If you’ve honed your skills with our tips and tricks on shopping, now here’s a really tangible reward:  Coles and Woolworths are starting a price war, so expect some really strong savings in the next few months.

First opportunity is bread – with Woolworths playing catch up to Coles price drops of up at 35 per cent.

Fresh bread and baked products mean Goodman Fielder’s wonder White, Helga’s, Molenberg and Lawsons as well as Tip Top at all being slashed.

The biggest losers, so to speak, are fruit breads and banana loaves. Coles dropped the price of banana bread by nine per cent to $5, and in response Woolworths slashed the price of Tip Top Raison Toast to a toasty $3.50 from $5.40.


Why it’s now or never for a 2017 pay rise

This month is the best to ask your boss for a pay rise.  

It’s going to be a tough conversation – particularly since many CEOs are being asked to take a pay cut.

But if you are going to get a pay rise at any time, it may as well be at the beginning of the new financial year.

So, let’s go for it. Here’s what you need to know – and good luck!

1. Know what you’re worth – Google your job

Using a salary guide to assess what you are currently receiving compared to your peers will help you decide if you should aim to negotiate with your employer – or consider making the switch to a new company. You may find it quite a sobering experience!

2. Understand your industry

If your work sector is doing well and your skills are in high demand, this is great when asking for a pay rise. If the market is tough, now may not be the right time to approach the boss.

3. Specialise

Are your skills something special? If not – upskill. Finding your niche in the market is your ticket to a higher pay packet.

4. Know exactly what you want 

If your boss wants to keep you, and you want to stay, make your boss’s life easy by telling him/her want you want. Have a Plan B during the negotiation. This could include asking for a bigger bonus instead of a pay rise, more flexible working hours or a restructure of your role. Many employers are more likely to grant these alternatives than paying more.

5. Be professional

It is important to keep your confidence and your cool when asking for a pay rise. You need to prove to your employer that you are worth the money. Be prepared to look at things from the boss’s perspective.

Compiled with help from Robert Half – https://www.roberthalf.com.au/are-you-getting-right-salary/how-ask-pay-rise-year

Is this the housing market’s tipping point

House price growth has, at last, slowed – though auction clearance rates are still above 70 per cent.

The latest ANZ/Property Council of Australia survey of more than 1700 property professionals from across the whole industry says the slow-down has indeed begun –  investor home lending dropped for the fifth month in a row in May, while house prices eased over the June quarter.

House price growth has fallen to 4.3 points from 20.2 points.

In NSW, where Sydney house prices dipped by 1.3 per cent in April, the ANZ PCA index of house price growth expectations sank to just 1.7 points from 29.6 in the last reading three months ago. In Victoria the index also fell to 7.1 points from 29.1.

With many owners trying to sell ahead of an expected slowdown in price growth, developers are also nervous about the future.

The Financial Review reports that multiple economists have signalled their expectations for a step down in price growth:

UBS is ’’calling the top’ ’ in April

CoreLogic-Moody’s Analytics Australian Home Value Index is forecasting prices will fall marginally between 2018 and 2020

HSBC forecasted last week that national property price growth will halve over the next 18 months

BIS Shrapnel has called a low 1 to 3 per cent house price growth

The Financial Review says: “Most of the house views of Australia banks and economic analysts are forecasting a soft landing in house prices with official interest rates unlikely to rise until the end of 2018.”

Put it on the nag in the 2.45

Tired of listening to fund managers and financial advisers?  How about buying a race horse?

Once the domain of millionaires, you can now buy your own share of a quality thoroughbred – trained by one of Australia’s top trainers, Kris Lees –  from $165.

miRunners aims to making owning a racehorse affordable.

Their website claims: “Experience your colt’s entire journey from purchase through to training and racing, seeing it first hand at its stables, going through its paces and when ready, at the races.”

Built over 8 years, miStable is the leading thoroughbred trainer and owner communications platform in Australia. The platform represents 275 professional trainers, more than half the trainer population in Australia, and 96,000 thoroughbred owners.

miRunners’ passion is to make thoroughbred ownership affordable, and bring the same standards and opportunities, to those who may have previously been unable to participate.

You may not make as much as you would in a term deposit, but at least you’ll be able to wear that fascinator with pride to the next race meeting.

Have a profitable week.

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