Financial

  • Future Fund returns may slow: Costello AAP - 8 hours ago

    Future Fund chair Peter Costello says returns won't be as strong as recent years as global central banks move to unwind low interest rates settings. "Prudent, patient investing has been key to navigating markets since the fund was created in 2006," Mr Costello, the former Liberal treasurer who was architect of the fund, said on Wednesday. "It seems likely that generally returns in the future will be lower than in recent years," Mr Costello said.

  • Team China takes on country's rumour-driven markets AFP - 14 hours ago
    Team China takes on country's rumour-driven markets

    Chinese authorities have deployed vast sums to try to stabilise slumping share prices, but have to contend with a rumour-driven market and investors like Wang Youfu, whose latest sure thing is a chemical firm that lost $180 million last year. "The Chinese stock market is purely speculation," Wang said, trading on his smartphone from his home in a suburb of Shanghai, China's financial hub. Regularly described as a "casino", the Chinese stock market is a gambling den in which the odds are stacked by the dealer -- the ruling Communist Party.

  • Are millennials smiling all the way to the poorhouse? Bankrate.com - 22 hours ago

    Kristen Heinzinger's future brightened as soon as she moved into her parents' basement. Millennials are persistently optimistic about the state of their personal finances, especially compared with older age groups. Millennials like Heinzinger have undoubtedly entered adulthood with sizable financial hurdles.

  • Gunns liquidators give assurances AAP - Tue, Sep 1, 2015 5:56 PM AEST

    The administrators of Tasmania's failed Gunns forestry company have promised to go easy on local businesses as they work to collect more than $2 billion owed to creditors. There are fears that contractors will be pursued to recoup funds and Tasmanian Resources Minister Paul Harriss said liquidators PPB Advisory have explained there are obligations to ASIC and the courts to ensure creditors are treated fairly. "They will have regard to the financial circumstances of Tasmanian businesses including contractors and the need to avoid further insolvencies," he said.

  • Rates set to stay on hold AAP - Tue, Sep 1, 2015 4:29 PM AEST
    Rates set to stay on hold

    The Reserve Bank appears unmoved by the recent routs on global share markets and is likely to keep the cash rate unchanged for some time. Governor Glenn Stevens noted recent market volatility, but also said the US economy is strengthening, and the US Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) would soon raise its interest rate for the first time in over nine years. Westpac chief economist Bill Evans expects the RBA to keep rates on hold well into 2016.

  • Interest rates kept on hold Yahoo7 Finance - Tue, Sep 1, 2015 2:30 PM AEST
    Interest rates kept on hold

    The Reserve Bank has left interest rates on hold in September at a record low of 2.0 per cent.

  • Online retail sales sink in July AAP - Tue, Sep 1, 2015 1:55 PM AEST

    NAB chief economist Alan Oster said Treasurer Joe Hockey's $20,000 instant asset write-offs for small businesses, announced in the May budget, could have contributed to the June surge. Despite the month's slowdown, online sales rose 6.2 per cent to $17.4 billion in the year to July. Online sales now make up around seven per cent of traditional retail spending.

  • RBA unlikely to change interest rate AAP - Tue, Sep 1, 2015 9:59 AM AEST

    The Reserve Bank is expected to look through recent market turmoil and keep the cash rate unchanged for the foreseeable future. All 16 economists surveyed by AAP expect the RBA to keep the cash rate unchanged at its September meeting on Tuesday, and only three expect another cut before the middle of next year. The central bank cut its interest rate by a quarter of a percentage point in February and again in May, taking the cash rate to a new record low of two per cent.

  • Merkel: expect Greece to fulfil obligations after election Associated Press - Tue, Sep 1, 2015 12:41 AM AEST
    Merkel: expect Greece to fulfil obligations after election

    German Chancellor Angela Merkel is making clear she expects Greece to continue complying with its obligations to creditors after upcoming elections, and says she doesn't see any possibility of reducing ...

  • Best and worst for drivers: How each state fared Bankrate.com - Mon, Aug 31, 2015 8:00 PM AEST

    When we set out to build a ranking for American drivers, our primary interest was to rate the overall experience for motorists in each state. There are a number of ways to do this, of course. For our ranking, ...

  • You can't avoid mortgage closing costs Bankrate.com - Mon, Aug 31, 2015 8:00 PM AEST

    If you qualify for refinancing, determined partly by the value of your home, you will have some decisions to make. The lender can include the costs in the loan balance or the interest rate or use a combination of both. It's the interest expense often missed by the scheduling of monthly payments.

  • Ouch! My life insurance is going up 1,233% Bankrate.com - Mon, Aug 31, 2015 8:00 PM AEST

    The short answer is "no." You won't be able to convert an existing term life insurance policy to a permanent one with anyone other than your current insurance company or an insurer that acquires the company and all of its policy obligations. An insurance company usually offers an opportunity to convert term insurance coverage to a permanent, cash-value-type policy.

