Anna Jarvis, was the power behind the official establishment of Mother’s Day. She swore at her mother’s gravesite in 1905 to dedicate her life to her mother’s project, and establish a Mother’s Day to honor mothers, living and dead. She used carnations at the first Mother’s Day celebration, because carnations were her mother’s favourite flower.
Wearing a white carnation is to honor a deceased mother, wearing a pink carnation is to honor a living mother
History in a snapshot:
- Anna Jarvis became increasingly concerned over the commercialization of Mother’s Day: “I wanted it to be a day of sentiment, not profit.” She opposed of both the selling of flowers and the use of greeting cards proclaiming: “a poor excuse for the letter you are too lazy to write”.
- Anna Jarvis and the florist industry vehemently disagreed over the selling of flowers for Mother’s Day.
- In one press release criticizing the floral industry, Anna Jarvis wrote “What will you do to route charlatans, bandits, pirates, racketeers, kidnappers and other termites that would undermine with their greed one of the finest, noblest and truest movements and celebrations?”.
- When, in the 1930s, the U.S. Postal Service announced a Mother’s Day stamp with the image of Whistler’s Mother and a vase of white carnations, Anna Jarvis responded by campaigning against the stamp. She persuaded President Roosevelt to remove the words, Mother’s Day, but not the white carnations.
- Jarvis disrupted a meeting of the American War Mothers in the 1930s, protesting their sale of white carnations for Mother’s Day, and was removed by the police.
- In the words, of the Florists’ Review, “Miss Jarvis was completely squelched.” Mother’s Day remains, in the United States, one of the best sales days for florists.
- Anna Jarvis never had children of her own and was confined to a nursing home at the end of her life, penniless. Her nursing home bills were paid, unbeknownst to her, by the Florist’s Exchange.
Source: About.com – Womens HistoryShare on Facebook
A woman’s drive can be unparalleled! Piecing a day together like an impossible jigsaw puzzle: making meals, juggling school pickups and drop-offs, too many appointments, working, eating right, exercising right, time for you, time for your partner, walking the dog, feeding the cat, the list is potentially endless. And despite the labours of Hercules being crammed into every minute of the day, there’s always a niggle of self-doubt that seems to be inescapable.
Guilt over working when you should be relaxing and playing with the kids, fielding calls at work about charities and memberships, skipping the gym to take a pet to the vet… where does it stop?
Well we think its time you took a deep breath and did the following;
- Firstly step back and say, “wow” to everything you make-work in a day/week/month/year
- Secondly call “time-out” and make sure you’re on track. This doesn’t mean are the reports going to be handed in on time or is dinner about to burn, but are you where you need to be, for you?
Take the time to think about these steps and remember, if you can do everything in your “normal” day and still be here to tell the tale, then you’re more than strong enough to change what needs changing!
Follow these four steps and ease the unwarranted feelings of guilt and disappointment!
1. Passions are what you crave, love and find fulfilling. If these aren’t dominating your life, you need to change the balance. Identify what these passions are and if you’re not doing enough of them, start.
2. What does success mean to you? As a daughter, mother, wife, boss, employee and any other hat you might wear day-to-day. Identify this and make this your measuring stick. If this is on track you have NO reason to feel guilty.
3. Stop doing what you don’t like. Now, this doesn’t mean skipping-out on work or dumping the kids in day care and heading to the beach. But it does mean if you hate tennis, quit the social league you joined to impress people. Simply stop the unnecessary things in your life that don’t fit with points 1, 2 and 4.
4. Your environment matters, if you are an art lover who sits in a cubicle all day and comes home to a house with bare walls, you’re not going to be satisfied. Change this. No matter what your passion is, let it engulf you!Share on Facebook
New investors to property are often under the impression property is safe, less risky than shares and will always go up. Unfortunately this isn’t always the case, so here are 4 tips to help minimise your risks when investing in residential property.
1. Be clear about your investment objectives
Ask yourself why you want to invest in a residential property – provide additional income, grow your net worth (that’s the value of your total assets less the balance of your debts), provide tax benefits because you’re on a high income. The property you buy needs to satisfy your why.
Remember you’re buying property to create wealth so don’t let emotion influence your choice of investment property. You don’t need to like the look of the property or for it to be close to where you live. Property investing is about making money so your decisions should be based on money.
2. Stress Test Your Finances
When making a decision on how much you spend and invest in property think about what you can afford in terms of mortgage/ interest repayments, ongoing maintenance, council rates and body corporate (if you’re buying a strata titled property) and all the other costs associated with being a landlord.
