Welcome to the 2020 Summer Edition of the BFG Report
Home Help – Looking After Loved Ones
When talking about Government aged care services, many people associate it with nursing homes. However, residential aged care or ‘nursing homes’ represent less than 10% of the formal aged care system.
The most popular government-subsidised programs are the ‘Commonwealth Home Support Programme’ and ‘Home Care’ packages.
Commonwealth Home Support Programme
The Government’s Commonwealth Home Support Programme (CHSP) can provide ongoing or short-term care and support services including help with housework, personal care, meals and food preparation, transport, shopping, health and social support.
To access the CHSP, you need to have a home support assessment completed by a local assessor from a Regional Assessment Service (RAS).
The services provided under this programme are subsidised by the Government and any fees charged are negotiated with the service provider. You do not need to negotiate the subsidies. However, you may want to shop around as costs will vary between providers. Arrangements to waive any fees can be made for people in financial hardship.
Home Care Packages
If you have more complex care needs at home, you may be eligible for a government-subsidised Home Care package. An Aged Care Assessment Team (ACAT) will assess your Home Care package needs. In Victoria, this is called Aged Care Assessment Services (ACAS). There are four levels of Home Care Packages to meet an individual’s care needs ranging from basic to high.
As part of this tailored package, you can receive coordinated services such as:
- home maintenance including gardening, home modifications and cleaning gutters and windows
- Clinical Nursing Care such as hearing and vision services
- Allied Health including occupational therapy, physiotherapy, podiatry and speech pathology
- transport to travel to appointments or activities such as shopping.
The cost of the Home Care Package will vary depending on the package level and your loved one’s income. An income-tested fee may apply which can be as high as $30.86 per day. This means the cost of the Home Care Package might be anywhere between $3,515 per year to $15,188 per year depending on your loved one’s income.
Investment Market Review – Quarter Ended 30 September 2020
The S&P/ASX 300 Accumulation Index struggled against global markets in the September 2020 quarter, falling slightly by 0.1%. Information Technology was the top performer (up 12.3%) followed by Consumer Discretionary (up 7.7%) and Property (up 6.7%). Gradual easing of lockdown measures across most of Australia and companies beating market expectations in reporting season were notable drivers for the Consumer Discretionary and Property sectors. Home improvement companies in particular, such as Nick Scali and Beacon Lighting saw strong growth.
1 Year is -10.00%
5 Years is 7.40%
10 Years is 6.90%
Listed Property Trusts
The Australian Real Estate Investment Trust (A-REIT) sector performed strongly, rising 7.4% during the September quarter, continuing to regain some of the losses experienced during the March quarter.
The easing of lockdown restrictions across Australia (other than Melbourne) was a key driver of this improvement. Government stimulus also supported consumer spending which saw real estate associated with e-commerce or retail businesses benefit substantially both here and overseas. For example, logistics landlord Goodman Group which provides warehousing real estate to major e-commerce providers rose almost 20.8%.
Listed Property Trusts
1 year is -15.80%
5 Years is 6.00%
10 Years is 9.70%
International shares had a stronger quarter compared to the Australian market with the MSCI World Index in Australian dollar terms rising 3.7%.
Global share markets rose during the September quarter (in local currency terms) led again by United States (US) technology stocks and the US market more generally. A major factor in this US leadership was continued growth in profits by US tech companies. For instance, video conferencing giant Zoom has raised its estimated 2020/21 financial year revenue growth to over 282%, reflecting the strength of the work-from-home dynamic across the world.
1 Year is 3.90%
5 Years is 10.00%
10 Years is 12.70%
The Australian bond market benchmark, the Bloomberg AusBond Composite Index, rose 1% during the September quarter. There were two main drivers behind the increase. First, we saw a further decline in credit spreads (the difference in yield between government and business bonds) during the quarter. Second, we saw bond prices pushed higher (and bond yields lower) by investors seeking safe, less risky, assets with the bulk of the return for government bonds coming during the month of September.
1 Year is 3.20%
5 Years is 4.50%
10 Years is 5.60%
The Cash benchmark, the Bloomberg AusBond Bank Bill Index, rose 0.025% during the September quarter.
Speculation intensified that the Reserve Bank of Australia would pass on another cut to interest rates in a bid to support the economy. It also announced plans to increase its purchasing of government bonds to bring the 3-year government bond yield closer to its cash rate target. These moves will likely see cash returns soften further in the near term.
1 Year is 0.60%
5 Years is 1.60%
10 Years is 2.60%
High Yielding Internet Savings Accounts
Financial Institution Interest Rate**
RaboDirect Bank 1.75% p.a.
ING Savings Maximiser 1.35% p.a.
Macquarie – Savings Account 1.35% p.a.
ME Bank Online Saver 1.20% p.a.
IMB Reward Saver 1.20% p.a.
Australian Unity – Active Saver 1.10% p.a
** Rates are subject to conditions and change. Rates are correct as at 18/12/2020.