Stocks slipping up on Oil
What?
The price of oil has been in freefall. It’s hard to believe that in 2014 the price of oil was US$115 a barrel. Since then, the price has fallen nearly 70%, and is now at just over US$36.
Why?
In short, supply and demand: Too much oil being produced, and not enough people buying it.
Effect?
Sharp falls in some of the biggest Australian companies’ share prices. Santos is at just 25% of the price it was in late 2014.
A near Greek Tragedy
What?
It seems like an awfully long time ago – but over May, June, July of this year, Greece was on the verge of leaving the European Union.
Why?
Debt. The Greek economy is in a bit of a mess, and they owed people a lot of money.
In June they had a big debt repayment to make, and the only way they were going to be able to make it was by the rest of Europe helping them out.
But they wouldn’t help Greece out unless Greece agreed to some economic reforms. Greece were reluctant.
Effect?
Greece ended up agreeing to the reforms, they were bailed out, and managed to make their debt repayment.
The markets were very volatile around this time, but they soon stabilised and the whole incident was actually quickly forgotten about.
Trouble in the Far East, sending markets south
What?
The market had been worrying about a slowdown in Chinese growth for a while, and in July and August these fears came to a head.
Why?
China has experienced spectacular growth in recent history, and the data indicated a big slowdown.
Effect?
The Chinese stock market fell spectacularly in one day, China’s Black Monday, as it was dubbed. But before that, it had already fallen 15% in July. It is important to note that the Chinese stock market had grown by ~150% in the year before “Black Monday”.
Global stocks fell with China – but now there is widespread agreement that China’s growth is stabilising and not slowing down even faster.
Rising interest in Fed Rates
What?
The event everyone had been waiting for all year has come right at the end of 2015, with the Fed finally raising rates for the first time in 9 years.
Why?
After the GFC, rates have been at rock bottom to support the US economy and help it grow. With strong data coming from the US and signs that the economy is on a good path to recovery, the Federal Reserve have begun to raise rates.
Effect?
The symptoms (strong US economy), and anticipation of a rate rise has seen a very strong US dollar in 2015. We also saw a very weak Australian dollar with the RBA cutting Australian rates. If you went on holiday then this is probably a gloomy reminder, as it has basically meant you haven’t been able buy as much foreign currency for your Australian dollars.
What’s in store for 2016
Well the biggest news around the world in 2016 will surely be February’s launch of Raiz Australia…
But other than that there is a lot of room for the Australian and International stock market to go up, especially after a disappointing 2016. But stock markets have risk and it is never a certainty. Let us know your predictions for 2016 on our Twitter and Facebook pages.

Innovation for the Nation

This week the Federal Government announced a $1bn package to help support innovation in Australia. Over 20 ideas designed to support entrepreneurship, ideas, investments and startups have been released, and as a startup, Raiz welcomes this with open arms. We wanted to let you know a little more about the package and why it’s important for Australia.

Where did it all begin?

It seems to have started in September; from Malcolm Turnbull’s very first speeches as Prime Minister he talked about an Australia that needed to be “agile, innovative, and creative”, an Australia that needed to recognise “disruption as our friend”.

This was promising, but I think we can all be forgiven if we didn’t believe every word coming out of a politician’s mouth… so we waited to see whether any real actions would be taken.

Why is it important?

It is important because until now Australia has been lagging behind. For a country with so many bright and talented individuals, we don’t have the culture of innovation to encourage them into entrepreneurship. The best talent is frequently being lured away to places like San Francisco, Singapore, and London. Australia needed a change so that we could become a nation of innovators, and encourage Australians to start their business journey here. The opening of Fintech Hub, Stone & Chalk, in Sydney this August, was also a welcome sign of change. Stone & Chalk houses over 40 different startups.

What’s in the $1bn package?

We won’t go through all 20 ideas in the package (we’d encourage you to do some of your own reading if you have time), but here are some of our highlights:

Women in Tech: It’s a simple one, for too long we’ve been complaining about the lack of women in the tech industry. This package puts a handy $13m towards encouraging and supporting women to run with their ideas, and start a company.

