Retirees are paying a high price as the world stimulates its way out of the GFC (Great Recession). After a 30-year bull market to the lowest interest rates the world has ever seen, bonds have become highly priced and now don’t generate enough to meet income needs. Just 5 years ago the average income from $100,000 invested in a 10 year Australian Government Bond (10yrs) was $5,600 p.a. – now it’s less than half at $2,600 p.a.
When you go shopping, do you use cash, your debit card, or a credit card? Instead, why not use a cash-back credit card and make money while you shop? It sounds contradictory, but Goudreau elaborates. "With a great cash-back card, you can make money when you spend money," she says. "The key is to keep your spending rates the same and pay your balance off in full at the end of every month. It's also important to pay your bill on time. That way, you're not paying interest or getting hit with any late fees, and any cash back you earn is pure profit.
India has an underground economy, with a 2006 report alleging that India topped the worldwide list for black money with almost $1,456 billion stashed in Swiss banks. This would amount to 13 times the country's total external debt. These allegations have been denied by the Swiss Banking Association. James Nason, the Head of International Communications for the Swiss Banking Association, suggested "The (black money) figures were rapidly picked up in the Indian media and in Indian opposition circles, and circulated as gospel truth. However, this story was a complete fabrication. The Swiss Bankers Association never published such a report. Anyone claiming to have such figures (for India) should be forced to identify their source and explain the methodology used to produce them." A recent step taken by Prime Minister Modi, on 8 November 2016, involved the demonetization of all 500 and 1000 rupee bank notes (replaced by new 500 and 2000 rupee notes) in order to return black money into the economy.
Truebill is an app that helps you save money by identifying recurring subscriptions and other bills and helping you cut costs by negotiating better rates and fees. One of their partnerships is with Acradia Power, which has the potential to save you up to 30% on your electric bill. It searches for better power rates in areas where competition is allowed, and it locks in the better prices for you.
In focusing on your wealth management goals, investment income is obviously critical but you might fund your goals from wider sources of income. A typical long-term portfolio might produce about half its return as income and the other half as capital growth, though in times of duress the capital growth component wanes. In this low-interest rate climate, some sources of income have become quite expensive and may prove disappointing against your spending needs. But by tax efficiently and sustainably drawing income from wider sources, you might meet your goals while more prudently balancing risk against reward.