from Andrew Harris principal of Minerds Bell Consultancy Group
Hi, welcome to our June update. This month I’d like to share: –
- How we are responding to the easing of the COVID-19 restrictions,
- Information about Allocated Pension payment changes that might affect you, and lastly
- Some cautiously positive news about investment markets from AMP Chief Economist, Dr. Shane Oliver.
The team and client appointment update
Thank you for your patience and understanding over the last couple of months.
With the easing of restrictions, we have moved back to a new “normal”:
- Our staff are returning to the office after 6 weeks of being in a single day per week. We will still be observing “social distancing” as best we can. This includes having a maximum number of staff in meeting rooms and continuing personal hygiene practices.
- We are now offering client appointments in the office where you are comfortable doing so and this suits you. Meeting rooms will be wiped down after each meeting.
Of course, we are happy to conduct reviews “remotely” if you are not yet comfortable being out and about.
Finally, congratulations to Tao and Helen who have just had their first anniversary with Minerds Bell. They have both been great additions to the team. Well done ladies!
Allocated Pension Minimum Payments
As you might be aware as a “COVID-19” initiative, the Federal Government has temporarily halved what are known Allocated Pension “minimum payment levels” for the 2019-20 and 2020-21 tax years.
If you hold an Allocated Pension and are receiving “minimum payments”, these changes affect you. While you have no obligation to change anything, you have the option of reducing your income payments for the 2020-21 financial year if this suits you.
As I mentioned in my Feedsy “flash” last week, some Allocated Pension providers, such as AMP have automatically applied these new levels to clients on “minimums payments”.
We understand that this might not suit you or be in line with your financial plans. Payments can quite easily be restored to previous or a nominated amount, but we may need to help you do this.
Please contact us to assist if you have questions about your Allocated Pension payments.
Investment Market Update
Lastly, some positive news about Investment Markets from Dr Shane Oliver, Chief Economist, AMP Capital.
Share markets continued to rally strongly over the past week as economic reopening in developed countries and stimulus measures continued. From their March lows global shares are up 32% and Australian shares are up 29%.
The three big risks remain:
- A second wave of coronavirus cases (that’s a low risk in Australia, but high in the US);
- Collateral damage from the shutdowns resulting in a delayed or very slow recovery as bankruptcies surge over the next six months and unemployment goes even higher; and
- A serious escalation in US/China tensions (so far is been relatively mild).
As always, we are here for you.
If you have any concerns about your Super, Pensions, Investments or your current plans, please give your adviser a call or send them an email.
Take care. That’s all for now,
Principal – Minerds Bell Consultancy Group