2020 – a year in reflection as we look forward to 2021

A message from our CEO & Founder, Joseph Chou

For me, this is the time of the year when I like to do a stocktake and reflect on the past year both personally and professionally.

It’s incredible where we are at today compared to 7-9 months ago. We are so lucky to be here in Australia, where the Covid-19 response has been so proactive, and all Australians, Victorians in particular, have done such an excellent job and made so many sacrifices, in stopping the spread. There is certainly no place I’d rather be in the world right now, and I know many people the world around the world would agree.

From ‘gloom’ to property boom

In terms of the market, we are also in such a positive space compared to earlier in the year. While our business, along with many other Australian businesses and individuals, has been affected by the impact of Covid-19, the doom and gloom predictions from earlier months haven’t come to fruition.

With record low home loan rates now available, the government’s plan to roll back the responsible lending regulations and further extensions to the many grants and initiatives available to home buyers and investors, we are now seeing a surge in consumer confidence in the Australian property markets.

In fact, even during the most restrictive Covid-19 months, the major city markets experienced only a marginal decline, and according to the latest Corelogic data, have now returned to positive growth.

While consumer confidence is being reported across many institutions, for example, Westpac’s Time to buy a Dwelling index’ recently reached 8%, the highest record since November 2013 – we have also experienced this firsthand at Ironfish, with November being our busiest month of the year as many investors resume their investment plans.

And while there is still some global uncertainty in regards to Australia/China relations, on the other hand, we have also seen a return to stability in the US market, with the new US administration bringing some normality back to global politics.

For Australian property, the impact of lower immigration and international students poses some short term challenges, however, we are much closer to a Covid-19 vaccine now, and as this becomes available, we would expect a return to normality over the medium-to-longer term.


Progress is within reach

From an Ironfish point of view we have always advocated for investing as a long-term strategy to supplement super or other retirement income. With a long-term buy and hold strategy, market fluctuations within the year are less important than underlying fundamentals for growth over the long-term.

We also believe in our underlying mission of financial wellbeing more strongly than ever. The events of the year have proven that taking time to think about your financial future is so important. It has never been a better time to do a financial stocktake and prepare for the future. It’s easy to put it off, but you never know when a rainy day may eventuate.

The good news is financial progress is within the reach of anyone, with the right mindset, support team and strategy. This is something I learned, and my co-founders, Susanne Anderson and Grant Ryan, also learned very early on, and a big part of why we decided to establish Ironfish.

A wish for 2021

It has indeed been a year like no other – and I would like to take the opportunity to thank our customers, partners and staff for your support this year. We have done a lot of consolidation, preparation and planning this year on how to add further value to our community of investors in 2021.

I am an optimist. I always believe tomorrow will be better than today, and 2021 will be a better year for everyone. But it doesn’t come by chance, it comes by design. And we will continue to be here to help all our investors build a brighter future ahead.

On behalf of Grant, Susanne and the entire Ironfish team, we wish you all the best this holiday season and every good thing to come in the year ahead.

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