Property

INVESTMENT 101

Motley Fool: It's not just about what a company does, but what it has

Scott Phillips In recent weeks, we've been looking at some of the attributes of a great company, on the premise that the better the business, the greater our chance of investment success.

THE MOTLEY FOOL

Motley Fool: never buy from private equity

Myer's share price has never reached the IPO height.

Scott Phillips Any time you read "accepted wisdom", you should ask yourself whether that's simply code for "I just use the same tired cliches as everyone else".

QUIRKY INVESTMENTS

Arthur Fleischmann sculptures for sale after decades in storage

Arthur Fleischmann's Spring. Estimates $2000-$3000.

James Cockington Sculptor Arthur Fleischmann spent a productive 10 years in Sydney, but his works from this period were kept in storage for half a century, and will now be sold.

BANKS

Big bank 'dividend trade' far from over, analysts say

Most investors and super fund members own shares in the Big 4 banks.

John Collett Increasing bad debt provisions, dividends under threat and falling share prices are giving long-term big-bank shareholders pause to think.

THE HONEST BROKER

When 'defensive' assets turn dangerous

Infrastructure stocks such as Sydney Airport have bubbly valuations as investors look for safe havens.

Marcus Padley At some price every stock becomes dangerous, even so-called defensive assets such as Transurban and Sydney Airport.

INTELLIGENT INVESTOR

Australia's other great duopoly is literally pathological – Sonic and Primary

Graham Witcomb There's Coles and Woolies, Qantas and Virgin, but the new duopoly in town is Primary Health Care and Sonic Healthcare.

ASK NOEL

Are volatile shares worth the pain?

Keep in mind that it's normal to have four negative years out of every 10 if you are investing in the sharemarket.

Noel Whittaker A reader asks Noel Whittaker how dividend income overcomes the volatility of shares.

QUIRKY INVESTMENTS

The number plates that are worth more than cars

James Cockington There are people driving around today with number plates worth more than their cars.

Five things to know from Warren Buffett's letter to investors

Over the past five decades, he has built the Omaha, Nebraska-based company into a sprawling enterprise with a stock portfolio valued at more than $US110 billion and interests in insurance, energy, manufacturing, media, retail and transportation.

Jessica Sier Investing sage Warren Buffett has delivered his annual letter to Berkshire Hathaway shareholders; those fortunate holders of the $US200,000 stock.

INVESTMENT 101

Motley Fool: The beauty of dividends

Dividends are like turbocharged bank interest.

Scott Phillips Have you ever wondered why so many investors are enamoured with dividends?

BOURIS ON MONEY

Mark Bouris on investing in volatile times

Mark Bouris Here we go again. Another year, another series of stories about world markets, Chinese economic growth and the ASX.

INVESTMENT 101

Investment 101: what is 'asset allocation' anyway?

Asset allocation is compiling an investment portfolio that suits your investment goals - not putting all your eggs in one basket. Illustration: Michael Mucci

Scott Phillips The first in our new series for beginner investors, from Scott Phillips at The Motley Fool.

EDUCATION

How to save for your kids' education

Marcelle Gomez and her husband Christian are saving so they have options when 15-month-old Cruz hits high school.

John Collett Education costs are rising faster than inflation, so if you want choices about schools for your children, you need to plan ahead.

MIND OVER MONEY

Acorns turns your spare change into an investment portfolio

Acorns Australia managing director George Lucas says the acorns name resonates in Europe and the English speaking world, but not in South America or Asia.

Caitlin Fitzsimmons A new app is launching in Australia that will take a few cents here and a few dollars there and invest it in exchange traded funds on your behalf.

INSIGHT

Economists tip rental growth to remain soft in 2016

The balance of power is slipping from landlords to tenants as a glut of new apartments come onto the market.

Clancy Yeates Landlords have long held the upper hand in the rental markets in Australia's biggest cities, but there are signs that power is receding in 2016.

QUIRKY INVESTMENTS

Artist Angus O'Callaghan finally discovered at the age of 91

Melbourne photographer Angus O'Callaghan with his camera.

James Cockington Serendipity led to the discovery of photographer Angus O'Callaghan and the success of his 1960s photographs of Melbourne.

THE MOTLEY FOOL

How to avoid investing in the next Dick Smith

With disappointing Christmas sales, Dick Smith felt the crunch in the new year.

Scott Phillips Some simple rules could keep you out of trouble.

MIND OVER MONEY

What The Big Short movie can teach ordinary people

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Caitlin Fitzsimmons It's exciting watching the traders short the US mortgage market before the global financial crisis, but it's not something the rest of us can emulate.

QUIRKY INVESTMENTS

The fabulous estate of a late opal miner and inventor

A large Cloisonne Heavenly Lion, or Fu Dog, from the Qing Dynasty in China. Estimated auction price $30,000-50,000.

James Cockington John Wolfe St Albans, of Adelaide, donated some amazing items to public museums during his lifetime, but still left behind a shipping container of fabulous treasures when he died.

WELL HEELED

Tackle suffering up front when setting goals

Melissa Browne Are we destined not to change or can we salvage our goals made for 2016? The short answer is yes and no.