This is default featured slide 1 title

Go to Blogger edit html and find these sentences.Now replace these sentences with your own descriptions.

This is default featured slide 2 title

Go to Blogger edit html and find these sentences.Now replace these sentences with your own descriptions.

This is default featured slide 3 title

Go to Blogger edit html and find these sentences.Now replace these sentences with your own descriptions.

This is default featured slide 4 title

Go to Blogger edit html and find these sentences.Now replace these sentences with your own descriptions.

This is default featured slide 5 title

Go to Blogger edit html and find these sentences.Now replace these sentences with your own descriptions.


Belkin Petals Standing Cover for Kindle Fire HD 7", Ruby (will only fit Kindle Fire HD 7")

  • Certified "Made for Kindle" Accessory for Kindle Fire HD 7" (will not fit Kindle Fire or Kindle Fire HD 8.9")
  • Hidden AutoWake Magnets wake up your Kindle Fire HD 7" when you open the cover
  • The adjustable stand moves to give you the most comfortable viewing experience
  • Get full protection without getting in the way of your screen, just snap your Kindle Fire HD 7" into the Protective Corners, and watch as they quietly fade into the background
  • Ships in Certified Frustration-Free Packaging

List Price: $39.99
Special Offer: check this out!

Related Products

Product Description
Simply adjust the stand to your personal preference and sit back to read, watch movies and video, or any of your other favorite content in comfort. When youre finished, the cover folds closed to protect the screen with a soft inner lining thats smooth against your device. The slim, lightweight design slips easily into any bag without adding bulk.

Kindle Fire HD 7 Cases for Kids - Squidoo : Welcome to Squidoo Looking for a protective kid case for your Kindle Fire HD 7' tablet? This collection includes Kindle fire HD 7 inch cases and covers that will appeal to kids and ... kindle fire hd - Best Buy Shop for kindle fire hd at Best Buy. Find low everyday prices and buy online for delivery or in-store pick-up. Belkin Petals Standing Cover for Kindle Fire HD 7 ... Protect your Kindle Fire HD 7-inch with the stylish Belkin Petals Cover with Stand. Watch video, read, or work on the Kindle Fire HD 7-inch comfortably with the ... Kindle Fire HD Cover: Kindle Store Marware Axis Genuine Leather Rotating, Standing Case for Kindle Fire HD 7", Green (will only fit Kindle Fire HD 7") by Marware (Accessory - Sept. 14, 2012) Save 20% on a cover or sleeve when you buy a Kindle Fire HD Terms and Conditions. Add a Kindle Fire HD to your Shopping Basket. Add any cover or sleeve that is compatible with Kindle Fire HD to your Shopping Basket (excludes ... , ... KindleAndroid Kindle ... Fundas y estuches para eReader: estuches para eReader, fundas para ... Encuentre en lnea las fundas y estuches para ereader que busca en Best Buy. Networking, iPhone, iPad, Samsung and Kindle Accessories Belkin ... We make people-inspired products and solutions. From wireless home networking and entertainment, to mobile accessories, energy management, and an extensive range of ... Belkin Kindle Fire HD eBay Find great deals on eBay for Belkin Kindle Fire HD in Tablet Cases, Covers, and Keyboard Folios. Shop with confidence. Kindle Fire HD: Tablet Cases, Covers & Sleeves - Best Buy Kindle Fire HD: Tablet Cases, Covers & Sleeves. Read customer reviews, compare prices and buy online at Best Buy.


RP Data: Sydney property market in rude health

Weekly report from RP Data.

Auction clearance rates up to boom time levels of 80.3% in Sydney. Melbourne strong at 71.6%. The two major capitals make up the overwhelming majority of auctions in Australia.

Stock on the market has fallen across Australia. Why? More investors buying who don't have existing properties to sell. 

Across the capital cities, clearance rates continue to improve.

Houses in Canberra are selling fast, but I remain unconvinced that Canberra is a superior long-term bet.

The workforce may be reduced and there are great swathes of land which may be released if planning restrictions are ever eased. And indeed the Government announced yesterday that they will release 4,800 residential plots in 2013/14, which is a red flag for dwelling prices staying strong.

Better opportunities elsewhere in my opinion.

The fastest selling property types are Sydney apartments (34 days) and now Sydney houses (35 days).

I'd be surprised if we weren't discussing price gains in Sydney apartments by election time.

Source: RP Data


ASX 200 - largest two day gain since December 2011

XJO up 1.68% today following yesterday's big gains of 1.63% - two of the largest gains in 2013 back-to-back.

If there's anything to learn from this it's that chartists often have as little clue as anyone else what often-irrational share markets will do next, however cleverly they try to word their predictions.

Source: ASX


Billabong sunk

Takeover talks fail and Billabong looks instead to debt financing after coming out of its trading halt today. The BBG share price lost another 50% of its value during the trade. 

The Billabong share price has now fallen from above $14.00 in 2008 to just 23 cents.

The XJO ground out small gains of 0.25% after the interest rate announcement.

Source: ASX


So, Australia's all important GDP growth will be reported tomorrow.

It's an absolute crapshoot trying to predict GDP given that it combines transactions across household consumption, dwelling investment, business investment...and so on...but, hey, we're looking for 0.8% q/q to give us 2.7% y/y growth.

Not great, but not too bad either. 

Let's see tomorrow!


RP Data: Property Market Indicators

Fastest selling property types are units in Sydney at only 33 days, followed by houses in Sydney at 35 days. Houses in Canberra and Melbourne are also selling fairly quickly:

Auction clearance rates remain very strong in Sydney, but perhaps will now ease a little as the winter months fully set in:

Mortgage index? Hard to say, but may also be slowing up a little - it will be interesting to follow the ABS figures in coming months for further evidence:

Source: RP Data



Truly awful looking chart.

