Office News

Happy International Women’s Day

Happy International Women’s Day!

Whilst we celebrate all the amazing women who work at and with Pekada, this day is more about reflection of what actionable change we have and can make in our little microcosm of the world to improve equity.

The theme of this year’s IWD is DigitALL: Innovation and technology for gender equality.

For our clients, we have made a significant investment in technology that attempts to address some of the inherent gender based bias that exists in our industry, and breakdown the barriers that women can face when engaging with financial services.

For our team, the use of tech to allow full remote work and a 4 day work week are core to our employee offering no matter the gender or lifestage.

We recognize that the above are not point in time solutions, but ongoing and constant iterations to improve economic gender equality in the places we have a direct influence.


For more details and insights:





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Pekada team news – February 2023

Here’s what has been happening with the Pekada team.


Getting out from behind our screens

The team finished up 2022 with a break from Zoom calls for an in-person Christmas lunch at Yering Station in the Yarra Valley.

While the weather attempted to dampen the experience, 7 out of 7 team members gave it a thumbs up. Amazing views and venue.


Pete back studying

Pete is back studying, and this time he is going deeper into the investment sphere to get his Certified Investment Management Analyst (CIMA) qualification.

He has ticked off the first stage with the Investment Management Analyst Certificate and now moves on to the next step. If he looks weary, you may attribute that to late-night study sessions in preparation for the final certification exam.


Family life a reminding us that they grow up so fast

Rhiannon and Pete are navigating a new schedule this year, with Remy starting primary school. Time sure does fly, and we can’t believe how quickly they grow up.

Week one report card included cuteness overload, new friends, a lot of fun, calendar confusion, smiles and a few tears (mainly gushing parents). A+.








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The Office – December 2021

The Pekada team were not about to let the pandemic keep us down and have been busy.

  • Rhiannon goes back to school: The financial planning profession’s updated code of ethics requires financial advisers to complete a Financial Adviser Standards and Ethics Authority approved degree by 2026 to continue working in the sector. All of the advisers at Pekada are already degree qualified and only need to complete a new ethics subject. Rhiannon has jumped in head first by doing the Deakin intensive structure. We hear that “intensive” is an appropriate adjective for the course and plenty of robust discussions.  
  • We’re back in the office: I don’t know about you, but while Zoom has been a great tool to enable us to connect during the various lockdowns, there is nothing like face-to-face. Good news. The Pekada advisers are back in the office and are available for in-person meetings. If Zoom is still your preference, then no worries at all, as the digital meeting format will continue to be available.
  • Upping our knowledge and skills on behavioural finance: We are committed to continuing to improve skills, and this has recently taken our team on the journey through the world of behavioural finance. Our advice team have all completed an academy immersing themselves in “Values-Based Advice”. It is such an exciting journey, which we are confident will help us support our clients to live richly. To assist us in delivering this to our clients, we have partnered with advice tech business Lumiant, who are doing some pretty amazing things. Lumiant’s philosophy aligns with how we think about financial advice. “Lumiant’s unique process helps clients articulate what really matters to them, so together we can identify priorities, shape strategies and drive action to ensure they live their best lives.” We look forward to bringing this to you in 2022. 
  • A look at the Firetrail Absolute Return Strategy: We have got some feedback that managed investments can sometimes be a little confusing, with one client aptly describing them as a bit like a “black box”. To try and demystify these, we are planning to do regular interviews with fund managers and hear straight from the horse’s mouth about their strategies. So the first cab off the rank is Firetrail investments, with Investment Director Kyle Macintyre talking through their Firetrail Absolute Return Strategy. Video ca be viewed via this link. Being the first attempt, style points are not where we want them to be–but Pete is keen to know if we are on the right track with this type of content. Let him know via email here.



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Is this a scam?

New data released

Naturally, people aspire to get the most out of their investments, especially if a great opportunity is presented by a ‘trusted’ organisation. Unfortunately, however, investment scams occur more often than you may think, highlighting the risk both self-directed investors and SMSF trustees may potentially face when seeking new investment opportunities. 

New data released from Scamwatch Australia has reinforced the sophistication and the rapidly growing number of scams each year in Australia – which has caused a loss of over $851 million* in total in 2020 – $328 million of which related to investment scams. Therefore, it is extremely important for you to remain vigilant and reach out to me, your trusted SMSF professional, before investing your retirement savings in a new product or service.  


What does the data reported to Scamwatch Australia tell us? 