Can your finances cope with interest rate increases? Major repair bills? Or the property being untenanted for a period of time? If you’re borrowing a substantial amount of the property value to negatively gear, you need to understand how much of your own cash flow you’ll be required to put in and for how many years.
Lower your risk by having buffers! For example don’t borrow the full amount the bank will lend you and make sure you have cash set aside. It’s crucial to have some additional borrowing capacity or access to cash for for unexpected expenses.
3. Get Advice
Get qualified advice about the best legal and ownership structure to use for the most effective tax and asset protection outcomes. Should the property be owned in your name, your spouse’s, jointly, or by a super fund or trust? Your individual circumstances both now and in the future should be considered.
While you’re getting advice you should also speak with a mortgage broker. They can find the right loan for you, how the mortgage should be structured (fixed, variable, interest only or P&I), what features will suit your needs and plan your repayment strategy.
Speaking with a financial adviser, or accountant, and a mortgage broker before you sign your name on the Sale and Mortgage Contracts can provide significant benefits, and help you avoid being locked into something that isn’t the most effective for your situation. Residential property is a significant investment so it pays to get it right.
4. Stick to your Rules
Before clicking through Realestate.com and heading off to those open inspections, set your investment criteria or rules to ensure you purchase the right property for your needs and not be influenced by your emotions. Your rules might include:
- buying lower than the intrinsic value of the property (wait for a bargain, they are out there)
- purchase in a suburb that’s had a history of consistent long-term growth
- there’s potential for you to add to the property’s value (i.e. coat of paint, landscaping, refurbishment)
- the expected gross rent is at least 10% of the value of the property
- the property will appeal to your ‘ideal tenant’ i.e. if you’re ideal tenant is a young family, the property will be close to a good school, if your ideal tenant is a student, the property is close to a university or along a public transport route to one, etc.
If the property doesn’t tick all your boxes, wait for the next one.
Knowledge is power
Did you know residential property generally follows a 7 to 10 year cycle between its peaks?
Looking back over the past few decades, cycles in Australia have generally lasted about seven to nine years and property growth has peaked (also called property booms) – in the following years: 1981, 1987, 1994, 2003 and 2010.
Unlike other assets, property is so segmented that individual residential suburbs and states can have a different cycle to others. Where we’re at in Adelaide can be very different to Melbourne, Sydney or Perth.
Understanding where we are in a property cycle is important for your purchasing decisions, and should influence your investment time-frame i.e. how long you’re prepared to keep the property.
The cycles occur because of a combination of factors like the state of the economy, interest rates, unemployment levels and social and political issues.
So where are we now? In general, most suburbs in Adelaide are recovering from a 2-3 year downturn.
The tips above refer to buying and holding for the long term (10 years or more) rather than entrepreneurial activity where you buy with a view to renovate and sell. Most of us women have too many other things going on than to star in our own ‘The Block’ series!!
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Quai Branly Museum in Paris specialises in exhibitions from international indigenous cultures. The museum, part of the legacy from former President Jacques Chirac, is only 9-years-old and has already exhibited a number of Australian artists.
Lena Nyabdi from the Kimberly region of WA was part of the 2006 opening and has now been selected to not only have work shown at the museum, but to create a piece that will essentially fill the museum’s 700 square metre rooftop. The piece is an enlarged version of Lena’s piece “Dayiwul Lirlmim” which is a representation of barramundi scales.
The original will be featured inside the museum and the large-scale reproduction will be the first piece not visible to visitors, it will however be visible from outer space via satellite technology!
Lena, who should turn 78 this year, only turned her talented hand to art later in life; an inspiration to women to follow their passions and an inspiration to Australian’s wanting to change the world!
Image via ABC online.Share on Facebook
What is a managed fund?
It’s an investment where many investors’ (‘000,000s, actually) money is pooled together and managed by a team of investment specialists who work towards specific investment objectives.
You can choose from the thousands of managed funds available, which are classified by the specific types of assets they invest in.
The types of managed funds are broad and might be described as retail funds, investment funds, a master trust, a multi-sector fund, a unit trust, a diversified fund, a sector specific fund, a managed investment, a managed investment scheme or a fund of funds … the list goes on.
Benefits of using managed funds to invest
- You get access to professional investors monitoring your investments and buying and selling when the price is right (hopefully).