Tax incentives for investors: Tax may be boring, but it’s important. A major problem in Australian entrepreneurship is funding, and good people with great ideas not being able to obtain funding. Tax incentives will encourage more investment in startups – meaning that more startups will be able to take the next step, and great ideas won’t need to be abandoned.

Stop the boats (leaving): You may not know this but we have been kicking smart people out the country for a long time. With the new “entrepreneur visa”, PhD graduates and other startup founders will be given the chance to stay and build their company in Australia.

Summary:

This won’t turn Australia into the new home for innovation on its own, but it is a great start. The commitment to innovation not only has the backing of the government, but also of the opposition Labor party.

Now what we need is you and all other Australians to start running with your ideas and becoming a part of the new creative, disruptive Australia.

November 2015
What is a dividend?

When you invest, that decision and the patience to stick with it will begin to pay dividends – and not just figuratively! You will literally be paid something called “dividends” or “distributions” (we will use dividends for both) from the ETFs in your portfolio; so what are dividends? And how do they fit in with Raiz?


A dividend is a portion of a company’s earnings that is returned to shareholders. Companies use dividends to pass on their profits directly to their shareholders.


A company will pay a small percentage of its profits to the owner of each share of stock.


Example:
You own 1000 shares of fictional company Mighty Oaks. Mighty Oaks pay a dividend of 5c per Share.


You will receive $50 (Number of Shares Owned X Dividend per Share) in dividend income.


Dividends and ETFs
As an Raiz investor, you’ll have a portfolio of ETFs, so that raises a few more questions…


Do ETFs pay dividends?
Yes! In short – and in fact, for the most part, dividends in ETFs are relatively straightforward. As discussed in our “What is an ETF” blog, ETFs are essentially a combination of shares or bonds bundled together. To put it simply, ETFs basically just take all the dividends from the bundle of shares, and pay all those dividends out to ETF unitholders. 


So, as an ETF shareholder, you benefit from the dividends of all the companies which are contained in your ETF.


What will Raiz do with my dividends?
With Raiz, your dividends and distributions will be automatically reinvested in your portfolio. You can view your dividends and distribution history through the platform, and we will aim to provide information on when the ETFs in your portfolio will pay their dividends.


Why reinvest?
To answer this it might be useful to understand why some companies don’t pay dividends. One reason for this, is growth. Whilst it may make shareholders happy to receive a dividend, it may make them even happier if the company keeps their profits and invests them to grow the business – which will in turn, can increase the value of the stock.


We hope that by reinvesting your dividends back into your Raiz portfolio we are investing in the growth potential of your portfolio.  Another step in the right direction, helping your spare change grow.


Now you know about dividends, let’s hope that you can start benefiting from them soon, with Raiz. Sign up today at 
https://www.Raizinvest.com.au

October 2015
Moustache Money

With Movember just around the corner, people all over the world are preparing to grow a moustache to raise money and awareness for men’s health issues. This got the team at Raiz thinking about what it takes to grow facial hair, and found that it’s very similar to growing your money.

4 key stages to growing:

The Decision

You’ve thought about it for a while, you’ve seen your mate’s ‘stache (or stash of money), and you know how great it could be. It’s time to start growing!

The Envy

It’s been a few days and you’ve not got much to show above your upper lip – you begin to notice every beautiful moustache you pass and wonder why that can’t be you. The same happens with saving, not everyone can put away $100 a week, but it’s about working with what you’ve got.

Don’t get jealous, just be patient, slow and steady wins the race.

The Itch

You’re beginning to get some solid growth, but with this growth comes a nasty itch.

For growing a moustache, the itch is physical one, as prickly hairs scratch your skin, and you start thinking about shaving the itch away.

For growing your money, the itch is one of temptation. The itch to start spending the nice little stash that you’ve accumulated.

The solution? Fight through the itch! You’ve made it this far, so keep at your long-term strategy and keep it growing so that you can reach stage 4…

The Glory

This is what you’ve been waiting for, once you reach this stage nobody remembers The Envy, or The Itch, you’re just happy you made The Decision. You’re either sitting with a pile of savings, or a luscious moustache, either way you feel pretty good.