  • During 2020, the average monetary value lost to scams has increased by 23%. Scammers have become more sophisticated in their approach, claiming to be from well-known investment organisations or government bodies, with the aim of extracting personal information from an individual.
  • Investment scams have caused the most financial harm to the Australian population throughout 2020, resulting in $328 million lost. Advancements in both technology and software design allow scammers to recreate websites to look identical to an actual organisation’s site, meaning it is becoming increasingly difficult to identify what is a scam and what isn’t.
  • Older Australians (65+) are often more at risk of being approached by scammers as they perceive this particular age group to have more accumulated wealth. 
  • The top contact methods used by scammers include phone (47.7%), email (22%), text message (15%), internet (6.3%) and social networking (4.5%)*. Scammers will often inject a sense of urgency into their messaging, propose threats (particularly with tax scams), and request personal and banking information. 


What should you do if you suspect a scam?

If someone attempts to scam you, there are several things you can do: 

  • Report the scam to Scamwatch Australia – or ReportCyber – Report | immediately.
  • Do not provide any personal information that will allow a scammer to impersonate and retrieve your funds. 
  • Do not click on links you have received via text or email that have a substantial number of letters and numbers. 
  • If you have lost money to a scam, contact your financial institution immediately. 
  • If you have provided personal information and you are concerned your identity may be compromised, you can contact IDCARE for free support on 1800 595 160.
  • Consider contacting the organisation the suspected scammer claims to work for – the organisation may be able to confirm your suspicions.

If you have been scammed or believe you have been scammed, you shouldn’t feel embarrassed or ashamed. Financial scams are now crimes that are regularly occurring – many scams are very sophisticated and professional, and very experienced investors have lost money to scams. It is becoming increasingly important to discuss the risk of scams with family, friends, and peers.


How can we help?

If you need assistance with identifying whether you are being approached by a scammer, please feel free to give us a call to discuss in more detail. We are here to support you, and it’s essential that we start the conversation as scamming is a continuous risk in our technologically advanced world.



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After having many discussions this week with people in my age group about the Covid vaccine’s available to us, it got me thinking about the cognitive and behavioural biases that we all have – and how they affect our overall decision making. Whilst we may think of ourselves as rational, in the complex world of information we live in we are much more likely to rely and use mental shortcuts to make decisions.

Of particular interest to me is how these affect the financial and investment choices we make.

Having a solid self-awareness of your own biases can assist you to make better decisions – and from an investing perspective this is critical to ensuring you reach your long term financial goals. Below we will outline a few common biases and give some examples of how they play out in an investment sense.
We would also love to hear of any biases you may have identified in yourself after reading this article!


Confirmation Bias

Investors will more often notice and look for information and evidence that confirms their existing beliefs, at the expense of evidence that challenges or goes against those beliefs. Human beings tend to avoid the discomfort when information conflicts with current beliefs or perceptions.

This plays out in the investment world in that you may ignore information conflicts with your previously held belief – which if not ignored may present an opportunity or help you prevent losses.


Anchoring bias

This is the tendency to rely to heavily (or anchor to) a piece of historical information when making an investment decision. The brain then makes adjustments based on this anchor, which can adversely affect your ability to make sound decisions.

The most common example of this is anchoring to a past share price, irrespective of the companies future outlook.


Narrative Bias

This is the tendency to interpret information as part of a larger narrative or story, sometimes at the expense of facts.

What we have seen a lot in the last 12 months is investors abandoning fundamentals for a great story. While these stories can be very compelling, we cannot be blinded by this and need to consider the whole picture of an investment.


Overconfidence Bias

The Dunning-Kruger effect – when people overestimate their own abilities, believing they are smarter or more informed then they really are.

Investors with this bias tend to underestimate the risks/overestimate the returns of a particular investment. They also tend to excessively trade, thinking that they have better information than the broader market.



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Pekada’s favourite things – Christmas 2020

As always, the Pekada team is back to bring you their favourite things for Christmas 2020. 2020 has been a year like no other and a lot of the team’s choices reflect what has gone on this year. Let us know if you like any of the choices or what you are looking out for under the tree this year!


Stocking stuffers (under $25)

Customized cup is a no brainer for a personalised present with some meaning to it (Mardy): Zazzle – Customised Cup


Non Wines, as someone who doesn’t drink alcohol, these up the fancy factor at a dinner party so you don’t feel left out! (Rhiannon) – Non Wines


Throw Throw Burrito Dodgeball Card Game – Always good to throw a Burrito at someone just for fun (Kirsty) – Throw Throw Burrito Game


Succulent of some sort in a nice pot – a real winner with more working from home and can brighten up the desk space. Also from experience very easy to maintain and keep alive! (Pete)- 130mm Ceramic Bowl Succulent Garden | Bunnings Warehouse


Some scented candles to spruce up the home when family is around (Manu) – Ecoya Candle @ Myer