- You can invest in assets you wouldn’t normally be able to access as an individual investor. For example you can invest in Google, McDonalds, or eBay by using certain International share managed funds.
- If you don’t have a lot of money to invest, a managed fund can give you good diversification – for example if you have $5,000, you could buy 1-5 shares on the ASX, or using the $5,000 to invest in a ASX share Managed Fund, you’ll be effectively investing in between 40 – 60 shares. Investing in a larger number of shares reduces your risk of losing money or not getting enough income.
- If you don’t have a lot of confidence, managed funds are a great way to start investing in shares and property as you can start small (as little as $1,000) and see how it goes before putting more money in.
- You get less paperwork – the fund is doing the buying and selling and does the admin.
- They’re a cost-effective way of implementing a regular investment plan
i.e. $400 per month, invested every month using a regular direct debit, essentially the same way we all save for our retirement (via superannuation).
- You can easily ‘switch’ investments. For example, you can change from Australian shares to cash, from cash to property, and international shares if you decide; however there are proven benefits in choosing a mix that suits your needs then sticking with it for the longer term.
Common types of managed funds
The most popular type of managed fund is the ‘diversified’ (or multi-sector) fund. This fund invests across a mix of assets including cash, fixed interest, shares and property.
Other common forms of managed funds are:
- Income funds – aim to deliver a regular income for investors.
- Growth funds – aim to generate capital growth, rather than an income, although investors may still receive distributions.
- Sector specific funds – these invest in one asset class only ie. Australian shares 100%, or property – 100% (note most property funds invest in both real bricks and mortar property, as well as listed property securities (think Westfield shopping center shares)
- Capital guaranteed funds – guarantees that an investor can claim back their initial investment after a certain period
- Regional funds – invest in a specific region, such as South America, China, India, Asia, Emerging markets, Europe, Japan or the US. Some of these take into consideration currency/ foreign exchange effects, others don’t – they’ll either be hedged or un-hedged.
How do I Invest?
All managed funds must be registered with the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC), the financial regulator. Each fund must issue a PDS. They have a lot of general investment information about the risks of investing, detailed information on the fees, and the number of investment vehicles available and the risks associated with each option. Most funds have a Fact Sheet which is much easier to read, so start there.
You buy units in the Managed Fund. Just like shares have a share price, managed funds have a unit price. The unit price goes up and down daily depending on the value of the assets it’s invested in. Investors aim for the unit price to go up over periods of years to increase the value of their funds.
Managed funds also pay distributions, which are similar to dividends or interest payments. Some pay distributions monthly, annually, quarterly or twice a year. Your distributions can be cashed out, or you can re-invest them to add to your investment.
You need to clearly understand what your goals are when investing in a managed fund, what do you want the fund to achieve (5% or 10%+ returns), how much risk are you prepared to take, how long will you leave the funds before you cash them out, the costs and the long term track record and history of the fund manager you give your money to.
If you have any questions on Managed funds, please contact us at email@example.com.Share on Facebook
Had enough of Easter eggs?? Why not give some thought to your retirement nest egg!
How much will you need to retire? $350,000, $500,000, $1M or $2M? Understanding early on in your working life what your number is will help you see just how important it is to plan for this major savings goal.
How much did you spend on Easter this year?
Somewhere close to $100 on chocolates, hot cross buns, BBQ meat and a bottle of wine?
Consider that 30 years of spending $100 on Easter Sunday is $3,000, probably more than you’d expect, but not astronomical…HOWEVER if you take that $100 today and invest it, then every year for the next 30 invested another $100 of Easter spending, you would accumulate $13,241*.
We have historically low rate interest rates which has created conditions perfect for increasing repayments on your mortgage. With interest rates so low any extra money you can put towards your mortgage will have a HUGE impact! As we know, rates don’t stay in one position; in fact we expect them to start increasing sometime next year. So use this time to be extraordinary, juggle a bit to make those extra payments and invest in your future. The time has never been better to do it!
Why not put in your own annual Easter spending and create a nest egg over 30 years of Easter frugalness!
*Based on an annual deposit of $100 and it being invested in an asset that provides an average return of 8% p.a, straight line.
We used the MoneySmart Compound Interest calculator to calculate this.Share on Facebook
In January we blogged our list of 10 extraordinary women worth watching in 2013, and as we enter the second quarter of the year there’s already been some interesting developments.
The biggest shake-up has been Nicola Roxon’s decision to resign from her post as Attorney General, Minister for Emergency Management and politics as a whole. Nicola has chosen not to contest the next election after a career of 5 terms and left a message for future public servants, especially women.
