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Investing & Pensions

 
 

The psychology of money

There’s been a lot of bad headlines again recently – Jamie Oliver’s restaurants and British Steel are shedding jobs, Mothercare and other retailers are in trouble… if you’re directly involved (or know someone who is), then this is a very tough time financially.

I don’t pretend to have a silver bullet, but I do know that it’s very easy to get overwhelmed in these kinds of situation. The most important thing you can do? Get clarity. Come back to the steps of The Money Plan to do that.

May 31, 2019
 
 
 

How much value does a financial planner really add?

Vanguard’s Adviser Alpha survey is an annual report produced by one of the world’s largest and most respected fund management companies. Their latest survey used real-world data to try and quantify the benefits of using a financial adviser or planner – the returns on top of your returns, if you will. It makes for interesting reading.

May 17, 2019
 
 
 

How to save for your children

With the cost of education and housing rising, it’s become more commonplace for parents and grandparents to save for their children and grandchildren. By planning ahead, they can maximise the impact those savings will have.

May 10, 2019
 
 
 

A Pound for Your Thoughts

The £1 coin was introduced on 23 April 1983. If you’d invested one of them in the FTSE All Share, the main UK stock market index, by now you’d have seen a whopping 3,000 per cent return on your investment, an average of a little under 11 per cent each year. But were better returns…

April 15, 2019
 
 
 
Pension freedom Q&A

Readers Question: Can I Retire?

This week I’m answering a reader’s question, and it’s one that many of us ask ourselves as we get older: can I afford to retire, and if so what do I do next?

I was contacted by a gentleman, Arthur who wanted to understand his retirement options. Arthur was desperate to retire; frankly he’d had enough of the stresses of working – which is a shame as I like people to work in some form during retirement because work gives us a lot more than just an income; connection and relationships, mental stimulation, purpose to get up each morning. However, he’s been working for his company for over 30 years but is ready to stop.

March 27, 2019
 
 
 

Equity Release – is it right for you?

As a nation, we love property, I try to expand my clients views, but often decisions made decades before meeting me means that the largest asset some of my clients own is their home and often they are pension and cash poor, so how do you release the value of your home?

March 24, 2019
 
 
 

Spring statement and the economic outlook

I was speaking with someone recently about their financial planning and they were really concerned about Brexit. The media’s aim is to get you to buy their paper or stay on their website, and worry makes us do just that. If they told you everything was fine, you wouldn’t pay too much attention. But articles portraying the concerns around Brexit get people to focus… and worry.

It can be hard to see through the headlines; there’s an editorial slant on all the news we read, see and hear. Let’s try to take the emotion out of the subject – regardless of whether you feel Brexit is a good or bad thing – and look at what’s happening in the bigger picture.

March 20, 2019
 
 
 
Financial crisis 10th anniversary

Déjà vu All Over Again

Investment fads are nothing new. When selecting strategies for their portfolios, investors are often tempted to seek out the latest and greatest investment opportunities. Over the years, these approaches have sought to capitalise on developments such as the perceived relative strength of particular geographic regions, technological changes in the economy, or the popularity of different…

March 11, 2019
 
 
 

New tax year: changes are coming

Preparation and planning is key to good money management. Knowing what’s coming up means you can prepare and adjust before things happen, rather than rushing to get things arranged at the last minute. On 6 April the new tax year begins, so ahead of the inevitable flurry of advice in late March, here’s a look at the income-related changes that are on the way so that you can plan ahead.

March 1, 2019
 
 
 

How to turn £15k into £1m for your children

Anybody from a new-born baby until they are in their 60s can have a pension – you can even set one up in your baby’s name and pay into it from the day of their birth! The beneficiary can’t access their pension until retirement age, so your children can’t use it to buy a car or a house or to pay for university. So why would you consider starting one for your child?

February 22, 2019
 
 
 
 

Joined-up thinking: couples and finances

Money, like a relationship, is a very emotional thing. Put the two together and you’ve either got sweet sailing or stormy waters ahead. Discussing your thoughts and rules around money is important as a couple. You need to develop together in a financial sense as well as an emotional one. Based on over 20 years of working with couples and their finances, here are some tips on navigating the journey together.

February 13, 2019
 
 
 

Your best three investments for 2019

How are you getting on with your new year’s resolutions, we’re a few weeks in now and for many of you, your resolutions include financial goal-setting. It’s also the time of year when we are hit with all sorts of predictions on what stocks or investment strategies are going to work best in the coming year, so I thought I would add mine to your list.

February 4, 2019
 
 
 

Brexit & Exchange Rates

It’s predicted that the pound could slide further against the euro because of Brexit. But if you look back over the past decade of exchange rates between the two currencies, the reality is a little different than some headlines would have you believe.

December 14, 2018
 
 
 

Taking Stock: Brexit and the markets

There’s been a lot of economic modelling in the news lately as the Brexit debates roll on. Steering well clear of any politics, what’s the potential impact of next week’s vote in parliament on the markets and our investments? The possibilities outlined by Mark Carney were stark – but it’s important to remember he was talking about the worst-case scenario, the extreme that might occur according to his modelling.

December 4, 2018
 
 
 

NHS Pension Scheme to permit voluntary scheme pay

The NHS pension scheme has made a change to the scheme rules to permit voluntary scheme pays. Which schemes offer voluntary scheme pays has been brought to the fore because of the impact of the tapered annual allowance and the need for the individual to have to meet the annual allowance charge personally, in line with the self-assessment deadlines.

November 16, 2018
 
 
 
 
Money management for kids

I’ll Help you to Save Scheme

The government have just launched a new savings scheme called “Help to Save”.  It allows you to save upto £50 a month over four years (up to a maximum of £2,400) and receive a 50p bonus for every £1 you save. Find out more about the benefits on this scheme along with how you open an account.

October 19, 2018
 
 
 
Pension freedom Q&A

Bank of Mum and Dad? Put Yourself First

Parents helping out their children (and grandchildren) financially is a tricky topic because it’s so caught up in emotion and love that it’s not always easy to make sensible decisions. I have two kids and I love them dearly – but there’s a reason it tells you on the airplane safety briefing to put your own mask on first before you help your children. In the same way, financial support for your family is a case of secure yourself first.

October 15, 2018
 
 
 
 
 
 

Do I Care ISA?

The care fee problem is massive, it is estimated that in 2020/21 there will be a £5.5 billion funding gap in the costs of social care. This is set to rise to £12 billion by 2030. Meeting the potential huge future costs of care is therefore a massive headache for the Government and the elderly.…

August 24, 2018