The good times roll

Sunday 4 April 2004

This year has begun as last year ended; the good times continue to roll.

By The Landlord

In the first quarter of the year, an investor with a balanced portfolio - as used by the average pension fund - would have enjoyed a gain of 2.8 per cent before tax and fees.

The return for the 12 months to the end of March - 15.2 per cent - appears the best for some time, although, looking back over three years, most portfolios will still be underwater after fees and tax.

As the graph shows, each of the major investment classes made a positive contribution this quarter.

Highlights included the Japanese market, which stormed away, rising 14.4 per cent on confidence that deflation is a thing of the past and renewed hope that corporate Japan is now managed for shareholders ahead of anyone else.

The global listed property index rose 11 per cent in the three months as investors, particularly in the US and Europe, aggressively chased yield. That should please the NZ Superannuation Fund, which is putting some money into listed property.

In contrast, the New Zealand listed property index rose only 2 per cent in capital terms, though it now offers one of the developed world's highest yields on securitised property.

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