ASX Education: Active v Passive

Much has been written recently about the relative merits of taking an active approach or just letting your funds track an index. The growth of passive funds has been extraordinary. The head of Vanguard in Australia was in the news last week as the FUM have grown to $5.4 trillion. $2.9 trillion is tracking indices…

ASX Education: Full Service Brokers

When I started broking in 1982 there were no personal computers let alone email or online broking. Everyone used full service broking because they had to. Now you don’t have to but the industry still exists and if you talk to most people about full service brokers they will immediately launch into the terrible experiences…

ASX Education: Do I need an SMSF?

Thanks to compulsory superannuation most people are invested in managed funds. You didn’t really make a choice to invest in managed funds but courtesy of the cozy relationship between employers and fund managers almost all of you tick that little box that says “put my super in your default fund” when you are employed. The…

Stock Market Secrets: Ithaca

I wrote this article a few years ago and I reproduce it for my 50th Birthday.    Ithaca is the island in Greece that Odysseus had so much trouble returning to in Homer’s Odyssey. On his way he survives run ins with the Cicones, Polyphemus (Cyclops to you), Circe, the Sirens, Scylla, the winds of…

Stock Market Secrets: Forex Trading

YOU TOO CAN BE A FOREX TRADER So the $A goes through parity, in the other direction this time, and again every Tom Dick and Harry is suddenly a currency expert. The same thing happened when it first rose through parity in October 2010. It's as if the Aussie dollar hitting the big figure miraculously…

Marcus Today on Life: Tulipomania

1623, Tulip Mania. A single tulip bulb sells for a thousand Dutch florins, seven times the average annual wage. The average tulip trader makes sixty thousand florins a month. 400 times the annual wage. 40 bulbs sell for 100,000 florins. You could have bought 3,333 pigs for the same price. People were selling possessions to…

ASX Education: 11.7%pa for 33 years

From 1941 to the low in 1974, the average annual compound return on the All Ordinaries Index for 33 years was 2.9 per cent per annum. Take off inflation of 4 per cent and you were going backwards. And that doesn't include 1929 to 1941, which would have pulled it even lower. In the next…

Stock Market Secrets: Hail Caesar

Anyone who’s been to Las Vegas will know what I mean when I say it’s a place that everyone has to visit but no one wants to stay. I tried to get married again. Elvis was prepared to pick us up from out hotel in a stretch limo, take us to the chapel, be our…