“While it is time for me to retire from politics, I strongly encourage the next generation to consider public service as a path for them. And particularly to women I say the sky is the limit and the political system needs you!”
We’ll be watching to see what Nicola does post-politics!
Not long after our initial post (and I am sure as most of you are aware) Ita Buttrose was awarded Australian of the Year not a small feat and very well deserved! Seemingly she has gracefully taken the title in her stride. Not surprising for a woman who has championed so many worthy causes, and doesn’t look like slowing down anytime soon!
Jane Allis has also chalked up another achievement with her induction into the Australian Business Women’s Network Hall of Fame! This honour recognises Jane’s achievements in business which show some of the data we previously posted may have been slightly out of date with a turnover of over $130 million a year and 240 stores worldwide!
Back to politics and Penny Wong has announced that “More women are sitting on the boards of the Commonwealth’s eight government business enterprises (GBEs) than ever before and, pleasingly, three women are now in Chair positions”. Let’s hope that these positions aren’t jeopardised by the in-fighting we’ve seen recently!
And lastly Nareen Young sheds some light on women over 45 in the work place, a very pertinent read considering the WTF Retirement Funshop we hosted on Wednesday night!
Read the blog post here
http://www.financeminister.gov.au/media/2013/mr-295-13.htmlShare on Facebook
Five years is a long time!! Imagine a baby being born, growing into a toddler and then starting school. Five years ago share markets took a nose-dive falling more than 50%, and since then have generally underperformed compared to safer investments like term deposits. Some of us who invested five years ago still haven’t fully recovered our losses.
From late 2012, the Australian share market has been on the increase and given investors a massive 26% return since June 2012. Just a few weeks ago the All Ords reached the 5,000 level – the highest it’s been in nearly 2 years (April 27 2011 to be exact).
What you need to know about the All Ords:
Established in January 1980, it contains nearly all the shares listed on the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX). The market capitalisation (if you’re thinking what’s that? – see note at end) of the companies included in the All Ords index amounts to over 95% of the value of all shares listed on the ASX.
When established, the All Ords had a base index of 500 – this means that if the index is currently at 5000 points, the value of shares in the All Ords has increased tenfold since 1980 (not factoring in the effects of inflation of course).
In April 2000, the All Ords was restructured to consist of the 500 largest companies by value. At the same time a new benchmark, the S&P/ASX 200 was introduced.
- 1 November 2007, the index was at 6873.2, its highest ever value.
- 22 January 2008, it had fallen to 5,222.0 points due to the US 2007 subprime mortgage financial crisis, a 24% fall!
- 6 March 2009, it was at a low of 3,111.7 points, in the wake of a worldwide drop in share values, 54% less than the 1 November 2007 high.
- As of 14 September 2009, the index has rebounded to 4,568.5 points, representing a 46.8% increase from the 6 March 2009 low.
- On 5 August 2011, the index fell to 4159 points, with a 4.6% fall in one day, the biggest fall since the subprime mortgage crisis.
- On 13 February 2013, the index rose by 28.4 (0.59%) to 5,010.30, passing 5000.
Like a child, it has its good times and bad times totally stressful but still managing to reward us at the most unexpected times!
The All-Ordinaries Index is the most popular benchmark for Australian shares. For more info, see http://www.asxallordinaries.com
As represented below the All Ords has had a good run since November 2012.
ASX All Ords Index – 1 year chart
Based on the rise from the Jun 12 low to the high at the middle of Feb 13 this chart confirms that the Australian share market is ‘technically speaking’ in a bull market.
If we now go back further in time and look at the movements over 5 years (below), the recent market rises are significant but you can see it puts a bit more perspective around the increase, as it still only brings the share market up into a range in which it’s been trapped in for over 3 years.
It also shows us there’s still more rises needed for investors who had money in the market in 2008, to recover their losses. Based on over 100 years of history, markets always rise above their last highs.
ASX All Ords Index – 5 year chart
Here are our thoughts:
- Our official interest rate is 3%, just above a record low. Investors (including your massive super funds) are looking for better returns than 4% on a Term Deposit or bonds, (especially if they remember the 8% they were getting in 2008). They’re replacing these lower returning investments with shares, which are paying good yields/ dividends, with the added bonus of franking credits.