  • RBA expected to hold cash rate AAP - Mon, Aug 31, 2015 7:15 AM AEST
    RBA expected to hold cash rate

    Academics do not expect the Reserve Bank to lower the cash rate despite global market volatility and weak domestic investment figures. The central bank will hold its monthly board meeting on Tuesday and it is widely expected to keep the cash rate at a record low of two per cent, where it has stood since May. Australian National University's Timo Henckel says wild swings on global stock markets have made investors edgy, the economic news coming out of China is not favourable and figures last week showing domestic private investment has plummeted.

  • China’s Next Problem: Paying for Its Stock-Market Bailout The Wall Street Journal - Mon, Aug 31, 2015 2:59 AM AEST

    China’s epic stock-market drops over the past week give the impression that Beijing may have given up on trying to prop up the market or is at least retreating to defend a lower level. The question is, what will the government do with all that stock that it already has bought? Unlike the U.S. bailouts of 2008 and 2009, China is in the unenviable position of having bought near the market’s top, not at the bottom.

  • RBA unlikely to change rate stance AAP - Sat, Aug 29, 2015 10:04 AM AEST
    RBA unlikely to change rate stance

    The Reserve Bank is expected to look through recent market turmoil and keep the cash rate unchanged for the foreseeable future. All 16 economists surveyed by AAP expect the RBA to keep the cash rate unchanged at its September meeting on Tuesday, and only three expect another cut before the middle of next year. The central bank cut its interest rate by a quarter of a percentage point in February and again in May, taking the cash rate to a new record low of two per cent.

  • Adopt normal or 'severe' car maintenance schedule? Bankrate.com - Fri, Aug 28, 2015 8:00 PM AEST

    Which maintenance schedule should I be following? It's great to hear that you are reading your owners manual. It's a terrific source of information, yet it seems very few car owners actually consult it in advance of a problem.

  • How do you research crime in a neighborhood? Bankrate.com - Fri, Aug 28, 2015 8:00 PM AEST

    What is the most accurate way to research crime data in a particular community? Many of the national real estate listing sites are rife with crime stats. For a bigger picture, you can try these other free sites: the FBI-supported Bureau of Justice Statistics, CrimeReports.com and City-Data.com, among others.

  • UBS pays $1.7 mn for 'apparent' sanctions violations AFP - Fri, Aug 28, 2015 1:05 PM AEST
    UBS pays $1.7 mn for 'apparent' sanctions violations

    Swiss bank UBS has agreed to pay US authorities $1.7 million to settle "apparent" violations of rules banning transactions benefiting officially designated terrorists, the Treasury Department said Thursday. The Treasury's Office of Foreign Assets Control said the bank had handled 222 US securities transactions worth $2.5 million between 2008 and 2013 on behalf of an individual client who was blacklisted by OFAC under US sanctions. The UBS settlement agreement with OFAC labeled the transactions "apparent" because UBS at the time had considered them internal to the bank and so not in violation of US rules.

  • US average rate on 30-year home loans drops to 3.84 percent Associated Press - Fri, Aug 28, 2015 2:35 AM AEST

    Average U.S. long-term mortgage rates dropped this week to their lowest levels since May. Here's a look at rates for fixed- and adjustable-rate mortgages this week and over the past year:

  • Ukraine reaches debt relief deal with creditors Associated Press - Fri, Aug 28, 2015 12:12 AM AEST
    Ukraine reaches debt relief deal with creditors

    The Ukrainian government said Thursday it has reached a deal with its international bondholders to lighten its public debt burden, a crucial move that will help the country avoid default as it tries to ...

  • Where will mortgage rates head next week? Bankrate.com - Thu, Aug 27, 2015 8:00 PM AEST

    Will rates go up, down or remain unchanged? Intro Up 46% Down 18% Unchanged 36% Panel Prediction Up Down Unchanged 46% 18% 36% This week (Aug. 27-Sept. 2), 46% of the panelists believe mortgage rates will ...

  • Beijing appears to wind down share-buying AAP - Thu, Aug 27, 2015 9:01 AM AEST

    China's leaders are winding down a strategy of trying to push up slumping stock prices by spending billions of dollars to buy shares. After the Chinese market benchmark soared to a peak on June 12 and then reversed course and plunged 30 per cent, Beijing reached back to the era of central planning and intervened directly. State banks lent billions of dollars to a government finance company to support prices.

  • Money Moves to Make Before Age 30 US News - Thu, Aug 27, 2015 12:53 AM AEST

    You might face some serious financial obligations, from rent to student loan debt, while lacking the salary to leave a comfortable cushion each month. Then there's also the pressure to start saving early for retirement, especially if you have a full-time job that comes with 401(k) benefits.

  • How to Handle a Major Financial Disruption US News - Wed, Aug 26, 2015 11:00 PM AEST

    When Eric McClain had a new baby on the way in 2008, he found himself unemployed and in the middle of a home renovation. The unemployment was unexpected, due to a bad fit with a new employer, and it took him about two months to find a new temporary job. "I had to break all the rules: 'Don't take money out of this account.' 'Don't let debt run up,'" says McClain, who is a financial planner.