When saving money, everyone has different definitions of glory, it could be a car, a holiday, or a more stable financial future – whatever your goal is, Raiz wants to help you get there. With our different tools we give you a more natural way to invest, and a new way to let your money grow. All you have to do is remain patient.

So this November, make the decision to Invest the Change with Raiz, grow your mo with Movember, and raise some money for a great cause in the process.

https://www.Raizinvest.com.au

https://au.movember.com

September 2015
Volkswagen fuels market fears, ETFs remain the most reliable ride
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The summary:

Last week, controversy surrounded Volkswagen, as it was revealed that the German automobile manufacturer has cheated on emissions testing for their cars. They have defrauded customers, broken regulators’ rules in a big way, and will face suitably big fines as a result.

What effect has this had on the share price?

Since the news was revealed, Volkswagen lost around 1/3rd of their market value.

This story gives us a timely reminder of why diversification is key, and the benefits of buying into ETFs.

Imagine your portfolio was made up of 100% VW shares. Last week you lost ~33% of portfolio value.

Now imagine if you had some diversified to 50% VW shares. You’ve just lost ~16.5%. This assumes that nothing else in your portfolio loses value.

Now if you had diversified a lot more (maybe using an ETF), to just 1% VW shares. You only lost ~0.33%. Again this assumes that none of the other shares that compose the ETF loses (or gains) value.

It’s a simple example, but it shows the dangers of exposing yourself too much to any one stock. These scandals specific to one company do happen, and companies lose big chunks of value regularly. By using ETFs you can give yourself a smaller exposure to a large number of companies, eliminating the risk that one bad holding will harm your hard earned savings.

Raiz uses 7 different ETFs to construct our portfolios for you, read more on ETFs here, and sign up to Raiz using the link below.

https://www.Raizinvest.com.au

The Power of Compound Returns
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“Compound return is the 8th wonder of the world. He who understands it, earns it. He who doesn’t, pays it”

Albert Einstein wasn’t known for investing, but he got it spot on with this. Let’s understand the power of compound returns, why it’s important and how you can use it.

The concept of return is simple; take Albert who has $1,000 in his account – If he earns a return rate of 8%, he earns return of $80 ($1,000 x 8%), over one year.

Now, the idea of compound returns is pretty simple too, it’s just earning return on your return, over time.  For example, Albert earned $80 of return in year one; in year 2 Albert earns 8% return on his $1,000, and, 8% return on the $80 he earned in year one. So in year two Albert earns returns of $86.40 ($1,080 x 8%), bringing his total balance to $1166.40. A modest increase, but over time this effect snowballs, and after 40 years of compound return, Albert’s $1,000 grows to nearly $22,000, that’s 2200%.

Why is this important to you? By choosing to invest now, you could make compound returns work for you, and help you reach your financial goals in the future.

If you start investing now, and patiently let your money enjoy compound return, the returns could be truly life changing:

- If you’re 25 and choose to start investing now, say $1,000 a year, until your 65, at in return rate of 8%, you could put a handy $280,000towards your retirement.

-  If you wait until you’re 30 to invest, you’ll put about $186,000 away

-  And if you don’t start investing until you’re 35, you’ll only put $120,000 away.


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With Raiz we encourage investors to start small, contribute often, and commit long-term.

Don’t put it off until tomorrow, sign up at https://www.Raizinvest.com.au today!

What is an ETF?

When you choose Raiz, you choose to invest the change – it’s important for you to understand where that change is invested, and why it is one of the best places that it could be.

The money you save with Raiz is invested in your Raiz Investment Account, which is made up of a combination of 7 ETFs.

So what is an ETF? An ETF, or Exchange Traded Fund is essentially a combination of shares or bonds which are bundled together to form one financial product. This bundle can then be traded on the stock exchange, so the public can buy into it, giving investors the opportunity to buy many different stocks or bonds in just one simple transaction, at lower costs.

