Issue 42: Is it back to the roaring ’20s again?

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Issue 42: Is it back to the roaring ’20s again?

The Roaring ’20s, and I’m talking the 1920s, was a decade of economic growth and widespread prosperity. It followed the ‘Spanish Flu Pandemic’ which lasted two years, over a number of waves between February 1918 to and April 1920. Sound familiar? 

The decade following was a period of strong economic growth and technological change. Most of us will not remember the 1920s and many companies and businesses operating now, did not exist back then. So, when the opportunity was presented to talk with one that has operated since the ’20s, it was too good to refuse.

Whitefield Industrials is an ASX Listed Investment Company (LIC) which trades under ticker code WHF. The company has continuously operated since March 1923. It is one of the longest continuously operating investment funds of any type in Australia.

Over the century since the company’s formation many investment funds have come and gone, yet Whitefield has survived and grown.

I asked Angus Gluskie, the Managing Director at Whitefield, for some insights into the company’s long history, for some contrasts between the past and the modern investment world as well as how Whitefield’s investors have benefited from the company’s consistency, longevity and long-term investing mind set. If you read last month’s article, which contained an illustration of compounding, this last point is an example of it in practice.

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Disclaimer: The information contained in this document is provided for educational purposes only, is general in nature and is prepared without taking into account particular objective, financial circumstances, legal and tax issues and needs. The information provided in this article is not a substitute for legal, tax and financial product advice. Before making any decision based on this information, you should assess its relevance to your individual circumstances. While SMSF Association believes that the information provided in this article is accurate, no warranty is given as to its accuracy and persons who rely on this information do so at their own risk. The information provided in this bulletin is not considered financial product advice for the purposes of the Corporations Act 2001.

Ian Irvine - Guest Contributor

Ian has been a keen investor for over 40 years and can draw on his experiences from both investing on his own behalf and also having worked in financial services for more than 30 years. Over this time, he has seen many changes that impact investors’ attitudes to in what and how they invest.

He started his career in what is now referred to as fast moving consumer goods (FMCG) or grocery, working for an Australian margarine manufacturer. In 1986, he was recruited to Westpac around the time of deregulation of the sector, where he spent 10 years before taking a role at AMP and then with ASX for 14 years up to the end of 2017. He continues to be involved with ASX; working on their educational programs.

In 1996, he and his wife established their own SMSF and again the experience and lessons learned regarding managing an SMSF over the years have provided him with many insights and ideas. He enjoys sharing these with others where these are helpful and always suggest that if an investor or SMSF trustee is unsure, that they should seek appropriate advice from a licenced professional.

Ian holds a B. Com (UNSW), and lives in Sydney and enjoys travelling to and meeting investors and SMSF trustee at the educational events with which he has involvement with from time to time.