Even those who believe they have moderate wealth levels may still need to take action to minimise Inheritance Tax, particularly if they own property and have savings and investments. Naturally, you’ll want to pass on as much as possible to your loved ones, rather than paying 40% to HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC). Are you worried your family could be left with an Inheritance Tax bill after you’re gone?
It may have been April Fools’ Day, but ignore the ill-fated corporate PR stunts (Voltswagen!). The fact is that the first quarter of 2021 has brought genuine good news for UK-based investors with exposure to global stock markets. Equity markets have generally resumed an upward trajectory, while low risk assets, especially long maturity bonds, have sustained meaningful losses...
Chancellor of the Exchequer, Rishi Sunak, delivered his second Budget on 3 March declaring that “we will recover”. The key fiscal event, which had been delayed from the Autumn due to the pandemic, centred on a £65bn three-part plan designed to continue supporting British people and businesses through the pandemic, ‘fix’ the public finances once recovery begins and lay the foundations for the future economy.
‘Worst recession in 300 years’ was how UK media framed Friday’s release of UK GDP growth data for the last quarter of 2020. They were also quick to point out that the -9.9% full-year number was far worse than any other major industrialised nation around the world. What they only reported far further down in their articles was that compared to...
As the British government and media are keen to point out, the UK is one of the world leaders in vaccine numbers. After trumpeting the speedy approval of the BioNTech/Pfizer, Oxford/Astra Zeneca and Moderna vaccines, the government has administered jabs to more than 10 million Britons.
As coronavirus (COVID-19) leaves many of us working from home surrounded by our families and loved ones, it is inevitable that we start to think about how well we are prepared for our futures. Wills and estate planning more broadly is a sensitive subject for households across the UK, and is often thought of as a bit of a taboo subject. However, the global pandemic has focused minds and given us space to think.
As we wrote last week, there is a broad consensus that this year will see a strong economic rebound as mass vaccinations finally put an end to pandemic – even if we have to wait until the second half of the year to see it.
We recently announced in our November team news blog that having successfully passed his ER1: Equity Release exam, our very own Financial Planner James Blackham has now obtained the final credits required to achieve the coveted Chartered Financial Planner status. So, it is with great pride, we congratulate James as he becomes one of the new breed of young Chartered Financial Planners in the UK.
This week’s edition was meant to focus on our annual outlook for the coming year, while working under the assumption that the UK and Europe would by now be operating under a ‘skinny’ trade deal that would prevent tariff hurdles to trade while also dealing with the barriers to trade that come with operating under independent regulatory regimes.
Saving into a pension is one of the most tax-efficient ways to save for your retirement. Not only do pensions enable you to grow your retirement savings largely free of tax, but they also provide tax relief on the contributions you make.
During a week when global stock markets continued their more gradual upwards trend, government policy was in full focus, but offered little in support. For the UK, it looks like ‘out of the frying pan into the fire’ when official lockdown ends next Thursday, with the vast majority of England under tighter restrictions than before – and for an indefinite period of time.
Investors have enjoyed another very good week. Optimism had already returned the previous week, with the US election eventually delivering a clear verdict. This week then brought the news that literally everybody had been waiting and hoping for, and which we had portrayed as probable in our ‘optimistic case’ forward-look on these pages two weeks ago.
Here we go again. Having had our fun, and eaten out to help out over the summer, the UK public is back indoors for the rest of November. What the government was keen to prevent still came as hardly much of a surprise last Saturday, given rapidly-rising hospital admission numbers, the tiered shutting of regions across the country and the European neighbours having already announced similar nationwide measures earlier in the week...
By the time we have been working for a decade or two, it is not uncommon to have accumulated multiple pension plans. There’s no wrong time to start thinking about pension consolidation, but you might find yourself thinking about it if you’re starting a new job or nearing retirement.
If you’re going through a divorce, dividing up any pensions you have will usually be one of the largest financial decisions you need to make. Agreeing financial arrangements in your divorce can seem daunting; there are so many misconceptions and myths as to what each party is entitled to that it gets confusing.
Against all expectations, and despite considerable intramonth volatility, September turned out to be decidedly dull for investors. After a five-month rally had left global stock indices around or above their pre-pandemic highs, the turn of Autumn sent a chill through capital markets.
September continues to bite equity markets. Stocks everywhere wobbled again this week and even though they bounced back, the S&P500 is down around 8% in US Dollar terms for the month. UK investors might notice less of a fall, with global equities down just 1% in sterling terms. This is partly due to the fall in sterling itself, with the pound suffering yet again from adverse Brexit news.
Stock markets have stabilised and started trading sideways, in a sign of healthy consolidation following their extraordinary recovery rally since late March. Notably, the darlings of the recovery, namely US large cap tech and growth stocks, are no longer the leaders. This bodes well for a gradual sentiment shift among investors.
September has ended what now feels like a ‘goldilocks’ summer for investors, and political, societal and capital market frictions have returned to the stage with a bang. However, the fact that stock markets have not simply plunged on bad news, but have instead remained surprisingly stable, is a good indication that economic and market dynamics are not quite as simple as they may appear.
Whether you have earned your wealth, inherited it or made shrewd investments, you will want to ensure that as little of it as possible ends up in the hands of the taxman and that it can be enjoyed by you, your family and your intended beneficiaries.