Source: kitco


Belkin Genuine Leather Standing Case for Kindle Fire HD 7", Indigo (will only fit Kindle Fire HD 7")

  • Certified "Made for Kindle" Accessory for Kindle Fire HD 7" (will not fit Kindle Fire or Kindle Fire HD 8.9")
  • The genuine leather construction combines understated elegance with structured durability for luxurious protection you can feel
  • Hidden AutoWake Magnets wake up your Kindle Fire HD 7" when you open the cover
  • The adjustable stand moves to give you the most comfortable viewing experience
  • Ships in Certified Frustration-Free Packaging

List Price: $39.99
Special Offer: check this out!

Related Products

Product Description
Simply adjust the stand to your personal preference and sit back to read, watch movies and video, or any of your other favorite content in comfort. When youre finished, the cover folds closed to protect the screen with a soft inner lining thats smooth against your device. The slim, lightweight design slips easily into any bag without adding bulk.

Kindle accessories: Kindle covers, Kindle cases, Kindle light at ... Shop Kindle accessories including Kindle covers, Kindle cases, Kindle light, Kindle charger and everything else you need for your Kindle. Recommended Kindle Fire HD 8.9" Accessories Find, shop for and buy Accessories at ... Unsure which Kindle Accessories and Kindle Books they'd like? Gift a Kindle Gift Card and let them choose what ... Kindle Fire Computers Laptop and Tablet Accessories - Kindle The Fire: An Acts 29 Message is the first book in Jodi's Boot Camp Bible Study Series. The focus of this particular Bible Study/Devotional is 28 Days of ... Child proof Kindle Fire Cases - Squidoo : Welcome to Squidoo Hard plastic case for Kindle Fire - Children. Green Yellow Hybrid Armor Kickstand Hard Soft Cover Heavy duty hybrid Kindle Fire case for Kids with 2 layers of protection. Belkin Classic Case for Kindle Fire HD 7", Blacktop ... Protect your Kindle Fire HD 7-inch with the Belkin Classic Cover. This stylish case features stretchable corners to provide a snug fit for the Kindle Fire HD 7-inch ... Kindle Fire Covers: Kindle Store Punchcase Ace Zip Round Standing Case for Kindle Fire 'Camouflage' Green (will only fit Kindle Fire) Belkin Bluetooth Keyboard Folio Case for Kindle Fire HD 8.9" The Belkin YourType Keyboard Case for Kindle Fire HD 8.9-inch offers Kindle users a versatile and comfortable alternative to touchscreen typing. This stylish case ... kindle fire 8.9 hd case eBay - Electronics, Cars, Fashion ... Find great deals on eBay for kindle fire 8.9 hd case and kindle fire 8.9 hd swivel case. Shop with confidence. kindle hd fire case eBay - Electronics, Cars, Fashion ... Find great deals on eBay for kindle hd fire case and kindle hd fire 7 case. Shop with confidence. Kindle Fire Hd from Amazon Kindle Fire HD - Tablet - 16 GB - 7" IPS ( 1280 x 800 ) - front camera - Bluetooth, Wi-Fi - black


Property Update: how much will you earn in your lifetime?

Read me on Property Update today here.

Don't forget to subscribe for the newsletter while you're there - it now has more than 60,000 readers.

And for good measure you can read me twice on Property Update today - in this article here I discuss some of the poor property investment advice that has been dished out over the years by yield-focussed commentators.


Infinity Reference 860w 8-Inch 1,000-Watt High-Performance Subwoofer (Single Voice Coil)

  • 8-inch single voice coil subwoofer with 1000 Watts peak power handling
  • High-efficiency polypropylene woofer cone with large-roll rubber surrounds ensure efficient, clean bass
  • Vented polepieces provides additional cooling to increase power handling
  • Modest mounting depth allows for use in most ported, sealed and bandpass sub enclosures
  • One-year warranty

List Price: $99.95
Special Offer: check this out!

Related Products
Infinity's 860w 8-inch Single Voice Coil Subwoofer makes the perfect upgrade to your factory system or where space is an issue.

The Infinity Reference Series Infinity's Reference Series has been engineered to deliver best-in-class performance for those looking to replace or upgrade their factory speakers. Features like Infinity's Plus One (patent pending) woofer cones and edge-driven-dome tweeters have helped position Infinity Reference as the number-one line of automotive loudspeakers for the past six years straight.

The perfect upgrade to your factory system or where space is an issue.

Infinity 860w Features

Large-roll rubber surrounds
This material provides optimum cone-edge suspension and absorbs distortions that may travel up the cone edge, ensuring clean, tight bass.

Vented pole pieces
Provides additional cooling of the motor structure is provided. The subwoofer's thermal capabilities are augmented, thus increasing power handling.

High-efficiency polypropylene woofer cones
This lightweight and popular material is used to ensure maximum woofer efficiency. The benefit is high output with modest amplifier power.

Progressive Spider
Progressive spider construction better controls speaker excursion. Translation? Better sound with less distortion.

Mounting Versatility
The subwoofer's mounting depth allows for use in most sub enclosures--ported, sealed and bandpass.

Infinity 860w Specifications Power Handling, RMS: 250 Watts Power Handling, Peak: 1000 Watts Sensitivity: 91dB Frequency Response: 30Hz - 400Hz Impedance: 4 Ohms Mounting Depth: 5-3/16 inches(131 mm) Infinity Reference 1260w 12-Inch 1200-watt High ... Infinity's 1260W 12-inch Single Voice Coil Subwoofer with dual stack magnet and hi-roll rubber surround is a great choice for any sub enclosure. The Infinity ... Infinity Reference 860w 8-Inch 1,000-Watt High ... Infinity's 860w 8-inch Single Voice Coil Subwoofer makes the perfect upgrade to your factory system or where space is an issue. The Infinity Reference Series Infinity ... Subwoofer - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia A subwoofer (or "sub") is a woofer, or a complete loudspeaker, which is dedicated to the reproduction of low-pitched audio frequencies known as bass. The typical ... INFINITY 12 INCH SUBWOOFERS This Infinity Reference 1260w 12-Inch 1200-watt High-Performance Subwoofer (Single Voice Coil) give you a powerful bass sound, which makes for great driving music. Site Map - Pro Audio DJ Equipment, Audio Video Accessories, DJ ... By Categories; Car Audio / Video; Car Audio/Video Accessories; Car Amplifier Installation Accessories; Amplifier Wiring Kits; Car A/V Cables & Wires; Adapters ... Infinity 860W (860-W) 8" Single 4 ohm Reference Series Subwoofer Infinity Reference 860W Infinity 8" Single 4 Ohm Reference Series Subwoofer 250 Watts RMS 1000 Watts Max High-Gloss Polypropylene Woofer Large ...


