Read Mary's current Herald column on-line now, or search the archives for previous subjects in her Herald and syndicated columns.
The following is a selection of articles mainly from January 2005 to the present. To explore this topic in more depth and access earlier columns, please use the search box.
Syndicated column 6 October 2012 - Rental property beats shares - or does it?
At first it looked as if a recent article in the Reserve Bank Bulletin might help with the perennial question: Is it better to invest in property or shares? But no such luck!View - It's FREE!
Syndicated column 8 September 2012 - Risk is not a dirty word
A man on the radio the other day was talking about risk, and how we've become so scared about our children's safety that we don't let them climb trees. The kids lose out. It's similar with investments. Many New Zealanders seem to be too scared of riskier investments, and they too lose from that fear.View - It's FREE!
NZ Herald 4 August 2012
This week we are publishing the second excerpt from a small book Mary Holm has written for the Reserve Bank called "Upside, downside: A guide to risk for savers and investors". It will be given away free to the public in September. This column will tell you how to get a copy then. Today we look at examples of risky investor behaviour. The normal Q&A column will resume next week.View - It's FREE!
Syndicated column 7 April 2012 - Slow and steady not always the way to win
Slow and steady isn't always best when it comes to regular investing. We'll look at making annual investments, to keep it simple. But the same principle applies to contributing to KiwiSaver or other investments in which you make more frequent deposits of the same amount.View - It's FREE!
NZ Herald 26 November 2011
Q&As: Are shares still the best long-term investment, despite recent results?
NZ Herald 3 September 2011
Q&As: Are NZ banks really safe, given what happened in the Great Depression?
NZ Herald 27 August 2011
Q&As: Fears about the safety of banks unfounded
Syndicated column 13 August 2011 - Watched KiwiSaver funds boils too much
The internet can be a curse when it comes to long-term investments such as KiwiSaver. With many providers, you can log in and check your account balance daily. But while a watched pot might never boil, a watched KiwiSaver account can boil too much - especially at times like these.View - It's FREE!
NZ Herald 13 August 2011
Q&As: Should reader move to lower-risk KiwiSaver fund? Putting share plunge in perspective
NZ Herald 25 June 2011
Q&As: Should KiwiSaver member move to a provider with better investment performance?
Syndicated column 21 May 2011 - Getting back in balance
Investment markets have been particularly turbulent in recent years. Chances are, therefore, that your spread of investments - over property, shares, bonds, term deposits and so on - has changed without your intending that to happen.View - It's FREE!
NZ Herald 9 October 2010
Q&As: Can a reader foresee gold and silver prices, and foreign exchange rates? Time will tell.
NZ Herald 18 September 2010
Q&As: The "I can't afford it" excuse for not joining KiwiSaver just went out the window - plus other points about kids and KiwiSaver
Syndicated column 8 May 2010 - Set and forget KiwiSaver funds a great choice for many
I'm not really interested in what happens under the bonnet of my car, as long as it goes. In much the same way many people are not interested in what happens to their KiwiSaver accounts, as long as they grow.View - It's FREE!
NZ Herald 1 May 2010
Q&As: Real estate agent objects to my suggesting people negotiate with agents
NZ Herald 24 April 2010
Q&As: Retiree stuck with a property investment that's gone wrong should sell her house and the rental
Syndicated column 10 April 2010 - Change KiwiSaver default funds - but educate too
All the wrong people are ending up in KiwiSaver default funds - or are they? That depends on their financial knowledge, temperament and home ownership plans.View - It's FREE!
Syndicated column 27 March 2010 - Wanted: better insurance against outliving our savings
Imagine you're heading into retirement. You'll get NZ Super, but you also have savings in KiwiSaver or elsewhere. You would like to spend that money over the rest of your life and leave the house to the kids. But - not knowing how long you will live - how can you decide how much to spend each year?View - It's FREE!
NZ Herald 20 February 2010
Q&As: Paying off mortgage - and getting rid of badly undiversified portfolio - are two great ideas
NZ Herald 13 February 2010
Q&As: Some active share funds will do better than passive index funds, but it's impossible to predict which ones
NZ Herald 30 January 2010
Q&As: Investing doesn't have to be a part-time job. There's still time for novel reading.
NZ Herald 12 December 2009
Q&As: Which investment advisers charge fees - and why that is a good start
WHICH ASSETS ARE FOR YOU?
This week, Mary Holm's Q&A column is replaced by an excerpt from her latest book, "The Complete KiwiSaver". The principles she discusses here apply not just to KiwiSaver but to investing in general. Her Q&A column will resume next week.View - It's FREE!
NZ Herald June 27 09
Q&As: Many reasons why repaying home mortgage is better than investing in a rental property
NZ Herald June 20 2009
Q&As: No use crying over split milk: Investor can still make use of 10-year rule
NZ Herald June 13 2009
Q&As: Another - much happier - take on being a landlord, compared with last week
NZ Herald April 11 2009
Q&As: Tips on how to ease back into investing in share funds.
Syndicated column March 7 2009 - When is 'a bird in the hand' better?
They are two perplexing questions that arise every now and then. One might apply when you are offered money or are selling something. Should you accept a certain amount now or more later? The other might apply when you are buying something. Should you pay a certain amount now or more later?View - It's FREE!