Phil Wickenden

Phil Wickenden: Making the transition from intent to action

From retirement planning to wealth preservation strategies, there is a clear and present difference between intention and action. This is a common thread running through much of the research we have undertaken recently. Advisers appreciate the importance of certain (usually more complex) financial solutions; they see the relevance and recognise the market need. Yet something […]

Phil Wickenden: Providers and advisers must engage on protection

Last week, I looked at how, despite some encouraging signs of adviser engagement with business protection since 2015, only 32 per cent of clients that advisers believe should have cover in place do so. The real challenge is getting clients to associate more strongly with a mental image of the future that is much more […]

Phil Wickenden: Calling time on protection inaction

Winston Churchill once said: “I always avoid prophesying beforehand because it is much better to prophesy after the event has already taken place.” This knowingly oxymoronic gem rather highlights the less knowing contradictions rife in the high-net-worth and business protection markets. The past five years or so have seen innumerable pension, investment and tax changes […]

Phil Wickenden: IHT engagement has room to improve

Self-evidently, inheritance tax and estate planning becomes more important and relevant the older clients get. But importance and relevance don’t simply auto-translate into interest and action. Even at older ages (as is the case for simple will planning) and among the wealthiest (and, in theory, most “relevant”) brackets, estate planning is something that clients will, […]

Phil Wickenden: Tax system’s tech overhaul far from over

The Office of Tax Simplification has called for the government to consider auto-enrolling all taxpayers into HM Revenue & Customs’ personal tax account service, after concerns that developing technology will cause individuals to lose sight of their obligations. The OTS has published a discussion paper looking at the risks tax simplification through technology poses. The […]

Phil Wickenden: Don’t rush to believe in unicorns

Unicorns were rare years ago. They are still pretty difficult to find in the wild but the amount of companies meriting the moniker has increased. There are now hordes of them all over the world, from China to Silicon Valley. Investors and advisers need to tread carefully. A unicorn is a growth-oriented company, often venture […]

Phil Wickenden: No place for intuition in KYC

A bloke from Brighton posted a joke advert on Gumtree a while back, which offered free rent on a flat for anyone willing to wear a walrus outfit he had specially made for two hours every day. During this time, the candidate would have to fully embrace the role of a walrus including – why […]

Phil Wickenden: IHT system is still crying out for reform

Chancellor Philip Hammond wrote to the Office of Tax Simplification in January last year asking it to review inheritance tax. In a report published in November, the OTS recommended the government implement a fully integrated digital system for IHT. It also recommended HM Revenue & Customs make changes to the current forms to reduce and […]

Phil Wickenden: Maximise your income potential

Income investors have been feeling the pinch for years. With interest rates at near-historic lows, many have been forced to take more risk with their money to obtain decent yields. This demand for yield has had the effect of driving up prices of assets that pay a reliable income. Markets may remain testing, but advisers […]

Phil Wickenden: It’s the difficult work that is worth doing

A marketing-driven organisation is run by the marketing department. It revolves around what marketers do. A market-driven organisation is driven by what the market wants, regardless of what the marketing department feels like doing. Now, of course, there are organisations driven by sales, shareholder relations, operations and finance too, and you can usually tell which […]

Phil Wickenden: Why you need to report on client experience

Did you know that, if we squeezed the space out of all the atoms in our bodies, the entire human race would amount to the size of a sugar cube? What we value does not seem to amount to very much, does it? Indeed, say there are seven billion people in the world, each weighing […]