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Issue 5, June 2018

From the MD's Desk

By Rodney M. DeGabriele – Principal & Managing Director 

Welcome to Affinity Insights!

It has been a busy couple of months here at Affinity Private.

We have had the pleasure of the Platinum Asset Management founder, Kerr Neilson, joining us for an interactive discussion on the current economic and investment environments, how investment markets have changed over the course of his career and where Platinum currently sees opportunities around the globe. We also held a cryptocurrency event in Melbourne and a one-on-one in Sydney with Grant Wilson, the founder of Civic Capital Advisors. Grant discussed various topics relating to crypto and the significance of operational risks, the implications for asset allocation, how digital currencies differ, and why all of the fuss You can read more about these events below. 

Tax time is upon us! We have two weeks before the end of the financial year and whilst it’s not exactly an exciting time, it is a busy one. Should you have any last minute queries or concerns regarding your personal situation and/or investment portfolio, please contact your adviser directly or the office at enquiries@affinityprivate.com.au.

And finally, on an exciting note, we are pleased to share with you that due to outgrowing our current office space at 1 Collins Street, we will be moving. We look forward to meeting with you at our new office at 333 Collins Street from August onwards. We will be sending another update with full details after we have settled in at the new home of Affinity Private, however, our email, phone and postal details will remain the same.

I do hope you like this issue of Affinity Insights, and we welcome any feedback or suggestions for future topics.

Briefing with Kerr Neilson

Founder of Platinum Asset Management

We held an informal briefing with the founder of Platinum Asset Management, Kerr Neilson. He is one of Australia’s most successful portfolio managers.

Kerr, with the help of Andrew Clifford, founded Platinum Asset Management in 1994 with an emphasis on building portfolios of misunderstood companies that were experiencing change or mispricing due to transient factors or intuitive biases applied by market participants at large.  A track record of making money in both bull and bear markets and successfully side stepping both the 1987 crash and tech bubble collapse have seen Kerr approach cult status as portfolio manager and build one of the most successful funds management businesses in Australian history. 

Kerr lead an interactive discussion on the current economic and investment environments, he also discussed how investment markets have changed over the course of his career, and where Platinum currently see opportunities. Overall, the afternoon was very informative and allowed clients the chance to interact with Kerr on an informal basis. We appreciate Kerr taking time out of his day to meet with us.

Briefing with Grant Wilson

Founder of Civic Capital Advisors

Cryptocurrencies – more than just hype?

Grant Wilson is one of Australia’s most successful macro investors, having managed money for some of the world’s most discerning investors, including Australia’s Future Fund, George Soros and numerous others.

Grant discussed with us the cryptocurrency landscape, including how digital currencies differ, their costs, risks and benefits, what the current state of play at home and abroad is, what are the implications for asset allocation, the significance of operational risks and why all the fuss.

Grants presentation was excellent and very informative and it was a great opportunity to hear from an experienced investment specialist on the most hotly debated asset class of our time.

Downsizer Contribution

By Meg Heffron

Downsizing contributions into superannuation

From July 1 last year it became much harder to build up more superannuation thanks to a tightening of the limits on contributions. The maximum “concessional contributions” (employer, salary sacrifice contributions or contributions made by someone who claims a tax deduction for them) was reduced to $25,000 a year. At the same time caps on “non-concessional contributions” (contribtions made from someone’s own money for which they do not claim a tax deduction) were reduced from $180,000 a year to $100,000 a year and even zero for anyone with more than $1.6 million in superannuation.

At the same time, legislation was under way to introduce a brand new type of contribution that provides far more freedom for older Australians to make contributions. These new contributions are known as “downsized contributions” and they will start from July 1, 2018.

Read more

In the Media

By Dr. Ross Walker

Body works: Auto-Immune Disease

The function of every organism is to survive. This survival is achieved by the finely tuned processes of metabolism and homeostasis. Metabolism is defined as the chemical processes that occur within a living organism in order to maintain life. Homeostasis is defined as the tendency towards a relatively stable equilibrium between interdependent elements, especially as maintained by physiological processes. 

Or, to put it more simply, we need a balanced set of reactions in our body to keep us living.

Read more