Family Office Insights

Family Office Insights provides detailed analysis, expert opinion, in-depth coverage, and top stories of family offices in South Africa and around the world.

Massing of Estates

Massing of estates is a useful mechanism of transfer of family wealth with many potential benefits for a family office.

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Temperament is more important than intellect

Successful long-term investors have the ability to keep calm and remain level-headed when the investment environment around them turns volatile, as is often the case with public markets.

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Adding and removing beneficiaries from a trust

The laws governing trusts and tax should be considered carefully before any change is enacted, to ensure that such an amendment is legally binding and does not trigger unexpected capital gains or transfer duty.

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Investment lessons from Warren Buffett's hedge fund bet

Even though no investment can escape short-term market turbulence, Warren Buffett's hedge fund bet showed low-cost index funds remain an excellent vehicle for sustained long-term investment gains.

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Investing during times of war

When news headlines highlight tales of war and the accompanying death and destruction, investors tend to become on edge and revert to short-term thinking, perhaps losing perspective on their long-term investment goals. It is important for investors to consider that there have been many times historically when markets performed well during times of armed conflicts.

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Emerging markets power long-term global growth

The expansion of emerging market investment opportunities available to global investors makes this asset class a key component of a diversified family office portfolio that aims for consistent compounding of capital over multiple generations.

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Beware of the alter ego trust

All too often trustees of family trusts, many times dishonestly but also frequently ignorantly, treat the property of the family trust as if it is their own personal property and use the trust essentially as their alter ego, to the detriment of the legitimate beneficiaries of that trust.

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Investment lessons from the S&P 500 Index's lost decade

Family offices should take a long-term perspective towards asset allocation and should never be dependent on the short-term performance of one market. Shifting perspective to longer time frames will increase the likelihood of achieving multi-generation investment goals.

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Situs taxes and international investments

Investors who own United Kingdom and/or United States assets, could be liable for various taxes in these jurisdictions that will have a significant impact on long-term investment outcomes, and it is therefore critical to receive expert advice when structuring international wealth.

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How many trusts are enough?

Each family is unique and will require an individually designed family office to serve their distinctive aspirations and financial needs. Families should plan carefully to ensure that the inheritance structure does not end up with unnecessary trusts that will complicate the management of family wealth.

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Structured products in family office wealth management

Structured products have many benefits including the provision of capital protection, delivering predictable results and offering flexible investment solutions.

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The role of the independent trustee

The newly introduced requirement for all family business trusts to appoint at least one independent trustee, will go a long way to counter the abuse and misuse of trusts, to protect trust beneficiaries, as well as provide much needed comfort to third parties and creditors that transact with trusts.

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Investing in a low interest rate world

Near-zero interest rates across the developed world are a puzzling issue for long-term investors to understand and navigate. Sufficient diversification across four to six asset classes and geographies with appropriate allocation to growth securities will be critical to achieving longer-term financial success.

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Benefits of an offshore investment structure

A well-structured and administrated offshore investment structure will allow a family to diversify risk across geographies and should ensure a family maintains its wealth for many generations.

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Investment lessons from Yale University endowment

The Yale University endowment has become the best performing endowment fund among its peers. David Swensen, the Chief Investment Officer of the university, developed a robust investment process that can also be applied to family office investments.

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Tax implications of a loan to a South African trust

Although the introduction of section 7C of the Income Tax Act complicates the use of trusts in family office structures, their unique characteristics will ensure that they remain relevant for most families dealing with the challenge of managing multi-generational wealth.

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Family Office: A brief history

The family office has become a financial phenomenon over the last few decades. To truly understand the concept, it is worth exploring its origin and to follow its development to an established phenomenon of modern finance.

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Mosaic Family Office is the leading provider of multi-family office services in South Africa.

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