Prepare for Life Winter 2024

Living your best life in retirement

If you’re nearing retirement age, it’s likely you’re wondering if you will have enough saved to give up work and take it easy, particularly as cost-of-living increases hit some of the basic expenses such as energy, insurance, food and health costs.

Fortunately, someone has already worked out what you might need. The Association of Superannuation Funds in Australia (ASFA) updates its Retirement Standard each quarter, which provides a breakdown of expenses for two types of lifestyles: modest and comfortable.

Help for the sandwich generation

If you are feeling a bit like the meat in the sandwich you are not alone. The ‘sandwich generation’ is a growing social phenomenon that impacts people from all walks of life, describing those at a stage of their lives where they are caring for their offspring as well as their elderly parents.
The phenomenon is gathering momentum as we are tending to live longer and have kids later. It even encompasses royalty – Prince William has been dealing with a sick father while juggling school aged kids (as well as a partner dealing with serious health issues).

Markets love certainty

Financial markets can be like finely tuned racehorses, poised to gallop ahead under ideal conditions but often highly reactive to unexpected events.
It’s often said that the markets love certainty. Investors feel more confident when economic conditions are stable and predictable.
But certainty in financial conditions is never a sure thing. Uncertainty is always just around the corner with the possibility of changes in interest rates, new laws or regulations, upheavals in overseas markets, a breakdown in Australia’s relationship with a major trading partner, and wars and political instability.

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