The balanced product portfolio

Thinking back to when I studied Business Management as a young 20-something, it always seemed rather pointless when we as students learned about the suite of "MBA tools" which business leaders and executives apparently used to run companies effectively.

We tended to learn the tools simply as lists to be recited in examinations and then forget them as soon as the exams were over, without considering that they might actually have a use in the real world.

You've probably heard of some of them: the SWOT analysis is one good example, where a business identifies its Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats. Whether or not they refer to it as a 'SWOT', every major business which has ever succeeded has carried out this analysis - they wouldn't be applying appropriate corporate governance if they hadn't, and besides, they would likely soon be out of business. 

Some other MBA tools sound like complete gobbledigook (the ridiculous-sounding "Storming, Forming, Norming and Performing" springs to mind) while others, such as 'Porter's Five Forces' have proved to be extremely useful in the world of business over the decades.

In truth, these tools are all useful, for they would certainly have been canned years ago by the Harvards of the world if they weren't.

The Growth-Share Matrix

Commonly known as the 'BCG Matrix' after the Boston Consulting Group which designed it, the 'Growth-Share matrix' was designed to help companies allocate their resources efficiently and effectively manage products and their portfolios. It looks like this:
The theory is that a company should be able to place each of its products in one of the quadrants and thereafter decide how best to deal with it.

In the ideal world, all businesses would have products with a high market share, in a market with high growth. A good example might be Microsoft's Windows product back in the 1990s: it was a booming market which Microsoft had a large share of. Such products are called STARS and can continue to generate great profits for the business.

If further investment is needed to retain the star status, companies should provide it, for they have a star product and Microsoft continued to improve Windows with each successive product in order to maintain market dominance. That is a winning investment.

Sadly, many businesses have products which are in markets with low growth, where they also only retain a small share of the market. These products are known as DOGS - they are unlikely to be profitable and should be divested or ditched.

As is the way of the world, things are rarely this black and white.

Some products, for example retain a high market share in a low-growth industry, and these are known as CASH-COWS. Often reflected by products in mature industries, cash-cows can generate more cash than they take to maintain so companies should look to own plenty of cash-cows. Conventional wisdom says that  these products should continue to be milked while applying as little investment as possible, although not at the expense of new brands.

But what if you have a product which sits in a booming industry of which you only have a small market share? This is known as a PROBLEM CHILD...or sometimes, by those who don't really like business lingo,  such products are know as "question marks". These are products for which are growing rapidly and thus can consume cash, but due to having low market shares they don't generate much cash. 

A problem child could gain market share and become a star, and eventually a cash cow when the market matures and growth slows. But if a problem child fails to become a market leader then it could degenerate into a dog. A problem child should therefore be analysed carefully in order to determine whether they are worthy of the investment necessary in order to grow market share.

Take the example of a small start-up business in China which supplies automotive parts. It is placed in a booming industry but only has a small market share. It probably needs to invest in order to gain market share.

The diversified portfolio

Just like an individual investor, the balanced company with the diversified portfolio can capitalise on its resources. Ideally the company should have:

-stars, the high growth of which represent the future of the business
-cash-cows, to supply the funds for future investment and to keep the business alive
-problem children or question marks - to be invested in to be converted into tomorrow's stars

Dogs, of course, should be divested.

Not dissimilarly, the individual investor should ultimately aim to have cash flow investments to pay for living expenses and to fund new investments, and capital growth investments to create long-term wealth.

Applying this to investment

The BCG Matrix was created in order to help businesses assess products and their place in the market, but investors would do well to be aware of .the principles of market growth and market share. After all, investors own shares in companies and therefore need to understand their future prospects.

To a lesser extent investors can also apply the principles to their own portfolios. In an ideal world, we'd all own star investments which continue to outperform for decades to come.

Other investments, even if they are lacking in growth potential we may elect to hold if they generate a continuing strong cash flow. Examples might include fixed income investments or commercial properties.

A problem child, might be represented by a company which itself needs to undertake investment, restructuring or perhaps a transition to production in order to become a future star. Alternatively, you might own a run-down property which could, through investment, be turned into a desirable, multi-dwelling, outperforming investment.

What if you own shares in a dog? Divest it. Too many investors observe a falling share price and see an opportunity, believing it could 'bounce back'. But a genuine dog investment - a company with low market share and low growth - it is commonly wise to dispose of. A company which cannot generate profits will ultimately be worth $nil, or, in the best case scenario, the net realisable value of its assets.

In the world of real estate, it is popular to say that the superior investment strategy is to "never, ever sell". It's true that due to the material transaction costs involved in acquiring and disposing of property, a well-located property is best held indefinitely.

But if you own a genuine dog, the law of opportunity cost requires that it is disposed of so that funds can be more appropriately allocated elsewhere.

Some property investors like to say "property prices can never crash to zero". Well, I'm afraid that in some circumstances they absolutely can. Ultimately, real estate is only worth what another person is prepared to pay for it, so you need to own investments in locations in the greatest demand. Sometimes it makes sense to dispose a dog investment and re-invest in a superior location.


Sydney still scorching - 78% clearance rate (again)

Lest there was any doubt about the hot Sydney property market continuing into the chilly winter months...

Another near-record 78% clearance rate today to follow last weekend's 78%, which means that price gains might be expected to continue well into the coming months.