I have just started getting back into golf and I’m not that good so a new pack of balls to replace all the ones I’ve lost would be great (Zac) – Srixon golf balls @ Drummond Golf


For me a voucher to spend on natural and eco-friendly products from Nourished Life would float my boat.  Can’t go past a new lipstick! (Sarah) – Nourished Life



When you are trying to impress (Up to $200)

Copy of Cyberpunk 2077 which is one of the most anticipated and hyped games of this year (Mardy) – Cyberpunk Game


Microneedling Kit – I got into at home microneedling while in lockdown and love the results! (Rhiannon) – Microneedling Kit @ Adore Beauty


Makita 18V Line Trimmer – I really need to up my lawn edging game (Kirsty) – Makita Line Trimmer @ Bunnings


Shure Aonic 215 Sound Isolating Earphones w/ Universal Cable (Clear) – if ever there was a year for good corded headphones then this is the year. 2021 promises to be full of Zoom calls and from experience you want a corded pair to avoid lag and charging issues. (Pete) – Shure earphones @ Store DJ


A simple yet beautiful Tiffany & Co. Necklace (Manu) – Tiffany & Co Bean Design Necklace


Music on the go with an Ultimate Ears BOOM speaker.  The joy of music wherever you are! (Sarah) – Ultimate Ears Website


A good food gift card to use at any of Melbourne’s amazing restaurants, that was one of the main things I missed in lockdown was heading out to a restaurant with friends so this will help make up for lost time (Zac) – Good Food Gift Card



Sky is the limit (imagining we just won lotto and price is not a consideration!)


A classic Rolex DateJust 36 (Mardy) – Rolex DateJust 36 Watch


Sal Salis Resort – This has been on my bucket list for over 10 years and this year has taught me not to kick the can down the road anymore (Rhiannon) – Sal Salis Resort


I would love to take my kids and family on a 5 star Disneyland holiday (Kirsty) – Disneyland Holiday Tours


Somewhere I’ve always wanted to visit with the family – the great barrier reef (Manu) – Great Barrier Reef


Covid has me thinking of spending more time in Victoria, so a weekend away with dinner & matched wines (of course) at Brae. You can stay next door to the restaurant at the guest suites which look amazing, and save you having to travel with a full belly! (Pete) – & Brae Guest Suites (


A beachside holiday home in Byron Bay to share with friends and family for me please.  If there’s no limit a Yoga/Dance studio too! (Sarah) – Visit Byron Bay


Provided America gets COVID under control… Courtside seats to the NBA to see Dallas Mavericks vs LA Lakers. Would be amazing to see the old goat (Lebron) vs the new goat (Luka) in action (Zac)


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The Office (Pekada edition) – November 2020

While the physical office locations have been gathering dust, the Pekada team has been keeping busy working from home. While absence does make the heart grow fonder, I am pleased to report that our regular virtual morning tea is going to be replaced with a very analogue in-person lunch next Thursday. Zac wasted no time after Dan Andrews announced an easing of restrictions to secure our team Christmas Party lunch down in what he describes as God’s Country (Mornington Peninsula) at Ten Minutes By Tractor. Very excited to get the band back together after not being in the office since March, and hope you understand us taking the afternoon out of the office.

  • Pekada’s favourite things of 2020 is worth checking out if you are stuck for gift ideas. The options where money is not an issue really highlight how much the team love to travel. Hopefully this is back on the cards soon!
  • Pete has been participating in the “Adviser Wellness Survey” run by Deakin University and Dr Adam Fraser, a peak performance researcher. This is the first-ever national wellbeing and mental health study for financial advisers. His thoughts and summary the research findings to follow in the next edition.
  • Work from home has been the norm this year and well and truly embraced by the Pekada team. I feel the next iteration of this will be a hybrid of the physical office and “work from anywhere”. So next time you are on a video call with one of the team pay attention to the background. That beachside, outback or in Mardy’s case aurora borealis background may be the real deal! In terms of our team, at this stage (all things going well) we will return to the office in the new year. Not sure what this looks like exactly, but we will be sure to keep you informed.
  • Zac has been putting the hard work nurturing his facial hair for Movember. It is his best effort yet, which makes me think he has a secret weapon hair growth formula.
    • A pretty poor attempt, even with the Vitamins, apologies to anyone who may have had a zoom call with me and has had to look at it! – Zac


  • In case anyone was wondering whether those seedlings planted during lockdown have progressed. It was looking pretty lush prior to harvesting this week!

how it started : how it’s going



  • Zac and Pete reached the 100 episode milestone for The Wealth Collective Podcast, and took the opportunity to record the episode in person (safe distancing of course).



