Kiwi Saver, Mary Holm financial writer and columnist

  Independent and down to earth financial info you can trust
  from Mary Holm, New Zealand's most widely read investment writer

Archives

Read Mary's current Herald column on-line now, listen to recent radio broadcasts, or search the archives for previous subjects in her Herald and syndicated columns or broadcasts.


International Investments

The following is a selection of articles and radio broadcasts mainly from January 2005 to the present. To explore this topic in more depth and access earlier columns, please use the search box.

Articles

NZ Herald 14 May 2016

Q&As: Steer clear of Hong Kong share pitch
- Hedging applies to most KiwiSaver investors
- A way to hedge an index fund investment

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RNZ Radio 12 May 2016

More on spreading your money around

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NZ Herald 7 May 2016

Q&As: Thai retirement not so cheap
- Buffett not unbalanced
- 3 Q&As on investing in international index funds

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NZ Herald 28 June 2014

Q&As: Car buying decisions not always rational
- Should young man invest in Fiji, buy a house, or neither?
- Why it takes so long to process KiwiSaver contributions
- When must self-employed make employer contributions to KiwiSaver?
- I will try to run more non-KiwiSaver Q&As
- Last week's picture offends a reader

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NZ Herald 15 June 2013

Q&As: Reader's message about international shares is good, but not his arguments
- How hedging international investments works
- How to be in KiwiSaver as well as another super scheme

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NZ Herald 25 May 2013

Q&As: Easier to borrow to invest in property than shares, but that's not always a plus
- Tax on international shares is different, but not necessarily worse
- Anti-KiwiSaver reader gives me all the more reason to write about KiwiSaver

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NZ Herald 27 February 2010

Q&As: KiwiSaver trustee change raises questions about how much trustees protect members
Hazards of dealing with an overseas sharebroker
What's the difference between investing and gambling?

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NZ Herald 20 February 2010

Q&As: Paying off mortgage - and getting rid of badly undiversified portfolio - are two great ideas
KiwiSaver can work well for student
Laying out the details on KiwiSaver exit fees
Buying shares directly from overseas broker cheaper in short run, but may not be wise

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NZ Herald 13 February 2010

Q&As: Some active share funds will do better than passive index funds, but it's impossible to predict which ones
Don't go chasing high-performing KiwiSaver funds - here's how to choose your provider
Another index fund available in New Zealand
Fee-charging advisers don't gain from putting clients in higher risk investments than they should

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NZ Herald 6 February 2010

Q&As: It's not wise to let yourself be forced into being a landlord
Which New Zealand providers offer passive or index funds?
What are the minimum investments in passive funds?
Details on how the new resolution schemes for disputes with advisers will work

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NZ Herald March 21 2009

Q&As: Tips for retired couple whose interest income has halved.
Savings accounts may pay more interest than term deposits - but take care.
Tax on foreign shares seems tough in current environment

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Syndicated column November 11 2008 - To hedge or not to hedge?

There are two key questions around investing overseas: Should you do it? And if you do, should you hedge your investment, so it's not affected by movements in the New Zealand dollar. The first answer is "Yes". The second is trickier.

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Syndicated column October 25 2008 - Same rules for big and little savers

There's plenty for Joe and Joanne Saver to learn from two recent news items about the NZ Superannuation Fund, sometimes called the Cullen Fund. In short:

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NZ Herald December 8 2007

Q&As: Why 20 shares are much better than two.
Reader claims diversification is not a great idea. I disagree.
Is land a lower risk investment than a share fund?

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NZ Herald October 13 2007

For a few weeks, this column is running highlights from Mary Holm's quarterly newsletter Holm Truths. Mary's regular Q&A column will resume on October 27.

STAY AWAY

New Zealanders' increasing tendency to travel overseas is a wonderful development. We enjoy it, we learn tolerance and we pick up ideas - ranging from what to eat to how to make a living.

The trend has made us all more aware of the changing value of the Kiwi dollar. When it rises, we perhaps take a longer or more expensive trip. But when it falls, we don't all...

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NZ Herald April 7 2007

Q&As: A year-old letter shows the danger in trying to predict what the Kiwi dollar will do
"Plodders" wonder how to match the investments of their landlord friends
Traders in shares beyond Australasia no longer pay the old tax on capital gains
How about taxing rental property the same way as international shares?

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Syndicated column April 3 2007: New tax rules not so bad

As the new tax regime on shares in countries beyond Australasia takes effect, many taxpayers seem to think it's tougher than it really is.

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NZ Herald March 31 2007

Q&As: Have you got what it takes to borrow to invest in a share fund?
How frequent traders in international shares will be taxed under the new rules.
How Inland Revenue might catch property traders.

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NZ Herald March 24 2007

Q&As: Should we blame the banks for soaring house prices?
2 Q&As on the new fair dividend rate tax on non-Australasian shares - the threshold, and trying to get around the rules
2Q&As on home equity release - lifetime interest rates and break fees if you change your mind

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NZ Herald March 10 2007

Q&As: Many elderly, and others, could benefit from rates postponement schemes.
Why floating interest rates might be better - for home equity release schemes and ordinary mortgages.
A not-so-dumb question about the $50,000 exemption for international tax changes, and a new source of info on the changes.

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NZ Herald February 24 2007

Seeking your questions about KiwiSaver
Q&As: Woman in mid 50s, who is renting, explores options for buying a home
2 Q&As about the $50,000 threshold in the new regime on taxation of international shares

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NZ Herald February 17 2007

Q&As: Is the Kiwi dollar to blame for poor overseas investment performance?
How foreign dividends will be dealt with under the new tax rules.
Where to go for historical foreign exchange data - for tax purposes.
A lionish company bites back.

