There is a lot of information on investment options. Recently Clay Carter is now recommending certain stocks for the international portfolio model. What is never addressed are the actual costs for an Australian who wants to buy directly these overseas equities. AUD to USD exchange through the banks is a bloody rip off in this country, would it be better to just buy an international ETF, no doubt they would get better forex than myself. Could you please provide some information on these costs, the impact on returns must be significant.
Editor's response: Thanks for your letter. We published an article last year with some information about the costs to Australians of international investing: Buying overseas stocks: A Eureka guide.