An Example: An S&P/ASX 200 ETF holds the shares of companies that are in the S&P/ASX 200 (200 of the largest companies on the Australian Securities Exchange), in different weightings, so that the performance of the ETF tracks in line with the performance of the S&P/ASX 200.  The S&P/ASX200 is the most popular benchmark for the performance of Australian stocks.

Why ETFs?

Cost – ETFs give investors all the balance of a managed fund, without all the fees to pay the portfolio manager

Returns – Everyone talks about how hard it is to beat the market, instead of trying to beat the market, ETFs let you be the market.

Easy portfolio construction – In one transaction you can buy an ETF which provides market exposure to Australian equities, International equities or bonds.

Risk – ETFs allow investors to spread risk over a series of investments, as opposed to one or two stocks or bonds. This can lessen the risk of loss, and your exposure to a nasty swing in the price of any individual stock or bond.

It’s no surprise that Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs) are one of the fastest growing investment products in the world, offering investors a simple and cost-effective way to achieve balance in their investment portfolios. 

We at Raiz have done the hard work for you, have selected a basket of widely traded ETF’s that are quoted on the Australian Securities Exchange, the ones that are designed to match well-known benchmarks and combined them into 5 different portfolios ready for your selection.

Sign up today at https://www.Raizinvest.com.au

August 2015
An introduction to dollar-cost averaging
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We are very excited about launching Raiz Down Under, giving Australians the chance to invest their change to build something much bigger. One of the most important messages we want to spread is that when you invest with Raiz, you have chosen a smart and secure way to invest. Let’s look at one of the techniques Raiz utilises to manage and grow your savings effectively-dollar-cost averaging.

The market will go up, the market will go down, being able to pick the low point and see your portfolio grow in value is the dream, but is unlikely when acting on intuition alone. Dollar-cost averaging involves regular investment over time, regardless of movements in the market. This aims to reduce the need for intuition in picking highs and lows in the market.

For example, say you have $1,000 to invest. Instead of investing it all at once, you could invest $100 each month into the market for 10 months, despite the changes in the market value. If for example the stock of choice was priced at $10 the first month, you would purchase 10 units. If during the second month the stock was priced at $5, you would purchase 20 units, and so on. In the end, you would have purchased more shares when prices were lower and fewer shares when prices were higher, having invested more prudently than simply investing the money all at once in a lump sum.

This strategy has the potential to give you a low cost per share relative to the overall average price per share – as you buy more units when the price is low, and less when the price is high. This disciplined strategy is important, ensuring you are not too exposed to falls in the market when you buy at the top; and rewarding you when the market recovers, for buying when the market was falling.

Dollar-cost averaging is most effective in a long term saving strategy. As the market moves up and down, dollar-cost averaging over time reduces your risks of trying to pick the best times to invest from these swings, trending your portfolio towards profitability.

You can utilise Raiz to implement dollar-cost averaging at your own pace by selecting another key feature, recurring deposits.  Raiz will manage your investment, all while saving you time, energy and uncertainty. 

For more information and to register for our beta testing due in November 2015, make sure you visit www.Raizinvest.com.au and sign up!

#invest #investthechange #money
July 2015
Any Amount, AnytimeThe Unique Ways to Invest with Raiz

We are really excited about Raiz coming to Australia and we want to make sure everyone understands the unique opportunities with Raiz! Here at Raiz we have made it easier than ever to fund an investment account. We understand that investing is important, and just as no single investment will ever be suitable for everybody, there is no single, perfect way to fund an investment account.  This is why we built an entirely new micro-investing platform that enables multiple ways to invest.  There are four easy ways to get invested with Raiz:

Round-Ups This is our most innovative feature, round-ups provide a whole new way to save and invest money. The goal of the round-up is to help people invest money every day, even if it’s just a small amount. We think the best way to accomplish this is by linking investing to something we all do every day – spending. Raiz makes it possible to link your spending accounts (EFTPOS, debit and credit cards etc.) and then round up the virtual change from every transaction. These round-ups can then be manually or automatically moved into your Raiz investment account.