A bit of a dilemma perhaps emerging for the RBA, for an interest rate cut is probably needed to stimulate construction, yet this risks sending property markets such as Sydney into overdrive. 

It may be a sacrifice they have to make, but they must also be wary given that Sydney prices are already well above previous record highs.


On the subject of Sydney, an amazing 16-41 win for the British Lions. 

I have to admit that no matter how long I live in Australia, and despite being an Aussie citizen, I'll always support the Brits - can't change that!

Ashes cricket starts on Wednesday and it is roasting hot over here near London. Can't wait...


What will happen to stocks in 2014?

The 2013 financial year was one of ups and downs - but mainly ups - for the Australian stock market and therefore most super funds, closing up more than 17%.

Will next year demonstrate similar results? 

Well, stock markets are unpredictable beasts, so, unlike many commentators, I'm not going to pretend that I have any better idea than the next bloke. 

But if we work on the (flawed) assumption that fundamentals actually determine valuations, you'd have to say that prices aren't particularly attractive right now. 

The major banks have PE ratios is the low-to-mid teens with Commonwealth Bank hovering around 15. 

Some (Wesfarmers, Telstra, QBE) are priced rather more optimistically in the 15-20 range, while others (Rio Tinto) have receded.

With interest rates at record lows and yield-seeking investors pumping up prices, there may well be some upside potential.

Much will hang on the ability or otherwise of the Aussie economy to handle the unwinding of the mining construction boom without unemployment spiking and economic growth receding.

As ever in the stock markets, the trend is your friend and momentum is everything.

Remember that the XJO feel to around 3,500 as the global financial crisis crucified market confidence, yet we didn't actually experience a recession in this country. 

So, if things don't go as planned there is also plenty of potential downside given that the ASX 200 closed out 2013 at a significantly higher level at 4,802.

Obviously if you are a stock market investor, you need an investment plan that suits your own needs. 

My strategy has been very boring, simply using an averaging plan - I hold index funds in the UK and buy the industrials-focussed, low-cost LICs and banks in Australia. 

If the XJO fell to levels starting with a '3' I would be looking to start buying more heavily.

Source: ASX


The iron ore price rebound

Anyone who's worked in the resources sector will know that commodity price forecasts should generally be taken with a pinch of salt, and the cleverly worded day-to-day commentary (guesswork) an even larger pinch of salt. 

But it is interesting to note the tremendous turn-around in fortunes for the volatile iron ore spot price, particularly as prices were supposedly heading lower before a huge rebound which is approaching a 50% appreciation in price.

Today the spot hit US$131.90/tonne, a vast improvement on  the dismal depths seen in the third quarter of 2012 when the spot price fell below US$90/tonne.

Combine this tremendous rebound with an Aussie dollar correction from above 106 US cents to 91.7 cents and this equates to a A$ price of around $144/tonne.


Great news for the Aussie economy: what a lot can change in less than 12 months, eh?. 

Of course, it is something of a risky business being so highly leveraged against one manic-depressive commodity price as well as a similarly volatile currency, but naturally, it's all 'happy days' and sweetness and light when things are working out in your favour. 

Let's hope that things stay this way...


While on the subject of volatility in day-to-day prices, it's also interesting to note that RP Data has Sydney dwelling prices up by more than 4% in fewer than 6 weeks.

Hmm. So much for those "falling house prices" and "more properties being sold into a falling market" being reported in May (in the face of 80% auction clearance rates and 85%+ in the inner western suburbs).

Nationally RP Data has prices up by more than 1% in July, but much of that is really only offsetting falls reported in May. 

If inflation prints low net week (say, 0.6% for the quarter or less) then interest rates will likely be cut again in August and there now appears to be a genuine risk that Sydney's property markets will be sent into overdrive.

Sydney's real estate problems are multi-faceted and well documented: a booming population of 60,000 extra persons per annum, construction too slow, planning restrictions, NIMBYism, a disproportionate level of investor activity and appreciating land prices, to name but a few of the issues.

Sydney stands to be a likely beneficiary of the weak response to interest rate cuts elsewhere - in cities such as Adelaide, prices have stalled over the past half decade despite the recommendations to buy property there from yield-seeking property commentators, while Brisbane, Canberra and most regional markets have not been much cop either, and show few signs of really picking up to date. 

It very much looks like a long, slow, bleeding decline for many parts of the country - dropping interest rates fired up activity once through 2009-2010, but it doesn't look as though there will be much response a second time.

Futures markets are already pricing an August interest rate cut to 2.50% as more likely than not (a 64% chance of a cut on August 6), and indeed, they are all but pricing in two further cuts by March 2014.

It's overwhelmingly investors who are pumping up the Sydney property market, with prices breaking to record new heights.

Nationally, however, prices still remain 2% below their previous 2010 peak and don't seem inclined to be heading a whole lot higher at this juncture.

Dwelling prices from the RBA chart pack (a bit of a time-lag in the data here: it will be updated again soon):

Dwelling Prices graph

And copied below is the futures implied yield curve, showing the cash rate as likely to be headed towards 2.25% by March next year. 

Record low levels as the Reserve attempts to rebalance the economy away from mining construction and towards dwelling construction.

Interesting times...

Source: ASX


The category 3 heatwave continues in the UK.

Loving the cricket live from Lords, England making 361 in the first dig with another century from Ian Bell.

Now, Australia's turn...


BIS: Sydney property prices to grow by 19%

BIS are always an optimistic bunch, forecasting Sydney property prices to rise by 19% over the coming three years, and Newcastle growth of 18%. The cheapest sector of Sydney's market is the underperformer, while the middle market powers on to new heights. 

Despite ongoing reports of unaffordability and booming prices, 90% of properties in the inner west sold at auction this weekend, and 89% for City and East.

