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Japan’s Nikkei passes 20,000 level

Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225 index has edged past the 20,000 barrier in early trading for the first time since April 2000. The BBC reports the index hit 20,004.99 before falling to 19,907.63 at the close. Markets were buoyed by US energy stocks and a strong performance by Fast Retailing, Asia’s largest clothing retailer. Earlier this […]

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John Lawson: A spanner in the works for DB transfers

The Government was keen to allow those with defined benefit pensions access to the same freedom and choice as those with defined contribution savings. That is why we have new rules that allow transfers to proceed once a member of a DB scheme has received advice. However, the planned reduction of the lifetime allowance from […]

Smith-Thompson

Profile: ‘The future of advice will be more telephone and web-based’

Interrupting clients who were busy watching Coronation Street or bathing their children prompted Rochester-based adviser Jamie Smith-Thompson to establish a telephone-based advice business. The Portal Financial managing director was working as a self-employed adviser, generating his own prospective clients and trying to arrange face-to-face appointments with them when he had his Eureka moment. “I was […]

Value remains within European equities

By Rob Burnett, Neptune European Opportunities Fund

In recent months, investors have become more pessimistic about both the European and the US economic outlook and yet stockmarkets have pushed on to new highs. Some would argue that this is a worrying divergence. We would take the opposite view. This appears to be classic bull market behaviour. A wall of worry has been rebuilt, and stockmarket resilience should be taken as a sign of strength. The market is discounting an improving economic outlook ahead, particularly in the south of Europe.

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