- There is a lot of money out there (including overseas) looking for somewhere to invest. Our shares, especially those with high yields are looking attractive to these investors. The major banks are offering yields of 5.4%-6.7%, which translates to 7.7% 9.6 per cent with benefits of franking.
- Recent ‘earnings strength’ reported by companies (in reality its actually just less companies reporting downgrades and not meeting their profit expectations). This is really important as it’s the first time in a long while that companies earnings/ profits are living up to the expectations of what they’d projected they’d be able to deliver.
- We’re still concerned there isn’t enough of the earnings growth and this will be the REAL test. Much of the profits reported are from companies reducing their costs rather than growing their income.
- Improving economic conditions in China, which = more demand for our resources and creates a flow-on effect. Yes, China’s growth has slowed but that’s what their government was aiming to achieve.
Should you be investing in Australian Shares right now ?
- To get ahead, you need to get started – now is better than waiting another year or two as ‘time’ is the #1 ingredient for growing your wealth;
BUT…and this is important - Any share investment should be with money you don’t need for the next 5 to 7 years. Like kids, a share investment is a long-term commitment, requiring patience as sometimes they behave badly.
- You need a strategy or a plan for investing – this may be dollar cost averaging over the next 12 months, determining a % amount of your money to invest in shares and the remainder into something with less volatility.
- Yes, the past few months have been wonderful but is it sustainable for the rest of 2013?If the current trend continues we will end up with a 60% + return more than 5 times the 5,10 and 20 year average return on Australian shares, so its safe to assume that at some time in the future shares will go down – you will need the discipline and confidence to stay invested at that time.
- We cant predict when markets will go up and down but we can control how long we stay invested in the markets and that’s what will give you the results you’re after. Isn’t sooner better than later?
- Investors should only consider shares as an investment if they are prepared to trade-off security of their savings, for a higher potential long-term return than sitting in cash.
Just to clarify:
- Market capitalisation (or market cap) is the total value of the issued shares of a company; it’s = to the share price X the number of shares in the company and can be used as the public opinion of a company’s net worth.
- Franking Credits – Companies pay 30% tax on their profits. Dividends are a payment of those profits to shareholders, and the ATO has already taxed the company, so it wouldn’t really be fair if the ATO taxed you again on that same income. So, they give out ‘franking credits’, also known as a dividend imputation. It makes sure the income generated by the company and passed on to you the investor, is only taxed once. It also means that if your marginal tax rate is lower than 30%, you can get a tax-offset against your other income.
Dollar cost averaging is making small but regular (generally monthly) investments. It gives you the benefit if fluctuations in the value of the investment as you’re buying at different stages in the market cycle. In some months you’ll pay more, in other’s you’ll pay less – it averages out.
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I always find it funny that so many women fear networking or judge it, they mistake the art of networking as an equivalent to brown nosing.
Yet business and life is almost inevitably about people and relationships. The people you get to know, the way you treat them and the quality of your relationships with customers, employees, suppliers, family and friends are all critical to your emotional and financial net worth.
So what is networking really all about? Simply put it is:
- The opportunity to meet new and interesting people
- The sharing and exchanging of ideas without threat
- Transcending your norm – finding kindred spirits outside of your comfort zone
- The opportunity to ask for information without condition
- Being prepared to give information without condition
- Access to trends, new research, technologies, even job opportunities you wouldn’t normally hear about
You get the picture, but how do you go about it..?
- Practice makes perfect – this will require a big step outside of your comfort zone
- Don’t shy away from opportunities to meet new people
- Join a group/s that will create networking opportunities
- Attend as many networking events as possible – if you are new to networking, there is always going to be more than one person in the room just like you.
Two easy steps to getting started:
Social networks – they seem to face us at every turn and they’re great tools for keeping up with the latest news and trends, but they should not become the only network you subscribe to! We’ve mentioned previously the importance of following experts in the field via social media; a great way to gain different perspectives and further develop your own thoughts on the issues that matter to you. Just search for people with similar interests on twitter, people in your field on LinkedIn and both on facebook!
Networking evenings – more and more we’re hearing about new jobs and opportunities being taken up by friends and family through networks, both professional and social, rather than through traditional job advertisements. It would appear that old adage of “it’s not what you know, it’s who you know” is still in full swing. Groups and social clubs will often have introductory evenings and will host other networking evenings which are open to the general public i.e. YOU!
There are networking opportunities around every corner, so no more hiding in the office or quiet nights in – its time to get out there and network – when times are tough it could be your biggest asset!Share on Facebook