The pundits have been out in force this week- probably because it’s just before the magical end to the financial year tonight.

Like so many with a crystal ball, they are not seeing good things.

According to former Reserve Bank member John Edwards, there could be eight interest rate increases in the next two years.

That’s bad news for all those families who bought during the housing boom on loans that they’ll be hard pressed to pay off on less favourable terms.

Mr Edwards reckons the RBA is already considering a program of rate increases. ‘‘It seems to me that something like eight quarter percentage point tightenings over 2018 and 2019 are distinctly possible, if the RBA’s economic forecasts prove correct,’’ said Dr Edwards, who was on the bank’s board until July last year.

That won’t worry Garnet O’Neill. Jacob Saulwick in the Sydney Morning Herald reports he neither owns his apartment, nor owns a mortgage over the property.

He is increasingly typical of modern Australia, and particularly Sydney, where the number of renters is growing faster than those with an ownership stake in their property.

‘‘Unless you got into the market a few years ago, or you’re established in the market or you’ve got family support … for the average person it’s impossible to afford to live in the city,’’ said Mr O’Neill , of Zetland.

The census released its findings this week, and spotlights the growing proportion of people for whom renting is their lifetime relationship with the property market.

The Herald reports 26.9 per cent of Australians rented 25 years ago, and 41.1 per cent owned outright. In 2016, 30 per cent of Australians rented, just short of the 31 per cent owned outright, the lowest home ownership figure in 70 years.

In Sydney, renters make up more than 34 per cent of households.

The Herald reports the census also demonstrates the financial strain on many renters in Sydney. In a city where the median rent is $440 a week, more than 14 per cent of renters paid more than 30 per cent of their household income on rent.

In contrast, only 8.4 per cent of those paying off a mortgage spent more than 30 per cent of their income on mortgage repayments.

The Stock Picker of the Year has revealed his secrets.

Simon Coggins, a client adviser at Ord Minnett in Melbourne, appears in the Sunday Herald Sun and other News Corp Sunday papers, and has had more successful picks than any other broker over the past 12 months.

His starting point on stock picking is research . “I try and look at the top 100 companies and real businesses, with good management teams, and certainly upside potential. It’s what they have in the pipeline, the potential that they have to realise down the track,” he says.

“It’s companies you understand and businesses you understand — they’re not something fictitious — you actually understand how they work and run and you can see how they’ll do well.”

Among his best picks over the past 12 months were: plasma company CSL, with good prospects in China; AGL, because energy prices looked as if they were going to rise; and logistics company Qube Holdings, which Coggins says has a lot of upside with its expansion in Moorebank in Sydney.

I know. I didn’t invest in them either.

The Australian’s Robert Gottliebsen revealed one of most bizarre anachranisms of the super changes coming into effect tomorrow.

“It seems incredible but the government is providing a carrot for people to stop working once they reach their 60s or late 50s. And then when they reach 65 the government will provide an incentive to encourage them to rejoin the work force.

This is, of course, absolutely bizarre and not what the politicians had in mind.

I emphasise that the incentives are not big enough to cause an enormous rush of people aged between 60 and 65 to leave the workforce and rejoin when they reach 65. But I know a number of people with large superannuation balances in their 60s who are now planning to do just that — leave the workforce and return once they reach 65.”

The Mamamia website ran into trouble this week after publishing what one financial site described as : “POSSIBLY THE MOST INSANE FINANCIAL ADVICE COLUMN EVER”.

That’s a big call.

The headline was: ‘Simone was $187,000 in debt. Within two years, she had paid it off.’ 

It referred to Simone Milasas’ book Getting Out of Debt Joyfully.

“One of the first important money tools I would like to give you is putting away 10 percent of everything you earn, 10 per cent of every single dollar, euro, pound, or whatever currency you create. You are not setting it aside to pay bills with. You are not saving it for a rainy day. It is not for when you run out of money. It is not to pay a big bill that is upcoming. It is not to help a friend out. It is not for buying Christmas presents. It is for none of those things!”

So far, so good. Then, things start to go off the rails…

“When you pay the bills first, the universe says, “Oh, okay. This person wishes to honour their bills. Let’s give them some more bills.” If you honour yourself by setting aside 10 per cent first, the universe says, “Oh, they are willing to honour themselves. They are willing to have more,” and it responds to that. It gives you more.

Start it today. The thing is, this is not logical or linear. You can do the maths around it, but this is not computable. Energetically, the universe starts to contribute to you as well and you start to have money show up in the most random places.”

None of this makes sense. Nor does the next piece of advice.

“How different would you feel about your life if you saw a big wad of cash every time you opened your wallet or purse instead of a lot of blank space and some scrunched up receipts? What if you enjoyed having money in there? Carry around the amount of cash that you think a wealthy person would carry.

Some people balk at the idea, thinking, “What if I get mugged, or lose my wallet or purse?” I had a young friend who carried about 1800USD on her at all times and lost her purse. It wasn’t very nice for her at the time, but after that, she was much more willing to be aware of her money!”

Then things do start going off the rails…

“I have purchased lots of gold and silver with my 10 per cent account and it’s fun for me. I have a safe in my house where I keep a lot of my gold and silver.

Things like sterling silver flatware are great liquid assets because they are aesthetically beautiful items you can actually use which will contribute to creating a feeling of wealth and luxury in your life. Isn’t it much nicer to drink champagne out of beautiful crystal, or a sterling silver goblet rather than plain glass or plastic? I know it is for me!”

Enjoy the weekend!

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