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Low-cost Sipp from GE Life

GE Life is revamping its pension range by offering a new self-invested personal pension with no initial fee and an annual charge of £100.

The Simplified Sipp is targeted at the mid-market investor who wants investment flexibility without paying the charges of a full Sipp.

Investors can choose from a range of collective funds, inc-luding unit trusts, Oeics and trustee investment plans of rival insurers. The Sipp offers actively managed funds from JP Morgan Fleming Asset Management, GE Asset Management, Goldman Sachs Asset Management and Schroder Investment Management as well as passive management from State Street Global Advisors.

Minimum investment is £100,000 in GE Life funds.

GE has also removed bid-offer spreads from singlepremium personal pensions, pension transfers and drawdown products. Most products now have 100 per cent allocation before commission.

Head of pensions strategy Dave Lowe says: “Sipp investors break into three categories – those that invest in the whole range of investment vehicles, those that primarily invest in commercial property and those that invest in collective funds. Our Simplified Sipp is aimed at the third category.”

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This year threatens to be a challenging one for UK dividend hunters. Last year saw an all-time record amount paid out in UK dividends — some £97.4bn, according to research from Capita Dividend Monitor. Yet as Capita also pointed out, out the biggest single factor driving the growth in the fourth quarter of last year was easy to identify: the rising US dollar. 

In our view, this trend is much more than simply a one-quarter phenomenon. It is actually the most profound issue to get right as a UK equity income investor in 2015. We believe that the US dollar will continue to strengthen significantly from its current level. This is due more to the US economy’s demonstrable de-coupling from the rest of the world than to a view on the UK. The US has a strong chance of tightening monetary conditions this year without jeopardising growth or de-stabilising its housing market. The same can unfortunately not be said about the UK.

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