3 November 2004
Among the many inconsistencies in this Government's policies, one of the most glaring is the exhortation that we must all save more for retirement while at the same time the Chancellor is refusing to reconsider the reduction in the amount that investors can put into an Isa.
This week, I am looking at one of the most popular areas of inheritance tax planning, namely the use of potentially exempt transfers.
Aberdeen Asset ManagementAberdeen Growth Opportunities 2 VCT
I think this is my penultimate column for this esteemed organ. It is about time I threw all my toys out of the pram and let off a bit of steam. So let's hear it for Smee's gripes and groans (episode one).
ARTEMIS INVESTMENT MANAGEMENTArtemis Aim VCT 2
Artemis Investment Management has introduced the Artemis Aim VCT 2, a venture capital trust aiming for growth and income by investing mainly in companies listed on the Alternative investment market.
AXA INVESTMENT MANAGERSCapital Protected Fund Series 2
Axa Investment Managers has established the second series of the Axa capital protected fund, an Oeic that is linked to the performance of the FTSE 100 Total Return index.
In its Market Timing Guidelines, the Investment Management Association makes a case for all investors, whether they are fund managers or private investors, to receive the same level of information about a fund's portfolio at the same time lag.
Berkeley Independent Advisers is setting up a one-year coaching programme for its members with international business coach Anthony Morris.
Bristol & West MortgagesSuper Light Standard Stepped 36 Month Discount
Bristol & West mortgages is offering mortgage intermediaries a new adverse credit range with Mortgages plc.
Should personal finance be taught in schools as part of the national curriculum?
Chancellor Gordon Brown has again resisted calls to link pensions to earning. Speaking at the CBI conference in Birmingham Brown stood firm on pension policy saying the Government will not respond to the long term savings and investments issues raised by Adair Turner until next year.
As many as 300,000 more properties will be bought as buy to let investments over the next decade, according to a report from Charcol in conjunction with independent research agency, Mintel.
CHELSEA BUILDING SOCIETYTwo Year Fixed Rate Buy-to-Let
CHELSEA BUILDING SOCIETYTwo Year Fixed Rate Buy-to-Let
Chelsea Building Society today started building work on its new call centre in Cheltenham.
It is Monday, November 1, the day after M-Day. Since first thing this morning, the phone lines have been going flat out with journalists enquiring on how it is going.
Close Property InvestmentSixth Special Opportunities Fund
Collins Stewart says a total return bond fund built around demand from private clients is also proving popular with multi-managers.
Retail investors are being warned about having too much exposure to the long bull run that the commodities market could be about to enter.
Concern is growing over the way that lenders' IT systems deal with credit checks after an IFA's client was mistakenly branded with a poor credit record after remortgaging her home.
With the approach of D-Day - December 1 - the minds of tied and independent advisers should be straying towards the consideration of their regulatory status in the newly depolarised world. Depolarisation offers advisers the options of being whole of market, limited choice or single provider. Currently, of course, there are only two choices -IFA or tied adviser.
Downing Corporate FinancePennine Aim VCT 5
James Coney and Bruce Love
My financial adviser has told me that asset allocation is more important than fund selection when investing capital. What does he mean by this and is he right?
Genesis mortgage network has blasted lenders for sending out complex legal contracts just days before M-Day.
Homeowners now only get 6 per cent of the Government's help with housing costs, according to the UK Housing Review 2004/2005.
1st Advisory & Brokerage Services 2nd Cavanagh Group 3rd Hargreaves Lansdown...
A Surrey IFA is offering a new lead-generation business that will rival IFA Promotion.
So the advent of mortgage regulation is upon us.As I pondered the changes that we may have to make as advisers to remain compliant (if we have to change at all),I wondered how much the mortgage industry as a whole will evolve.
The next big issue is depolarisation - or, as it is held to apply to IFAs, the choice between multi-tie and remaining independent.