Reports SMH:

"As a new financial year dawns, independent experts now agree that Sydney's home values are growing.
RP Data released its June figures on Monday showing a 2.7 per cent rise in dwelling values over the month. In May, despite Australian Property Monitors saying strong auction clearance rates indicated price growth, RP Data said values had dropped 1 per cent.
RP Data national research director Tim Lawless said his company's index movements closely mirrored the Westpac-Melbourne Institute survey of consumer sentiment which had showed a similar trend over the past three months: down in April and May followed by a rise in June.
Mr Lawless said improved equity market conditions in 2013 had led to an increase in dwelling values in Sydney’s prestige suburbs.
‘‘Sydney’s most expensive suburbs have seen dwelling values rise by 4.8 per cent over the past six months compared with a 3.2 per cent rise in values at the most affordable end of the market and a 4.6 per cent gain across the broad middle-priced segment of the Sydney market.”
Meanwhile, BIS Shrapnel said on Monday that Sydney's median house price of $670,000 in June reflected a 4 per cent increase over the past financial year.
"The Sydney residential market now appears to be gaining some momentum after being weak for the best part of the last decade," BIS senior manager Angie Zigomanis said.
"We are forecasting total price growth in Sydney over the three years to June 2016 to be 19 per cent, or a moderate 5.9 per cent per annum."
Mr Zigomanis said the strength of the Sydney market was due to a sustained period of underbuilding, which had led to low vacancy rates and strong rental growth since 2007. Large numbers of investors were flooding the market. Low interest rates were also helping.
However, BIS noted that first home buyer numbers had dropped in 2013 because government incentives last year had pulled demand forward. It expects normal levels of first-home buying by next year.
BIS Shrapnel is also enthusiastic about Sydney's neighbours with 18 per cent growth expected over the three years in Newcastle and 17 per cent for Wollongong.
It's less optimistic about Melbourne because of an oversupply of apartments and weakness in the local economy. "Median house price growth in Melbourne is forecast to be minimal, totalling 5 per cent over the 2013 to 2016 forecast period," Mr Zigomanis said.
"And accounting for inflation, prices are actually forecast to fall by 4 per cent in real terms."
But BIS said things were looking up in Brisbane. "By the end of 2015-16, rising interest rates will begin to impact on prices, but only after a forecast total rise of 17 per cent in the median house price over the three years to 2016, representing an average rise of 5.2 per cent per annum," Mr Zigomanis said.
About 15 per cent growth is forecast for the three years in Perth and 10 per cent in Darwin. Canberra can expect a total rise of 3 per cent (a decline of 5 per cent in real terms); Hobart a rise of 4 per cent (a drop of 5 per cent in real terms) and Adelaide 6 per cent growth (or a 3 per cent decline in real terms)."


"Land appreciates and buildings depreciate" - true or false?

The cost of bad advice

No surprises that with the property market on the upturn, the usual parties are back talking up investing in  property in remote locations. Yesterday, SMH reported that Cairns might be about to "awaken from its coma". More than a dozen years ago now some 'positive cash flow commentators' were tipping buying off-the-plan in Cairns as a smart investment, ostensibly for the strong depreciation benefits and high yields (I think they were the  only reasons given; I certainly can't think of any others).


There may have been marginal capital growth in apartments over the years, but it's not the growth periods in these low-demand or speculative regions that worries me. It's when the downturns hit, and according to SMH dwelling prices fell by 30% or more in Cairns through the global  financial crisis (GFC) wiping out the previous gains. According to SQM Research asking prices have continued to fall over the past 4 years. Parts of the Gold Coast suffered a similar fate through the GFC.

The opportunity cost of taking heed of this bad advice had you taken it would have been been nothing short of immense. In that time you could simply have invested in a few quality, well-located properties in Melbourne or Perth (or pretty much any capital city) and secured your financial future.

Dwelling Prices graph

Undeterred, positive cash-flow investors then went on to promote serviced apartments in hotel complexes for strong rents (each to their own, but I'd file that under 'B' for 'Bad Advice' as well) or investing in all manner of tourism properties (refer 'GFC' above) and other unusual locations (basically "any property" which produced a positive cashflow) located hours away from job centres and where most people prefer to live and to invest.

While many regional properties have been underpeforming investments for years now, today the hot sectors of the property market include certain parts of Perth, Sydney's inner west and Sydney's north shore. As noted, Melbourne has already experienced a phenomenal price boom from 2007. Brisbane has been in the doldrums for some time; but its time will surely come again.

As for Darwin, well prices keep on rocketing, and they may continue to do so. It's a crazy market up here in the Top End, with ultra-high prices these days for such a small city  - generally, I don't like crazy markets, but good luck to you if it's your thing. A key factor in determining the return on any investment is the entry price, so in my opinion better value now lies elsewhere.

Land appreciates

It's often said that land appreciates while buildings depreciate and require maintenance, and this is by and large true, so it is vital to invest where there is a massive and growing demand for a limited supply of land. It's pretty simple really, because every demographic statistic tells us that the capital cities are where these trends are playing out.

In this recent blog post I noted how in Port Augusta, by way of an example, vacant land prices clocked in at only a few thousand dollars as recently as 2004. To all intents and purposes, from an economic perspective, the land had a value of approximately $nil - there were plenty of lots potentially available for release and there hasn't been much demand from the small population.

So how, then, have median house prices increased all the way up to $175,000? Because it costs more than that to construct and then sell a house for a worthwhile profit these days.

As new houses come on to the market in regional towns, the median price tends to be increased. Unfortunately new builds often don't produce great capital growth as the initial buyer tends to suck up much of the developer's costs and profit margins. And this dynamic doesn't do much for the price of existing dwellings either, which become less popular as compared to the shiny new builds.

But hasn't regional property done OK?

Property investment was 'easy' in the 1970s and 1980s for those who were actually born and had access to capital, for inflation was raging and the value of debt was quickly inflated away. Plenty of regional properties did go up in price a fair amount between 1990 and 2007 too, but then, so did nearly all property prices in Australia, because interest rates fell dramatically and we went on an almighty borrowing binge.

However, long-term regional growth rates have still been relatively poor as you can see on the websites of data providers, which is reflected in low median prices today, and regional price growth has stalled for some years now as the first chart above clearly shows.

