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By thinking about your assets as a portfolio, rather than a collection of separate investments, you can hone your strategy and make sure you’re getting the right overall balance between risk and return. 

When you think about investing, what comes to mind? For some, it’s all about shares, while others think about property. And then there’s your super, quietly accumulating funds for your retirement.

The truth is that most of us have a range of different investments across different investment types creating a diverse portfolio of assets we’ll rely on in retirement. 

Understanding the advantages and disadvantages of each of these investment types is one way to help ensure you get the most value from your money. 

Getting the right balance

Most investors understand that there’s a trade-off between risk and return, with higher growth assets generally involving more risk. But what you might not realise is that the right mix of investments can give you better returns without driving up your overall risk. 

That’s because different asset types tend to rise and fall at different times, so the right combination can help you profit from the rises while cushioning the impact of the falls. Your adviser can help you with how you should combine your assets to help achieve your objectives.

So it’s important to take a close look at all of your investments and think carefully about the role they play in helping you build your portfolio. 

Diversify your investments

Keeping large sums of money in the bank at current term deposit interest rates may not be the best investment in the long term. You could work out what large capital expenses you may have over the next three years and leave this sum in the bank, but the remainder should be invested in a more growth-oriented manner, depending on your appetite for risk.

If you have already purchased an investment property, you should consider building up investments in Australian shares, international shares and other asset classes to diversify your investment portfolio.

You could also look at a managed fund that is appropriately diversified across a number of asset classes, but a good portion should be in Australian shares to deliver the growth that can be achieved over the long term with this asset class. 

Investing in shares 

A 2012 study by the ASX has shown that around 6.68 million Australians  — around 38% of the adult population, participated in the Australian share market either directly, (through shares or other listed investments) or indirectly (through unlisted managed funds).With the benchmark S&P/ASX 200 returning 9.58%  a year for the five years to August 2013, it’s an enduring — if sometimes volatile — way to grow your money.  

And it’s worth considering investing in global shares also. With the Australian share market accounting for only 2.3% of the global share market in August 2013 , investing in global shares can provide additional diversification and investment opportunities. 

ASX Australian Share ownership study

 

This website contains information that is general in nature. It does not take into account the objectives, financial situation or needs of any particular person. You need to consider your financial situation and needs before making a decision based on this information.

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