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As a central knowledge portal to the retirement and related industries, EBnet publishes a range of daily articles submitted by a range of industry organisations, experts and contributors. Readers can also comment on and contribute to articles.

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Comparing the benefits of a Tax Free Savings Account and a Retirement Annuity Fund

The benefits of saving are well known, as are the tax benefits offered by tax-free savings accounts (TFSA) and retirement annuity funds (RA). But what is unclear is which savings vehicle is better. Before we look at what the benefits of each, let's look at factors to consider when choosing between a TFSA and an RA. What is the difference? The TFSA was introduced by the National Treasury to encourage South Africans to save in an easy, flexible and affordable way for future expenses and long term investment goals. To allow self-employed individuals and investors facing a retirement shortfall to save in their personal capacity, specifically for retirement, RA’s were created. The tax benefit Bot

FSCA warns the public against Mr Tom Zambon

The Financial Sector Conduct Authority (“FSCA”) published a media release on 21 November 2019 warning the public against the activities of Mr Tom Zambon. It is now brought to the attention of the FSCA that there was another Mr Tom Zambon who was employed by Ashburton in Jersey in the past. The person purporting to be Mr Tom Zambon in South Africa using social media to solicit funds from the public is not the same Mr Tom Zambon who used to be employed by Ashburton in Jersey. According to the FSCA’s records, the individual purporting to be Mr Tom Zambon in South Africa is not an authorised Financial Services Provider (FSP); is not a representative of an authorised FSP and there is no record of

FSCA warns the public against Mr Martin Sethole and Nadex Investments

The Financial Sector Conduct Authority (FSCA) warns the public against doing any financial services business with Mr Martin Sethole and Nadex Investments (Pty) Ltd, Neither Mr Sethole nor Nadex Investments are authorised to give any financial advice or render any intermediary services in terms of the Financial Advisory and Intermediary Services Act, 2002 (FAIS Act). The FSCA received information that Mr Sethole is encouraging members of the public to invest in a binary options strategy with Nadex Investments and promises high returns within 48 hours. He alleges that Nadex Investments is a subsidiary of AIP Capital Management (Pty) Ltd, an authorised financial services provider with FSP numbe

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) Article Iv Report on South Africa Following the 2019 Consultat

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has published the outcome of its Article IV Consultation with South Africa, which was held from 6 – 21 November 2019. Part of the surveillance function, as prescribed in the IMF’s Articles of Agreement, requires that the IMF visits each member country twice a year to conduct economic and financial assessments of government policies and provide policy recommendations. The IMF staff held meetings with the South African government, the South African Reserve Bank, stateowned enterprises (SOEs), business, organised labour, and academia. The outcome of their consultation is summarised in an Article IV Report, which was also considered by the IMF Executive Boar

Appearances ARE deceiving! Business email compromise – The million Rand threat

What is business email compromise? Business email compromise (BEC), also known as interception/impersonation fraud, can be defined as ‘a criminal act where cyber attackers illegally access an email account and communicate as if they are the user’ (Sabric, 2019). Cyber criminals gain access to an individual’s business email and impersonate people who use that account (executives, senior managers or supply chain partners) in order to intercept and redirect invoices and also change banking account details to their nominated account details. They can also in some cases trick staff into authorising fraudulent transfers. The risk is further increased where document management systems can be access

Sasfin collects award second year in a row!

The Sasfin BCI Flexible Income Fund won again last night at the prestigious Raging Bull Awards. The Fund, managed by Philip Bradford, won the award for Best South African Multi-Asset Income Fund over 3 years ending December 2019, by generating a cumulative return of 39% for the period, beating inflation by 25% and the JSE All Share Index by 15%. The awards remain coveted, with competition increasing dramatically over the years. In 1997, there were less than 50 unit trust funds when the Raging Bulls were first presented; now there are more than 1000, and a repeat of the win from last year's event ensures Bradford and Sasfin signal themselves as managers that investors can choose with confide

