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


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.


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.


RNZ Radio 26 July 2018

Scams - warning signs and false friends

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NZ Herald 17 February 2018

Q&As: It's not crazy to buy when the share market falls
- Recent volatility helps KiwiSaver members decide about their fund
- KiwiSaver or term deposits for a retiree?
- Withdrawals from all managed funds are tax-free
- What happens to KiwiSaver tax credit in the year you turn 65?
- Is internet banking safe?

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NZ Herald 10 February 2018

Q&As: What to do when employer doesn't make KiwiSaver contributions on overtime pay
- Is it OK for employer to encourage workers to join KiwiSaver?
- KiwiSaver withdrawals not taxed
- Long-term share and rental property investments about equal
- Better to buy a section for tiny house?
- Last week's angry reader now remorseful

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NZ Herald 3 February 2018

Q&As: Is a tiny house on wheels financially wise?
- Young couple should go ahead and buy a home, despite the market
- Last week's binary options victim "deserves to be fleeced"
- 2 Q&As about Israel's connections to binary options
- Do more bathrooms mean more use of water?

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NZ Herald 27 January 2018

Q&As: An expensive lesson for binary options trader
- Where was the interest when customer transferred money between bank accounts?
- Hard to find a small newer house
- Why houses were particularly small in the 1930s and 40s

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NZ Herald 7 October 2017

Q&As: Reader likely to be scam victim. Get out now!
- Don't overlook risks in share v property comparison
- Reader offers data, but is it defensible?
- 100% from shares in 5 years - without dividends
- Does recent history spell doom?

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RNZ Radio 29 June 2017

Two listeners' scam stories and what we can learn from them

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RNZ Radio 1 June 2017

Investment risks - Part 3: Looking over your shoulder or overseas, or overlooking inflation

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NZ Herald 29 April 2017

Q&As: Binary options scam victim wants to warn others
- Scammers can fool anyone
- Reader's suggestions for couple in 60s and broke
- Hard to stop 'dole bludgers'
- Superannuitant objects to being called a beneficiary

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RNZ Radio 30 March 2017

Gender and Investing

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RNZ Radio 24 November 2016

One person's take on the Fraud Film Festival:

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NZ Herald 21 May 2016

Q&As: Rates postponement a good option for couple
- Fraud investigator writes about scams ...
- ... And so does a victim
- Vanguard not the only US index fund option

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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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Radio NZ 3 December 2015

Too good to be true? Warning signs of a scam

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NZ Herald 4 July 2015

Q&As: Women's gifting circles look to be illegal, and ...
- ... they could lead to 'an abundance of hate'
- Shortish-term money shouldn't be in shares, despite adviser
- An advantage of regularly investing the same amount, whatever the market does
- One provider charges less for non-KiwiSaver funds

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NZ Herald 20 June 2015

Q&As: Are "women's gifting circles" legit?
- Is bank financial adviser giving "best" advice?
- KiwiSaver tax credits don't cross the Tasman
- Tips on getting more from a revolving credit mortgage

Money column for June 20 2015

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NZ Herald 2 May 2015

Q&As: How to persuade 20-somethings to stick with KiwiSaver
- An offer too good to not miss
- Get legal advice when lending to adult children
- Can bankruptcy distribution be undone?
- Last week's picture was misleading

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NZ Herald 26 April 2014

Q&As: Single mum can't decide whether to renovate or sell
- How come some seemed to get more Genesis Energy shares?
- No I won't give info on gold savings plan
- What might be behind gold plan?
- How many employers stop KiwiSaver contributions at 65?
- Is employer playing fair with KiwiSaver contributions?
- Complications for some self-employed in KiwiSaver

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NZ Herald 19 April 2014

Q&As: Gold plan will make us all rich - or will it?
- Do Chinese buyers of NZ houses get cheap mortgages?
- How KiwiSaver works for the self-employed

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NZ Herald 16 February 2013

Q&As: A company that promises way too much. Steer clear!
- 2 Q&As about how reverse mortgages might affect government residential care subsidies
- More on relationship property next week

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NZ Herald 14 May 2011

Q&As: Foreclosed property seminar reminds me of investment warning lists
- Government's proposed changes don't affect current KiwiSaver decisions
- Do banks lend more than their total deposits?
- Am I brainwashed, and perpetuating myths about family trusts?
- Fair enough that housing is not cheap here, says American who moved to NZ

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Syndicated column 9 April 2011 - How not to be ripped off

There's no denying that some fraudsters are clever. Bernie Madoff - the American now serving 150 years in prison for probably the biggest rip-off of all time - didn't promise investors 20 or 30 per cent returns, which would have looked highly suspicious. Instead, it was a steady return of around 10.5 per cent a year. While you can't get returns that high on a steady basis, it obviously sounded possible to thousands of Americans.

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NZ Herald 2 April 2011

Q&As: Executives of failed finance companies can't get away with wearing the dunce's hat
- Beware "investment houses" offering 20-per-cent-plus returns
- Why did long-term investment go backwards?

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NZ Herald 22 January 2011

Q&As: Tax cutting scheme likely to bring much more wealth to the company than to a reader
- How recipients of below-market share offers can get their own back
- A reader shows her bank just what she thinks of it
- How is our gold price forecaster doing?
- Some help with finding a good financial adviser

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NZ Herald 1 August 2009

Q&As: Reader's sad story about racing tips company
Horse breeder and racer gives his perspective on tips companies
When is a KiwiSaver cash fund not a cash fund?

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NZ Herald 25 July 2009

Q&As: Steps a middle-income family can take towards buying their own home
Scams not always easy to spot
The presence of family trusts could prevent governments from means testing NZ Super
Has the worst already happened for kids in KiwiSaver?

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NZ Herald 18 July 2009

Q&As: Several signs that company offering racing tips is not the path to riches
Managers of Westpac's poorly performing KiwiSaver cash fund ask investors to be patient
Happy investor says "KiwiSaver rocks" - even though he's too pessimistic over the future of NZ Super

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Syndicated column 30 June 2009 - How would you have done in financial knowledge survey?

It's question time. How would you have answered the following in a recent survey: "Which is generally considered to make you the most money over the next 15 to 20 years: a savings account, range of shares, range of fixed interest investments, or a cheque account?"

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NZ Herald July 5 2008

Q&As: Average Joe Bloggs, sick of the rich and poor ripping off the system, seeks tax breaks.
"Fair Go" television show overlooked three important points when criticising KiwiSaver for children.

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NZ Herald September 23 2006

This week, and through September, we are running excerpts from Mary Holm's bestselling book, "Get Rich Slow: How to grow your wealth the safe and savvy way." Mary's regular Q&A column will resume in October.


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Syndicated column March 28 2006: What we don't know CAN hurt us

One of the first things journalists are taught is to make the first sentence of an article a "grabber", something that will perhaps surprise readers and make them read on.

So this column is officially starting now: Every New Zealander over 65 gets NZ Super, no matter how rich they are.

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Holm Truths spring 04

Investor beware!: How to spot a rip-off or scam

Also in this issue: From the Mailbox - Plans for single mother of 41

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