Automatic Investments Raiz also makes it easy to set up recurring deposits on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis. It’s as simple as selecting the amount of money you wish to invest regularly, and then choosing a time period. This type of investing is great for setting and maintaining investment goals. Setting up automatic investment can be done in seconds through the app.

Lump Sums In addition to some of the more unique ways of adding money to an account, our users can also invest any amount, at any time, with a simple lump sum investment. This makes it easy to add larger sums of money when they become available or when your investment goals change. It only takes seconds to deposit a lump sum into your investment account, and money is always available for withdrawal the same way: no fees, no penalties.

Raiz Reward This exciting functionality is truly exciting. Not only does Raiz make saving and investing money as easy as possible, we also help find money for you. Raiz can identify rewards programs, credits from other loyalty programs, and offers from third parties that can be converted into investments. What other investment program finds money for you?

With so many unique ways to fund an account, Raiz is creating an entirely new approach to saving and investing money.

So if you are as excited as we are, make sure you sign up at www.Raizinvest.com.au quickly and register your interest with only your email address and we will keep you update on our progress and register you for our Beta testing program commencing later this year.

#investthechange money invest acorns
FROM RAIZ TO NEST EGG

Imagining your Raiz account as a healthy nest egg may be challenging when you first get started. Patience is a virtue in nature AND investing.

If a user adds only $1 per day to their Raiz account, it will typically take about one year before the account generates more than it costs*.  Likewise, money sitting in a bank account may incur more fees than it earns in interest until the balance is large enough.

Raiz provides the most natural way to invest. If you start small, contribute often and commit long-term, you can help build a financial future which is in balance with whatever your life goals may be. Tools like Round Ups, Lump Sum Deposits and Recurring Deposits make contributions easy, and we invest in low cost ETFs so we can pass along low management fees. Using Raiz for a year can cost less than some traditional brokers charge for two trades.

Many Investors decide to start their account with a lump sum (a single payment, perhaps $50, $100, $500 or more) because it will likely earn more money faster. If you are unable to invest a lump sum when you start, Round-Ups remain a smart way to put aside spare change for your future. You’re getting started, and that’s the single most important part of investing: beginning.

Even if you build your account slowly, it will one day be a lot larger than what you started with. Whenever you’re feeling discouraged, think of the mighty oak tree, and have patience.

*Assumes average long term rates of return. 

www.Raizinvest.com.au

#acornsgrow #invest #investing #money #spare change
May 2015
RAIZ: A NATURAL WAY TO INVEST

Hello and thanks for visiting our blog. We want to make your financial life a little easier by offering a simple new way to save and invest, but first let us tell you a bit about ourselves.

Raiz is a group of mathematicians, software engineers, behaviourists and financial professionals who all need to save and invest, and we believe this should be something that happens in the background of life and be as natural and without effort as possible. So we built Raiz as much for ourselves as for you. The idea is to harmonize with human nature. We link something we need to do, investing, with something we do all the time, spending. In this way saving and investing happens automatically, in small increments with ease.

As you may know there are millions of people with - “saving more for their financial future” - high on their “to-do” list. Many are waiting to accumulate a lump sum before they start, and missing out on years of compounding, or they believe they can’t afford to take money out of their pay check, or can’t quite muster the discipline to invest often enough to make a difference. But by breaking the investment process into little pieces and finding creative ways to funnel money into an investment account, more people can invest more often and worry less.

Behind our app is a micro investing engine that rounds up your credit and debit card purchases to the nearest dollar, and steers these micro-monies into your own investment account of diversified index funds. Over time your account builds while the financial engine does all the investing, rebalancing and instantly communicating results to the app on your smartphone. It is fun and cool!

By making the increments small, frequent and automatic, the process is easy. The registration process does take a couple of minutes because you do have to link your bank account debit card or credit card, and set up your investment account parameters, but after that it just happens.

Investing small dollars may seem insignificant at first, but it is a start.

Our commitment to our users is to keep thinking of ways to make the savings and investment process as fun, simple, natural and effective as possible.

Make sure you get on the list at www.Raizinvest.com.au !

#investing #investthechange #money
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