Matriculants with maths distinctions urged to choose their degrees wisely

As long as South Africa’s pipeline of future problem solvers continues to deliver a declining trickle feed of competent mathematics learners, the country cannot expect to achieve a meaningful growth trajectory. This is according to Lusani Mulaudzi, the new President of the Actuarial Society of South Africa. Only 2%, or 4 415, of matriculants who wrote mathematics last year achieved a distinction (80% or more), according to the Department of Education National Senior Certificate School Subject Report for 2019. Mulaudzi says the implication is that only 4 415 learners have a real chance of studying towards professions that provide the problem-solving skills needed to address South Africa’s mos

FSCA warns the public against Moneyweb Private Bank

The Financial Sector Conduct Authority (FSCA) warns the public not to conduct any financial services business or invest funds with Moneyweb Corporate Bank Limited (also trading as Moneyweb Private Bank). The Authority has been made aware of suspected breaches of financial sector laws by this entity. Moneyweb Private Bank is not authorised in terms of the Financial Advisory and Intermediary Services Act, 2002 (FAIS Act), to render any financial advice and intermediary services. According to information received by the FSCA, Moneyweb Private Bank is fraudulently using the logo of Moneyweb – a South African media company, to solicit investments from the public. Based on the information received

36ONE Asset Management’s application against FSCA dismissed by Financial Services Tribunal, fined R3

The Financial Services Tribunal has dismissed an application by 36One Asset Management (Pty) Ltd (36ONE) to have a decision taken by the Financial Sector Conduct Authority (FSCA) that 36ONE had solicited investment into unapproved funds set aside. The FSCA imposed an administrative penalty of R350 000 on 36ONE, which the tribunal upheld. The ruling was made on 20 January 2020. The FSCA’s decision relates to the publication by 36ONE of certain unapproved offshore funds on their website, periodic newsletters and presentations made to their clients between August 2015 and March 2018. The FSCA found that by publishing and marketing these funds, 36ONE effectively solicited investment in those una

Intergovernmental Fintech working group publishes research on the Fintech startup sector

The Intergovernmental Fintech Working Group (IFWG) has published its first Fintech Landscaping Report. Fintech is technology-enabled financial innovation which can lead to new business models, applications, processes and products, and is transforming the financial services sector globally. Fintech has the potential to reduce costs and frictions, increase efficiency and competition, narrow information asymmetry, as well as broaden access and be an enabler for financial inclusion. The aim of the research was to have a clearer understanding of the Fintech market to enable policymakers and regulators to better manage risk and enable innovation. This balance between innovation and risk is critica

20 Investment tips for 2020

With the start of a new year and a new decade in full swing, Marriott Asset Management provides 20 investment tips for 2020. Establish your financial goals. This will enable you to put together an effective investment plan with an appropriate long term allocation to stocks, bonds and other asset classes. Start saving as early as you can. The earlier you start saving for your goals the more time your investments will have to benefit from the compounding effect of reinvested income and capital accumulation. View investing as a marathon, not a sprint. Investing your money for 5 years or more is generally a good idea. Investing is best suited to long-term financial goals, like saving for your re

What is your 2020 vision?

Tired of the same old “New Year, new you” resolutions? What if you could change the cliché of wanting to lose 20 kilograms and having a six-pack to simply being happy? New Year’s resolutions are often rooted in the constant comparison to everyone else’s “picture perfect” moments. Here’s a thought: Instead of thinking about things you need to change to “fix” yourself, why not focus on being the best version of you? (not the “fixed” version, simply the best version). Think about it, if you bought a race horse to win a lot of races (and, of course, to make some money!), how would you treat that horse? You’d feed it well and you definitely wouldn’t run it into the ground. You’ll make sure that i

South Africa seeks energy solutions fit for the Fourth Industrial Revolution

Getting to grips with South Africa’s energy sector is no easy task. It’s a moving target, with many often-competing interests that need to be delicately balanced. The government has committed to speeding up the pace towards renewable energy, in line with its international commitments and the requirements of a changing economic structure. A key feature of the Fourth Industrial Revolution is the shift from fossil fuels to smarter, cleaner renewable energy. In South Africa that shift is hindered by the weaknesses of state-owned utility Eskom. Now a new report suggests there may be a way (or several ways) forward… The elephant in the room is Eskom. No change can happen in isolation of the state’

