11 February 2016

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Is the end of the tax year losing its relevance?

There is nothing like a hard deadline to focus the mind. This is why tax year-end has traditionally been the busiest time of year for advisers. However, we have reason to believe that, for some, this is not so much the case any longer. We recently carried out a survey of advisers to get their […]

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Why advice firms can’t work without social media

Social media is at the heart of a revolution in both our business and private lives.  However, many advisory firms do not actively use it when communicating with clients. This is a major strategic mistake and one that is potentially dangerous for long-term success. This is reinforced when you consider the latest statistics for social […]

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Martin Bamford: Building an advice business begins at home

When I first started out as an IFA I spent a reasonable amount of time working with some clients in Liverpool. That is about 240 miles from where I live and work in deepest Surrey, or around five hours each way by car. It was one of those client relationships that started off innocently enough. […]

Tony Wickenden: A new dawn for making tax digital

In this week’s instalment considering the draft clauses from the Finance Bill 2016 most relevant to financial planners I am going to turn my attention to stamp duty and tax administration. As in previous articles in this series, I will break down my consideration into the headings used in the HM Revenue & Customs overview of the […]

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Steve Bee: Give people early access to state pensions

The long-awaited Parliamentary debate forced by more than 140,000 signatures on the petition raised by the Women Against State Pension Inequality was held on 1 February. Following on from a previous debate held on 7 January, it really would have been more appropriate to have had it on 2 February – Groundhog Day. The Government’s stonewall […]

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Do investors really want Osborne’s flexible Isa?

Current rules state if an investor decides to make a withdrawal from their Isa, this has no impact on their overall allowance. If they wish to replace the money, it will count as a new, further subscription, which will eat into any allowance they have remaining. From next tax year, Isa managers will be able to […]

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Is buy-to-let a threat to the UK economy?

Housing economists dispute the Bank of England’s belief the buy-to-let mortgage sector has become systemically important and a threat to the wider economy. Last month the Bank of England said the buy-to-let sector is now large enough to be a possible danger to UK plc. The Bank is worried an interest rate rise or financial […]

Nick Eatock: Myth busting on high-net-worths’ digital take-up

It is a common misconception that the people most switched on in terms of IT and digital engagement are the young. Accessing the internet on the go is increasing among all ages. According to the Office for National Statistics, around one-third of over-65s went online while they were out and about in 2015. Last year’s […]

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Malcolm Kerr: Will the advice review reignite basic advice?

The big question: is commission going to be re-introduced? The short answer: No. You cannot re introduce something that did not go away. Remember basic advice? The RDR specifically exempted it from the commission ban. Perhaps the solution to the advice gap might see basic advice reincarnated – if, of course, there is an advice […]