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NZ Herald February 10 2007

Q&As: The warning signs in investment ads
Should we adjust investment returns to allow for inflation?
How best to assess long-term returns on shares and property
How to tell if an Australian company qualifies for the tax exemption

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NZ Herald February 3 2007

Q&As: Unlucky reader challenges the value of index funds.
Questions galore on the $50,000 threshold in the new international share tax regime.
How to get historical foreign exchange data for calculating that threshold.

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NZ Herald January 20 2007

Q&As: Are index funds, which I recommend, inferior share fund investments, as Herald columnist Brian Gaynor claims?
A small New Zealand town has it all, a resident claims!

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NZ Herald January 13 2007

Q&As: Options for a newly retired couple with $200,000 and no home include part-time work, buying a home with a flat attached, an interest-only mortgage and equity release.
Two Q&As on which investments are affected by the new tax law on international shares, and how it will work for investors.

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NZ Herald December 16 2006

Q&As: Should man, 64, get student loan for the income, given that he probably won't ever repay it?
Passing shares down the generations has good and bad points.
Why did GPG get an exemption from the new international share tax rules?
Woman makes great progress in one short year.
New charity aims to help children help themselves.

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NZ Herald November 18 2006

Q&As: Should we get bigger tax deductions for donations to charity? Also - give Christmas gifts to those who really need them.
Readers disagree over the price of a 1950s pie.
Buying shares company by company, over the years, not the best strategy.
Is the new proposed tax on international shares fair?

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Syndicated column November 7 2006: An exceptionally unlucky reader

International index funds, a favourite long-term investment of mine, don't look good to one reader.

"I bought about $2000 worth of WiNZ in 2000," he writes. "They are now 27 per cent lower (have been for quite a while). Fortunately for me it was not a huge amount.

"Twenty years is a long time to wait for the fund to claw its way back up. Hopefully all the investors in index funds can wait that long!"

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NZ Herald October 28 2006

Q&As: A reader finds a flaw in my "avoid the rear-view mirror" argument. Or does he?

Would NZ's tax revenue actually increase if we all invested offshore?
Inland Revenue says it can't fix everything at once.

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NZ Herald October 21 2006

Q&As: Is there an 18-year cycle for industrial and resource shares?
Why index fund of Aussie shares has done much worse than its index.
Limited submissions on tax changes not good enough.
NZ shares, already favoured, shouldn't get still more favourable tax treatment.

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NZ Herald October 14 2006

Q&As: Why I won't do research on an Aussie resource index fund.
Too little time to study the new tax plans for international share investments.

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NZ Herald August 26 2006

Q&As: What you should check out before you buy a house. And who should do the inspection.
Some possible progress on the proposed changes to international investments tax.
Who's right and wrong in the maths on the new coins.
Financial adviser explains how "Jane", with her $1 million in term deposits, could save on fees.

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Holm Truths winter 06

Stay Away: Don't rush to bring your shares back from overseas.
Also in this issue: From the Mailbox - Giving the kids a great start with regular investing

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NZ Herald July 1 2006

Q&As: Comparing NZ and other countries' taxes and lifestyles.
Several Q&As on government's tax proposals, including submissions info, Bruce Sheppard quotes and size of Grey List share markets.
A promise for a tax-change-free column next week!

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NZ Herald June 24 2006

Q&As: All on government tax proposals

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NZ Herald June 17 2006

Q&As: All on government's tax proposals

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NZ Herald June 10 2006

Q&As: All on government's tax proposals.

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NZ Herald June 3 2006

Q&As: All on government's tax proposals.

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NZ Herald May 27 2006

Q&As: All on government's tax proposals.

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NZ Herald May 20 2006

Q&As: All on government's tax proposals.

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NZ Herald May 13 2006

Q&As: All on government tax proposals

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NZ Herald May 6 2006

Q&As: All on government's tax proposals

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NZ Herald April 29 2006

Q&As: All on government tax proposals

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NZ Herald April 22 2006

Q&As: All on government's tax proposals

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NZ Herald March 18 2006

Q&As: Man panicked and bailed out of share fund. No!
Real Estate Institute denies that it's hard to buy a house in NZ.

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NZ Herald October 8 2005

Q&As: 5 on how different types if families should be taxed.
Many readers sent submissions to the government on proposed changes on taxation of international shares.
Am I a National Party supporter?

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NZ Herald October 1 2005

Q&As: Should single people get tax breaks too?
Several Q&As on proposed tax changes on international shares.
How you can sell your home via a website.
What are our tax rates?

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NZ Herald September 24 2005

Q&As: What are reasonable conditions for a home buyer to insist on?
Government's proposed tax changes on international shares.

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Syndicated column May 17 2005: The message in the foot and mouth threat

The "Invest offshore" message was loud and clear the other day, after the news broke that somebody may have released foot and mouth disease on Waiheke Island.

By the time you read this, the claim may have been proven a hoax. Here's hoping so. If that's the case, take warning from it.

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Holm Truths spring 03

Life, limbs and livelihood - How much life, disability and income protection insurance do you need?

Also in this issue: Great Debate - Australian v international shares

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Holm Truths winter 03

First things first: How much should you invest in bonds, shares, property and so on?

Also in this issue: Great Debate: NZ v international shares

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Holm Truths summer 02-03

Lessons from past mislead: Investing in what did well last year, or selling what did badly, usually does more harm than good

Also in this issue: Great Debate - Low v high insurance excesses

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Holm Truths spring 02

Don't bail out: Even when the market falls, stick with your long-term investments

Also in this issue: Great Debate - Trading v buy and hold

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Holm Truths spring 01

Taking on the world: Spread your share investment money across the world

Also in this issue: Great Debate - Investing v repaying your mortgage

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