The borrowing boom cannot and almost certainly will not be repeated, and certainly not in remote, owner-occupier regions where few elect to invest. House prices cannot continue to be inflated by ever-greater leverage and household debt. Material price growth in the future must surely only be sourced from real wages growth and investor activity, which largely occurs in some key sectors of our capital cities.

Someone will always be making money from real estate, but if you're an investor you'll have to be smarter than before, and do two things very well if you are to succeed:

(i) invest counter-cyclically; and 
(ii) follow demographic trends

The average household persons per dwelling has plummeted over the past century, so medium-density dwellings such as 2 bedroom properties may be a good bet, but only in quality locations in cities where the population is booming and where large plots of land cannot be released.

In my opinion, for most regional towns the best case scenario over the next decade is that property prices increase in line with inflation as construction costs increase. However, inflation is likely to remain relatively low so capital returns will also be stunted. The worst case is that prices slide backwards for a decade.

Construction costs

Graph 8: Construction Costs

The RBA recently released this revealing chart, which shows that even in our major capital cities, in the fringe suburbs where demand is low, land is relatively cheap. 

There isn't much demand for these plots from homebuyers or investors so greenfield sites in Brisbane and Perth are cheap. Melbourne's greenfield sites spiked in price during the previous first homebuyers' boost and then receded. Sydney's urban sprawl is constrained by the Pacific Ocean and National Parks on all sides, so greenfield sites as a general rule cost significantly more, especially with the city's notorious NIMBYism.

The chart demonstrates that where demand is low, dwelling price movements are predominantly related to construction costs, government levies, and service and finance. Price growth in low-demand locations consists less of the price of land, which remains a small component. Meanwhile in the prime city suburbs even barely inhabitable hovels can fetch hundreds of thousands and sometimes even millions of dollars due to the great demand for the land in these plots.

While prices could increase steadily in low-demand areas as construction becomes more expensive, I believe this to be a risky approach to investment and one which introduces a significant potential for capital loss.


It's all too easy to generalise, so let's look at an example: the NSW south coast, which has been tipped by the cash-flow investors over the last few years. Unfortunately, no sooner did the region become nominated as a hotspot in 2010 than BlueScope Steel announced a major round of redundancies...with more following later. This is a salient risk of investing in regions dominated by few industries.

In the last decade, whereas a counter-cyclical capital city investor would have been looking to invest in a property which doubled (or more) in value in, say, Melbourne or Perth, prices in the Shoalhaven region appreciated by 12.5%. Even in Sydney which would have been absolutely the last city you'd have picked on a counter-cyclical basis after its preceding boom to Q1, 2004, you might easily have achieved 40% capital growth in a quality inner or middle ring suburb.

As I discussed in this post, an investor in Melbourne could comfortably have achieved annual capital growth of a 9-10% compounding annual return since 2000 for well over 150% growth, which blows away equivalent returns from the vast majority of regional property investments.

As ever, don't take my word for this: speak to experienced, independent Buyers Agents (not regional estate agents) about where long-term capital growth has been and will be found, and they will answer this riddle for you. In theory, I suppose you could pick a regional hotspot, but as we've seen above even the positive cashflow commentators do it poorly, so your chances of long-term success in today's highly-leveraged environment are accordingly reduced.

REA: Real Estate Reports

Different data providers give slightly different results. in their chart below shows median house price growth in regional 'hotspot' Nowra, for example, of 13% since 2004 (and unit price growth of, well...essentially nothing):


The broad statistics don't quite tell the full South Coast story, for median prices in the region (sadly, because it's a beautiful part of the world) are being pumped up by extraordinarily ugly new housing estates. You might argue that there are better times ahead for the NSW South Coast. Maybe, but I remain sceptical. There may be a moderately increasing demand, but there has been much land potentially available for release, and worse, it is being released.

Meanwhile, BlueScope have announced further redundancies in 2013 which will hurt the region's prospects. Existing dwellings will therefore likely show relatively weak long-term growth. While capital cities have been undergoing an investor-led recovery over the past 12 months and recording non-trivial capital growth, median prices in the Shoalhaven region have slipped backwards into a downtrend.

REA Real Estate Reports

So why do the experts tip regional property. A few reasons:

(i) higher initial rental yields: more than 7% on the South Coast; or
(ii) kickbacks from developers in the regional towns they tip; or
(iii) they own investment property in the regions they recommend.

You might say that I'm also ramping regions where I invest around London and Sydney. Maybe, but the key difference is that the population of London is more than 8 million and that of Sydney is more than 4.6 million, so I don't think my blog will have much impact. This is not necessarily the case in some small regional towns where it's possible to undertake a 'pump and dump'.

Property investment is a long-term game, so keep it simple and invest in suburbs where the demand is continuous and growing. You'll do much better over the long haul.


ABS: Household incomes recovering after global financial crisis

Today's release from the ABS revealed some interesting trends on household income growth.

"Income in low and middle income households grew by over four per cent between 2009-10 and 2011-12, according to a report released today by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).

"Growth in household income stalled after the global financial crisis," said Stephanie Cornes, Director of Household Economic Resource Surveys at the ABS, "but figures from 2011-12 released today show that household incomes are recovering."

"Low income households have seen an increase of five per cent from 2009-10, and middle income households have seen an increase of four per cent. High income households have been fairly stable, with no significant growth."

"Overall, the share of total household income received by low and middle income households has grown since 2007-08, while the share received by high income households has fallen. These results are reflected in more equal incomes across Australian households since 2007-08," Ms Cornes said."

The ABS found that real equivalised disposable income increased by 49% between 1994/5 and 2011/12, despite a break in the trend during the global financial crisis.



Source: ABS

Notably, disposable income was very high in some states, but low in South Australia and Tasmania.


Stocks flying - correction due

Stocks up more than 1% today.

It's shaping up like a game of "chicken" long before the correction? There probably is one coming in the next month or two; it's likely being triggered by a nuance from the US.