  • 8 Tips to Make Sure Your Next Apartment Is Legit US News - Wed, Aug 26, 2015 10:50 PM AEST

    What's more, while you're searching for apartments, you also have to be aware that not all listings and landlords are completely legit. While searching online for apartments makes the whole process a lot more convenient, some search sites can also be full of scams. Some sites allow you to check out reviews for the apartments from residents, which makes it a lot easier to feel safe and confident with the apartment you end up choosing.

  • 10 questions to ask when you apply for a mortgage Bankrate.com - Wed, Aug 26, 2015 8:00 PM AEST

    Closing Costs Getting ready to buy a home? Make sure you ask these 10 key questions at mortgage application time. 1. What is the interest rate on this mortgage? Ask for the lender's loan estimate, which ...

  • Savvy Money Moves For Gen Y (Pt. 1) Forbes - Wed, Aug 26, 2015 7:42 PM AEST

    Millennials have a lot of financial obstacles to overcome. But here's a good, common sense plan to get on the right track and stay there, building wealth for the future.

  • Market volatility not over yet: Hockey AAP - Wed, Aug 26, 2015 5:50 PM AEST

    The Australian share market may have enjoyed another positive finish, but Treasurer Joe Hockey has warned investors not to get too comfortable. An interest rate cut in China appears to have had a calming influence after massive share selling there over the past few days. "There will be volatility in the markets," Mr Hockey said on the sidelines of a national reform summit in Sydney.

  • China struggles to keep economy on track AAP - Wed, Aug 26, 2015 11:49 AM AEST

    China's slump is shaking the world economy, turning a country long seen as a growth engine into a possible threat. The slowdown started as a side effect of the Communist Party's plan to steer the world's second-largest economy to a "new normal" of lower, steadier growth. "There are pockets of extreme weakness in China's economy but also areas of strength," said Mark Williams, chief Asia economist for Capital Economics in London.

  • Scammers becoming trickier AAP - Wed, Aug 26, 2015 8:01 AM AEST

    Scammers are increasingly sophisticated at coming up with ways to trick you out of your money. Scammers will try all sorts of things, Australian Bankers Association chief executive Stephen Munchenberg says. With most financial transactions now done online, scammers have adapted their techniques to try to get victims' money and financial details.

  • Nervous gains in Asia, in volatile response to China rate cut AFP - Wed, Aug 26, 2015 7:35 AM AEST
    Nervous gains in Asia, in volatile response to China rate cut

    Asian shares made tentative gains Wednesday after a China interest rate cut designed to soothe fears about stalling growth in the world's number-two economy, but more volatility was forecast in a crisis that has panicked global markets. China's central bank reduced interest rates and slashed the amount of money banks need to hold in reserve on Tuesday -- its second such double move in two months -- in a bid to bolster slowing growth. The measures are not only expected to help boost cash flow in China, but also revive confidence that Beijing can steer the world's second-largest economy away from a hard landing and keep global growth on course.

  • Choppy stocks begin to calm after China rate cut AFP - Wed, Aug 26, 2015 4:52 AM AEST
    Choppy stocks begin to calm after China rate cut

    Shanghai shares rose on Wednesday, with early choppy trading easing after an interest rate cut in China began to soothe fears about stalling growth and arrest the crisis that has rattled global markets. China's central bank reduced interest rates and slashed the amount of money banks need to hold in reserve on Tuesday -- its second such double move in two months -- in a bid to bolster its economy and end the worst stock market rout in almost two decades. China is the world's second-largest economy and top trading nation, so signs it is slowing have sent financial markets into turmoil, particularly when the US Federal Reserve is expected to raise interest rates in the next few months.

  • Hill analysts lower 2015 budget deficit forecast to $426B Associated Press - Wed, Aug 26, 2015 4:11 AM AEST
    Hill analysts lower 2015 budget deficit forecast to $426B

    Providing political ammunition to both parties, Congress' official budget analyst projected Tuesday that this year's federal deficit will drop to $426 billion, the lowest shortfall of Barack Obama's presidency. ...

  • 9 Ways Consumers Can Avoid or Minimize Bank Fees US News - Wed, Aug 26, 2015 2:02 AM AEST

    If you think bank fees are getting higher and more numerous, you're right. A new study by WalletHub of 35 large banks found that the average consumer checking account has 25 different fees, and the average customer pays about $470 in fees every year. "Bank fees are getting more expensive, and they're getting harder to avoid," says Richard Barrington, senior financial editor for MoneyRates.com, which found in a 2015 survey that monthly maintenance fees for checking accounts have risen 8.36 percent in the past three years, twice the rate of inflation, and that only 25 percent of checking accounts did not charge a monthly fee.

  • China juggles growth and reform plans as economy cools Associated Press - Wed, Aug 26, 2015 12:39 AM AEST

    China's slump is shaking the world economy, turning a country long seen as a growth engine into a possible threat. The slowdown started as a side effect of the Communist Party's plan to steer the world's ...