  • The Pekada team participated in the JPMorgan Corporate Challenge which was a virtual event this year. Lots of fun in spite of a very buggy app for us iPhone users. Manu and Mardy swear it was fine on Android, but we will never know for sure. The team got moving with either a walk, jog, or run fpr the same Corporate Challenge distance that has been used since the 1977 debut in Central Park– 3.5 miles or 5.6327 kilometers. To confirm we completed this successfully, we have “finisher” t-shirts as proof and look pretty cool. haha!



Until next time!

-The Pekada team





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Buy Victorian – By Pekada

Victoria is heading into stage four lockdown which will hurt a lot of businesses greatly. We are proud Melbournian’s and Victorian’s at Pekada and want to try and spread the word out about great Victorian businesses that are still trading during this time and we would love your help! If there are any businesses that you love what they are doing during lockdown, shoot us an email and we will add them to this list!


Zac: I, like many others, love Melbourne’s many great restaurants and one of the things I have missed the most during lockdown is being able to go out and visit them but during this a new business has started called Providoor, which has heaps of Melbourne’s great restaurants, all on the one sight and they deliver straight to your door and only a little bit of prep work is required to have restaurant quality food in your own home (tipo 00’s pasta is insane) –


Another of the things I am missing during lockdown is been able to go and grab a coffee as easily as before. I’m currently living down the Mornington Peninsula and have loved the beans from Commonfolk Coffee, can order online and get delivered. I am particularly enjoying the BRRR blend at the moment –


One of Australia’s best chef Ben Shewry from Attica is running a soup project where he is selling different soups and using money from that to feed some of the hospitality workers who have been left out of work due to the pandemic but are not entitled to any government benefits –


Following on from restaurants doing good things, Good Gnocchi in Carlton are giving away free spaghetti to people who are struggling financially during COVID, so they are a great takeaway option to continue to support their amazing work –


Rhiannon: I have used Melbourne online paint company Tint during lockdown, was so easy and quick to get samples delivered (as in I ordered in the morning and they arrived that afternoon), and then the paint and full paint kit. Plus for a beginner painter like me their How to guide was really  helpful! Paint was also 99% VOC free so no overwhelming paint smells and kids could sleep in the room that night no problems. –


Pete: I am a big fan of Naked Wines, good wine selection from local producers which aren’t part of the big companies. Feel good vino! –


This one is not a business, but do yourself a favour and add a little variety to your viewing schedule with an online pass to MIFF 68 1/2 – a digital film festival for 2020. We have been warned that there is some content which is not PG13 friendly, so perhaps tuck the kids into bed early! –


As we said at the start, please let us know of any you like and we will add them to the list!



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The Office – August 2020

The Pekada team, like many others, is into their fifth month of working from home and that has led to some new hobbies in between their video calls. Some are getting creative through painting and cooking whilst others are trying to grow their own fruit and vegetables and work on their jump shot. 

Rhiannon got creative and was able to paint and sticker Remy and Mette’s rooms and it looks great! The paint was from Melbourne company Tint and the stickers from Blond + Noir and Olive et Oriel


Pete and Zac have started to try and live off the land and eliminate a few extra trips to the supermarket by growing their own vegetables. Stay tuned for next edition of The Office to see how they go!


Pete is also attempting to assemble a basketball ring to work on his jump shot in the backyard. Take note of the business up the top, comfort down below outfit. Perfect for video calls. 

Also, you will note the patchy state of the lawn behind him. Help! Any lawn gurus out there, please send Pete some tips.


Jackie has been very busy in the kitchen during the break, learning many new dishes. One of them pictured below!


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The Office – July 2020

Another few months have passed since we last spoke and the Pekada team, like most other businesses, have got used to the new norm that is working from home. For some in the team, that home has changed location and for others, staying from home and in lockdown has lead to some new hobbies which you will see below.


Rhiannon & Pete move to the burbs!

A big congratulations to Rhiannon and Pete have traded in the balcony for the backyard and have moved out to the suburbs! Remy and Mette are said to be pretty happy with the cubby house and sandpit in the backyard as well.


New lockdown hobbies

Been stuck inside for prolonged periods of time has lead a lot of people to try and take on new skills during this isolation period, the main one that is a theme throughout the Pekada office has been cooking. Zac inspired by Masterchef (please email him to discuss if you’re also a fan), had a go at a Victoria sponge and made his own pasta with fresh truffle over the top whilst Kirsty’s daughter Ruby created an amazing breakfast that wouldn’t look out of place in any of Melbourne’s cafes, amazing work from someone who is only 13! Pete and Rhiannon’s son Remy also tried his hand at making cupcake’s for the first time, check out the mess below!

If you’ve got any good recipe’s or photo’s of your own, be sure to send them in. Zac needs all the help and inspiration he can get!



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