Seven dominant themes impacting investors

Alexander Forbes Investments examined the developing themes and trends impacting both South African and global investors in 2020 and beyond. According to Gyongyi King, Chief Investment Officer and Lebo Thubisi, Head of Manager Research, the most dominant themes impacting investors are: Theme one: The asset management industry is consolidating – it’s a scale game Larger investment managers have used their scale to expand profit margins, while offering products at lower costs. This means small and midsized investment managers are lacking scale and battling to maintain profitability. High fees and subpar returns from active funds have led to a flood of assets from active to passive managers. “T

Reviving South Africa’s economic growth – we need fiscal credibility, economic reforms and an invest

Global outlook – slightly more supportive Global economic growth has stabilised but the recovery remains sluggish. The slowdown in the United States and China is expected to be more than offset by improvement in some large emerging markets, the euro area and the United Kingdom. Inflation expectations remain stable, at or below targets in advanced economies and trending lower in emerging markets. Consequently, monetary policy in many advanced economies is expected to remain loose, which will support global growth. The direction of the US dollar has a disproportionate impact on the global economy as global trade is priced in US dollars to a large extent. The US dollar is expected to weaken aga

FSCA Communication 7 of 2019 (PFA)

The Financial Sector Conduct Authority (“the Authority”) issued FSCA Communication 7 of 2019 (PFA) (“the Communication”) on 12 December 2019 with the intention of addressing the existing conflict of interest relating to principal officers appointed on boards of funds, whilst also being employed by service providers. The Communication has far-reaching impacts on various funds, specifically the Retail Umbrella Funds environment, as it is common practise that some Retail Umbrella Funds has a principal officer, which is simultaneously employed by the sponsor. These sponsors are traditionally within a group of companies that is related to the benefit administrator, which is deemed to be a service

What new employees do not know about their first pay slip

Every first-time employee has aspirations and visions as to how they will spend their first month’s salary. Young employees are, however, often disappointed by the actual Rand amount which reaches their bank account – even after they believed they had negotiated a competitive remuneration package. “The majority of first-time employees are entirely focused on mastering the responsibilities of their new job and look forward to welcoming the receipt of their first salary into their bank accounts.However, many find themselves ill prepared when they realise that the total amount they are actually taking home differs substantially from the amount they assumed they would be getting,” says André Lin

Why beneficiary nominations are central to estate planning

The annual review of your financial and estate plan is an opportunity to assess and reconsider the underlying assets in your estate. However, reviewing beneficiary nominations on policies is often neglected during this process. A well-executed financial plan involves a proper analysis of assets, liabilities, life policies and retirement benefits, which ultimately translates into a properly structured and implemented estate plan. A proper process and structured annual review help ensure that your circumstances are considered in totality. The correct use of beneficiary nominations on policies ensures a truly robust financial- and estate plan. It’s also important to dispel any misconceptions s

Ensuring your retirement plan will succeed in volatile markets

The last five years have been particularly disappointing for investors due to below average market returns. As such, many savers are becoming increasingly concerned about not having enough capital to sustain their lifestyles when they retire. This is a valid concern as most retirement plans are held together using capital growth assumptions which are notoriously volatile and proving to be unrealistic. Marriott endeavours to bring more certainty to retirement planning with their income focused investment style. Unlike traditional retirement plans, Marriott’s projections are based on future income production rather than a future capital value. As income is a more certain element of return, M

Why professionals need wealth managers

Professionals such as doctors, lawyers and accountants are generally high salary earners, but have often not been great investors, nor have they planned well for their retirement. This is for a number of reasons. First, while professionals may save, they tend to also have an expensive lifestyle, thus eating into possibly higher savings. Second, professionals are extremely busy by nature, as their income is commensurate with the hours they work. As such, they often don’t have the time or inclination to investigate the investment universe properly and thus invest almost exclusively in property and retirement products. Finally, professionals generally earn well during their working life but, un

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