I shed a bit of my exposure to banks today - they are starting to look risky again at these levels.

Source: ASX


Sydney auction clearance rate 77%

Strong start to the winter season then.


Ahh, at Singapore Changi Airport mmm...


Gold down 40%...

Hitting as low as $1,183/oz today.

Watch out for a bull trap in coming weeks as the gold spot continues its diabolical performance...

Source: kitco


The Sweet Spot: How Australia Made Its Own Luck - And Could Now Throw It All Away

List Price:
Special Offer: check this out!

Related Products

Product Description
Winner of the 2012 Ashurst Business Literature Prize

This book will change the way you think about your country

Australians now officially have the best living conditions in the world. Our country is both fair and free and the only developed nation to have avoided a recession in the past twenty years. So how did it happen and why dont we care?

In The Sweet Spot Peter Hartcher takes readers on a vastly entertaining and thought-provoking tour through Australian politics and history. He shows how a convict colony could have become a banana republic but didnt, how Australia came through the global financial crisis it wasnt just the mining boom and how we could now throw our success away if we dont recognise our strengths and demand true leadership of our politicians.

Hartcher argues that Australias prosperity was not built on dumb luck. In a time when the authoritarian success story of China is strong, Australia offers a better model: a democratic success story. Is it perfect? Of course not. But on some of the most important and apparently intractable problems of the modern world, Australia, believe it or not, is as good as it gets. And the beaches arent bad either.

Airplane Games .org - Fly Your Plane Games Luftrauser Fight against the enemy forces and survive for as long as possible. Green Bomber Complete all of mission objectives and destroy civilian buildings as you ... Technology - New Scientist Find news and information on the latest new technology. Read about new inventions and advances in computer software and information technology Sweet Collective - Lincoln Square - Chicago, IL (773) 293-0888 "I love Sweet Collective! This place makes excellent chocolates and snacks. I came in here earlier this year because I wanted to just buy ... Broadway Radio ( Broadway's leading streaming web radio station feature show tunes from 1990 to today. SweetSpot Blog - ESPN MLB news, commentary, scores, stats, standings, audio and video highlights from ESPN. Livraison gratuite,Chaussures Requin tn,TN Requins, Chaussures ... Livraison gratuite,Chaussures Requin tn,TN Requins, Chaussures Nike tn Requin,chaussures requin, Peter Bodo Blog - ESPN Right about now, the typical ATP journeyman is taking a deep breath and trying to swallow as he contemplates the fact that the party is over. After a month during ... MM MIDIFILE DEMOS - BandTrax Australia MIDIfiles for MIDIphiles - MM MIDIFILE DEMOS Lost! Re-Set The Complete BandTrax WEB. You Have Been Directed To A Very Old Site Location. Please go to And ... Perfect Pie Crust Simply Recipes The big dilemma for those of us who like to cook but dont always have the time to do everything perfectly is whether to attempt to make our own pie crust or to buy ... Endzone News - Football coverage, analysis and opinion : Endzone News Eddie Lacys unexpected slide to Green Bay could have landed him in the perfect position. Heading into the 2013 NFL draft, most analysts seemed to agree that ...


Saturday Summary: articles of the week!

From Michael Yardney over at Property Update here.

Don't forget to sign the newsletter while you're there...


Baby Einstein Caterpillar and Friends Play Gym

  • Star shaped electronic toy lights and 8 classic melodies are baby motion activated or play continuously for 20+ minutes
  • Sewn in mat loops and 8 Baby Einsteing links to add more toys
  • Mat is machine washable

List Price: $59.99
Special Offer: check this out!

Related Products

Product Description
Baby Einstein Caterpillar and Friends Play Gym

Baby Einstein - Caterpillar & Friends Play Gym - Baby Einstein ... Buy Baby Einstein - Caterpillar & Friends Play Gym - This soft activity gym grows with baby and features dancing lights, classic melodies and 6 activities for baby to ... Baby Einstein Caterpillar and Friends Play Gym: Baby Let the discovery begin with Baby Einstein Caterpillar and Friends Activity Gym. This large, soft play mat features classical music, dancing lights, and six ... Baby Einstein Caterpillar & Friends Play Gym product details page The Baby Einstein Caterpillar & Friends Play Gym meets CPSC standards for baby's safety. It has dancing lights and classic melodies that will keep your baby engaged ... Baby Einstein Caterpillar and Friends Activity Gym BabiesRUs Let the discovery begin with Baby Einstein Caterpillar and Friends Activity Gym! This large, soft play mat features classical music, dancing lights, and 6 activities so Customer Reviews: Baby Einstein Caterpillar and ... 4 stars. "What you would like and probably wouldn't like" We like: - The movement-activated star that lights and sounds. - The variety of toys. - The print of the mat ... Baby Einstein - Caterpillar & Friends Play Gym Find great value on the Baby Einstein Caterpillar Play Gym at Baby Einstein Caterpillar and Friends Play Gym: Baby Let the discovery begin with Caterpillar and friends. This large, soft play mat features classical music, dancing lights, and 6 activities so baby will be engaged for ... Baby Einstein Caterpillar & Friends Play Gym - Best Price Buy Baby Einstein Caterpillar & Friends Play Gym at FREE fast shipping both ways, a 365-day return policy & the BEST 24/7 customer service! Baby Einstein 90575 Caterpillar and Friends Play Gym: Baby Let the discovery begin with Caterpillar and friends! This large, soft play mat features classical music, dancing lights, and 6 activities so baby will be engaged for ... Baby Einstein Caterpillar and Friends Playgym - baby playmats ... This Baby Einstein Caterpillar and Friends Playgym and mat features plenty of fun activities. It can be adapted as your baby develops, making it fun to play with ...


Sydney property boom

Property prices in Sydney have surged on to new all-time heights.