I hope I can be forgiven for largely ignoring the US presidential election as by now we will all know the result. The problem I face is that the outcome, as I write, is in the future. Does it matter?
JO Hambro Capital ManagementJOHCM UK Equity Income Fund
KeydataDefined Growth Plan 2
A management initiated offer for Liontrust fund managers has been tabled.
Marlborough Fund Managers has introduced the Marlborough high yield fixed interest fund, a unit trust that will invest mainly in sterling and euro-denominated high-yield bonds.
Sally Laker,Managing director,Mortgage Intelligence The FSA has decided that brokers or networks who do not initially get auth orised by October 31 can trade as "interim-authorised" while they appeal against the FSA's decision.
Melton Mowbray and Stafford Railway Building Societies have completed a cost-free system update to comply with mortgage regulations.
Moneyfacts has launched the Mortgage KFI Hub to provide intermediaries with access to accurate, compliant KFIs.
Mortgage Express is unable to offer KFIs online as it still preparing its system in the first week of statutory mortgage regulation.
MORTGAGE TRUSTBuy-to-Let 2 Year Discounted Remortgage Cashback
We have a growing range of multi manager offerings which, once you have scraped off the label, all seem to look exactly the same. Apart from their charges and funds, they all appear to have a very similar style.
For those brokers who have made the transition to the regulated world of mortgages, it is time to get on with business but is it business as usual or a case of increased costs and less business coming through the books due to slowing property prices?
PlatformFive Year Fixed Rate Buy To Let
Platform is enhancing its buy-to-let and self-certification product ranges with the addition of three new two and five year fixed rate products.
Premier Asset Management has brought out the Premier growth plan limited editions no 23. This is a FTSE 100 linked capital-protected bond which has the potential to mature each year during its six-year term.
The Pru's head of business development services has crossed the Atlantic to set up a Top Gun academy for high-flying advisers to boost the firm's intermediary business.
Protection has long been regarded as the poor relation of financial planning. Undervalued by providers and advisers alike in the scramble for market share of pensions and investments to get at funds under management. It is, therefore, unsurprising then that consumers also undervalue protection and that there is an estimated 2.2tn protection gap in the UK.
With the protection landscape evolving at an ever-increasing pace, the latest two providers to enter the arena are Axa and Royal Liver. An out-of-date protection product range has led to a new proposition from Axa which is anticipated at the end of November.
The Council of Mortgage Lenders says the proportion of approvals leading to cash advances changes significantly with market conditions.
Scottish WidowsMulti Manager UK Equity Focus Fund
The Scottish Widows multi-manager international equity fund is one of four new manager of managers funds the company has added to its investment solutions life and pensions range.
Skandia's decision to focus on attracting new business and move away from re-registration as a means of asset gathering is indicative of the financial pressures afflicting fund supermarkets.
IFA firm Buckles Investment Services has established a fund of fund range that will be available to retail investors through Skandia and Scottish Equitable.
One way to simplify pensions would be for new employees to automatically join the pension scheme. At the moment, it would not be legal to compel new employees to join or indeed to compel employers to make joining automatic but the Government can get very close to this and probably will.
In my last two articles, I examined two of the main risk factors that must be taken into account in recommending pension drawdown contracts to clients - interest rate risk and the risk of investment performance falling below expectations.
The future of the individual private medical insurance market may hinge on whether individual products are perceived as being less competitive than group PMI.
The Tories want to revolutionise retail regulation - their plans amount not to reform but to FSA Mark II.Under Shadow Chancellor Oliver Letwin's plans, retail investors and savers would get the information they need to make informed decisions but they would not have a system of regulation that sought to minimise their risk when investing.
Iain Anderson is director and chief corporate counsel at Cicero Consulting Pension Commission chairman Adair Turner signalled in his interim report that he wanted to spark a major public debate on pensions and, to judge by the headlines over the last few weeks, he has certainly achieved that objective.