What do people do in uncertain times?
Get capital guaranteed investments
Investments that offer a capital guarantee give you positive investment returns in good times, while protecting you from losing your money if markets fall. It’s also important to remember that although your money will be protected, you’ll pay higher costs for this kind of security.
Put your eggs in different baskets
It’s commonly believed that a reliable way to reduce the risk of losing money is by diversifying your investments. This means spreading your money across different asset classes, regions, sectors and investment managers to increase your chance of getting the best-performing investments.
Allow for time in the market, not timing the market
Timing the market is when you try to buy when the market is low and sell when it's high. Of course, anticipating the market's movements can be extremely difficult. But giving your investment time in the market instead, allows it to recover from short-term downturns and experience the highs of the market. For example, history shows that while Australian shares may experience negative returns over the short term, returns tend to be higher than cash over the longer term.
Investing the same amount at regular intervals, known as dollar cost averaging, can help take the guesswork out of investing, since you don't have to worry about trying to predict the market.
If the market is falling on the day you buy, you'll get more units/shares on that day. It's the opposite when the market rises. This tends to average out the investment price and smooth out market fluctuations. It also means you don't risk investing a large amount at the wrong time, or waiting too long and missing a rebound in the market.
Play it safe
Some investors prefer to change their superannuation fund’s investment mix to something with a lower risk profile for the sake of security. This includes fixed interest products like growth bonds or term deposits. The downside of this approach, however, is that your super won’t perform as well when markets go up.
Are you prepared?
Many investors still remember the effects of the global financial crisis (GFC), especially on their investments. Superannuation funds generally suffered losses during that period from 2007 to 2009, which affected retirement plans. To protect yourself from a similar situation in the future you can minimise risk with strategies, such as:
- choosing guaranteed investments
- diversifying your portfolio
- thinking long term.
What benefits can I get around my retirement age?
If you’re approaching retirement, you may be entitled to government benefits now or within the coming years. These benefits may include:
- age pension—if you’re above 65 years old and meet certain income and asset requirements, you may be eligible to receive the Age Pension
- pensioner concession card—you can access cheaper utility and medical bills, and in some states discounted public transport
- carer’s allowance—payments and services to assist if you take care of someone
- pension bonus scheme or work bonus—lump sum payments if you’re above the pension age and still working
- seniors cards—depending on your state and how many hours you work, you can receive discounts for a range of businesses
- government loans specifically for pensioners
- tax offsets
- low-cost bank accounts.
For more details on how to get access to these government benefits, visit the Department of Human Services website.
Important informationShow more
It’s important to consider your particular circumstances and read the relevant Product Disclosure Statement or Terms and Conditions before deciding what’s right for you. This information hasn’t taken your circumstances into account.
This information is provided by AMP Life Limited. Read our Financial Services Guide for information about our services, including the fees and other benefits that AMP companies and their representatives may receive in relation to products and services provided to you. All information on this website is subject to change without notice.