No surprises for guessing which sectors of the market are the hottest - reports APM:

"Sydney’s winter auction market continues to surge with another strong auction clearance rate recorded at the weekend. Despite the beginning of school holidays and the wet weather, Sydney’s weekend rate of 77.4 percent was another exceptional result from a winter market that so far shows no signing of waning.
Buyer activity in Sydney’s auction market has continued to rise since Easter with the strong results recorded over April and May now increasing over June. Since the Queen’s birthday holiday weekend Sydney’s weekend auction clearance rates have averaged 76.3 percent compared to the 74.7 percent averaged between Easter and the Queen’s birthday.
Both these results are the highest level of buyer activity in the Sydney auction market recorded at this time of the year for ten years.
Sydney’s inner west recorded another extraordinary result at the weekend with properties in that region continuing to walk out the door. The inner west clearance rate of 90 percent at an average sale price of $966,500 was not only the highest clearance rate recorded of all the suburban regions but was achieved from the highest number of listings. Sydney’s city and east suburban region also produced an exceptional 89 percent clearance rate at an average sale price of $963,764 and also from solid listing numbers."


Grandstand Football Qube Case

  • Holds a regulation sized football
  • Stand makes for Easier Placement of Ball
  • Black High ? Gloss Base ? Mirrored Back ? 2 Piece Design
  • Crystal Clear / Archival Quality / Made in U.S.A
  • Football NOT Included

List Price: $24.99
Special Offer: check this out!

Related Products

Product Description
FBGQ Features: -Crystal clear, 2 piece design.-Comes with a high gloss back base with ball cradle.-Removable for more versatile display options.-Perfect for a autographed ball.-Additionally, use a football collectors case to house all size footballs or baseball gloves, boxing gloves etc. Dimensions: -Dimensions: 4'' D.

Soccer Ball Display Case - Compare Prices, Reviews and Buy at Nextag Soccer Ball Display Case - 37 results like Perfect Cases Soccer" Display Case - BLACK / 9" X 9" X 10", BallQube Soccer Ball Holder, BallQube Basketball - Soccer Ball ... football case Drive traffic from to your website. Get $75 in free clicks! Amazon Product Ads is a highly targeted pay-per-click advertising program that puts your ... grandstand eBay - Electronics, Cars, Fashion, Collectibles ... Find great deals on eBay for grandstand and grandstand game. Shop with confidence. Ballqube Grandstand UV Protective Football Qube ... FBQUV Features: -Crystal clear, two piece design.-Perfect for a autographed ball.-With black bottom.-Comes with shields built into the plastic that prevents UV light ... football display case eBay - Electronics, Cars, Fashion ... Find great deals on eBay for football display case and full size football display case. Shop with confidence. Sports Memorabilia Display Cases Authentic Sports Memorabilia Autographed Sports Memorabilia Basketball NBA Memorabilia Baseball MLB Memorabilia Football NFL Memorabilia Hockey NHL ... BallQube - Clear Stackable Sports Memorabilia Display Cases and ... BallQube displays come in a variety of shapes and sizes to fit almost any display need you can come up with. Explore >


PetFusion Cat Scratcher Lounge, Walnut Brown

  • See video on left for additional details.
  • Both a scratcher and a lounge, reversible for twice the use; Sleek and neutral design made of eco-friendly, recycled corrugated cardboard
  • Naturally attracts cats; Curves make for easier scratching and a more comfortable place to rest and play
  • Large surface area to hold multiple or larger cats and provide generous scratching space
  • Durable construction and dense cardboard lasts longer than other scratchers
  • Featured on Animal Planet's 'My Cat From Hell'; Recommended to save your furniture

List Price: $99.99
Special Offer: check this out!

Related Products
Engineered for your cats health and happiness. Designed for your home.

Exceptional value In your home

Save your furniture. Made just for your feline loved one(s) to scratch, rest, and play on.




Long lasting. Lasts as much as 10 times longer than cheaper alternatives.


Meet up

Modern art

Healthier, happier cat. Promote healthy nails, muscles, and communication.

cat scratcher lounge eBay - Electronics, Cars, Fashion ... Find great deals on eBay for cat scratcher lounge and cat lounge. Shop with confidence. Scratchers - Free shipping at - Dog and Cat Food, Treats ... FREE shipping on orders $49+ and the BEST customer service! Shop for all SCRATCHERS at New Cat Condos Sisal Rope Scratching Post items in Wayfair store ... 673 results found: New Cat Condos Sisal Rope Scratching Post The Refined Feline 69" The Lotus Cat Tree in Espresso Kitty City 46" Mega Kit Cat Perch Go Pet ... pet lounge eBay - Electronics, Cars, Fashion, Collectibles ... Newly listed Littlest Pet Shop Fairy Tiara Princess Kitten Cat Set w/ Lounge Exclusive *RARE* PetFusion Cat Scratcher Lounge - Deluxe (Charcoal Gray): ... Tired of purchasing cat products that your feline loved ones get bored of, quickly? PetFusion's Cat Scratcher Lounge serves double duty as both a cat scratcher and ... Products Pet Fusion At PetFusion, our ultimate goal is to fuse your world with your pets. Most pet product companies are focused solely on the solution for the pet need, but we see the ... For Cats Pet Fusion Dimensions: 16 x 8.6 x 4 inches Weight: 2.25 pounds. Original Price: $59.95 Sale Price: $34.95 . Elevated design aids in healthier digestion of food ... PetFusion Cat Scratcher Lounge, Walnut Brown: Pet Supplies See video on left for additional details. Both a scratcher and a lounge, reversible for twice the use; Sleek and neutral design made of eco-friendly, recycled ... Infinity Cat Scratcher Lounge: Pet Supplies Infinity Cat Scratcher Lounge provides a place for your feline friends to scratch, nap, and play. The multiple scratching surfaces will keep your cat satisfied and ... Round Cardboard Cat Scratcher Refills Home and Garden - PetFusion Walnut Brown Cat Scratcher Lounge, Scratcher Lounge; Cat scratcher and lounger in one! Specially made for cats who enjoy scratching, playing, and lounging ...