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Tax credits being adopted, WiNZ and Tracker join SIP, Equitable's First Mortgage debenture, Trustees merge, One dividend only.

Sunday, April 19th 1998, 12:00AM

by Philip Macalister

Tax credits being adopted
Tower Retirement Investment and Equitable are two of the first life offices to say they intend adopting the new tax credit regime designed to mend some inequities in the law.
Equitable group general manager Philip Marwick says it is apparent that the administrative cost to elect will no doubt be considerable.
Under the regime (which is currently before Parliament) policyholders on tax rates of less than 33 per cent will be able to have the income on their investments taxed at their corresponding tax rate.
Currently life offices are taxed at 33 per cent on their income.

WiNZ and Tracker join SIP
AMP has included its passive funds WiNZ and Tracker into its Savings and Investment Portfolio (SIP) service.
SIP is AMP's flagship range of investments for retail investors. Originally Tracker, which is a passive New Zealand equity fund, and WiNZ, which tracks the MSCI, were established for wholesale customers.
By including the funds in the SIP portfolio AMP is also offering them with a regular contribution facility, plus they are available as either a unit trust or a superannuation fund.

Equitable First Mortgage debenture
Equitable will launch its First Mortgage Debenture product in early May that will predominantly have as its underlying security first mortgages over commercial, industrial and residential properties.
The fund will also be able to hold cash, and like Equitable's other products it will have an independent trustee.
The key feature of the debenture is that resident withholding tax is only required to be deducted, therefore it should appeal to tax payers on rates of less than 33c in the dollar.
The debenture will provide a fixed rate of return for the term invested and investors will be able to elect either accumulation, monthly or quarterly payments.
Equitable has established a special purpose company, Equitable Mortgages to run the business. This company is owned by Equitable Asset Management.

Trustees merge
Pyne Gould Corporation is to merge Perpetual Trust and Christchurch-based PGG Trust, which will have $5.5 billion in assets under administration, and be known as Perpetual Trust.
PGG general manager Stephen Eaton will head the combined organisation.
Pyne Gould Corporation bought Perpetual Trust from AMP in October 1996 with the intention of eventually merging it with PGG Trust, which it established in 1934. Perpetual Trust was established 124 years ago.
The head office of the merged entity will be in Christchurch. It is envisaged the merger will have little effect on staff numbers.

New retirement campaign
The Office of the Retirement Commissioner launched a two week television campaign over the weekend, urging New Zealanders to turn their tax cut into savings.
From 1 July this year, most New Zealand households will benefit from a tax cut.  For people with an annual income of $40,000, the tax cut will amount to around $20 extra income a week.
"By saving their tax cut dollars, New Zealanders will be contributing to a more comfortable retirement" Retirement commissioner Colin Blair says.
"Alternatively, the tax cuts can be used to accelerate debt repayment so that serious saving can begin sooner."
"By advertising now, we hope people will start thinking seriously about the value of putting their July tax cut towards starting or boosting their retirement savings plan," he says.

One dividend only this year
Fleming Overseas Investment Trust will only pay one dividend this year after reporting a 30.9 per cent fall in half-year earnings.
The British-based trust announced net earnings of £1.865m ($NZ5.595m) in the six months ended December 31, against £2.698m in the same period last year.
The fall was caused by paying interest on the £80m floating rate note issued in June. Because of the interest costs, up from £12,000 to £3.2m, only one dividend would be paid.
Fleming's gross return rose 53.1% to £8.313m, while tax fell 6.1% to £1.009m. The net asset value a share rose from 386.8p to 433.5p (NZ1302c).

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