Book Review and Give away: Pensions for Palookas

Publisher: Reach publishers; Retail price: R300 (Takealot), US$19.99 (Amazon)

Publisher: Reach publishers; Retail price: R300 (Takealot), US$19.99 (Amazon)

Published Jul 23, 2023


There have been some good books published in the last few years on the subject of retirement: saving for retirement in your working years and then living off your savings once you’ve stopped working. Last week’s review, The comprehensive Ultimate Guide to Retirement in South Africa, by Bruce Cameron and Wouter Fourie, is a case in point.

But former Personal Finance Editor Martin Hesse, who reviewed Pensions for Palookas by regular contributor Brett Ladouce in the now discontinued Personal Finance Magazine earlier this year, wrote that this book is more focused: ‘’It looks at retirement funds in particular and answers important questions that anyone saving in a retirement fund should know, such as “What happens to my retirement savings on divorce?” and “How does tax affect my retirement savings?” And because such a large proportion of working South Africans belong to a retirement fund, including those just out of school, its reach is broader and, as such, it fills a significant gap.”

Hesse further wrote: “Retirement funds, which comprise pension, provident, preservation and retirement annuity funds, have specific legal characteristics, as set out in the Pension Funds Act and related legislation. They enjoy far greater protection under the law than other types of investments, plus they offer members unique benefits, such as the tax deductibility of contributions.

In a series of chapters tackling common questions on retirement funds, Ladoucé uses language that is accessible to the everyday reader, explaining legal concepts and terms where necessary and providing tables and graphs to substantiate his answers. The delightful illustrations are by Ladoucé’s teenage son Micah.”

Brett Ladoucé is an Advocate of the High Court and one of the country’s leading pension lawyers. He has over 20 years of experience in the financial services industry as a legal adviser, product manager, senior development manager, compliance officer and managing director of a financial services firm.

In the spirit of arming ourselves, and related to, the struggle to achieve the best possible retirement outcome, as per the lead story this week, Ladouce is making 67 copies of his book, Pensions for Palookas, available to readers of Personal Finance in honour of Nelson Mandela Day this week.

Please send an email to [email protected] and state in which publication or on what platform you read this editor’s note, and we will ship a copy of the book to you.

Books will be allocated on a first-come first-served basis.