Inside Money

Business writer David Chaplin blogs on personal finance

Inside Money: High-gloss investment opportunities

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Photo / APN
Photo / APN

If you want to read a proper, glossy investment report check out the latest annual offering from the New Zealand Superannuation Fund (NZS).

This report has it all, from sweeping statements about NZS costs (64.5 basis points of fund assets in year to June 30, 2011, up 12.5 basis points compared to last year) to a dinky little graph illuminating the 'impact of risk on volatility of fund returns' and its exposure to the Polish Zloytch ($28.52 million).

Along the way you can find out where all the money is (well-diversified), why it moved to new premises (21 Queen St, Auckland), and how much NZS staff were paid (top-earner taking home over $700,000 in total remuneration in the 2010/11 year).

Elsewhere, the NZS recycling and rubbish reduction targets are discussed.

"As we have moved into new premises we will be conducting a waste audit which will establish a new baseline. In the new building we separate food/organic waste, recyclables such as glass, cans and certain types of plastic and landfill rubbish," the report states. "We already have some preliminary information which indicates that we produce close to 500kg of waste a month."

I know you're probably thinking 'that's a lot of crap' but I recommend the NZS report to all taxpayers. The NZS has gone to a lot of trouble to be transparent - have a look.

If, on the other hand, you prefer your high-gloss investment documents lighter on detail, answer 'yes' when the Orion Majestic saleswoman offers to send out a brochure.

The company that I spoke of in a previous blog finally came through with its mail-out to me this week.

Apparently operating as OLM Pty Ltd, its brochure is a masterwork in simplicity. All up there can't be more than about 200 words, including the address, slapped between large aspirational lifestyle pics (is that a high-class hooker stepping out of the red sports car?).

What words there are, ooze off the page.

"Past performance is the only guide in assessing investment," OLM claims, flouting conventional thinking on the matter.

"Is this just gambling?" the brochure asks. "You must treat the program as you would any business proposition."

The business proposition is software to help you punt on Australian horse races.
This is just gambling. But I bet, more people will be interested in reading about it than the NZS annual report.

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