NS&I slashes Premium Bond prizes and savings rates

Millions of savers were dealt another blow earlier this month as NS&I announced rate cuts across their range, with even Premium Bonds affected. National Savings and Investments (NS&I) was set up to provide a relatively cheap source of government borrowing. It offered security, simplicity and dependable returns and has remained a favourite for savers. As a state owned savings bank, it has never set out to deliver market leading returns, and actually has rules in place to prevent it offering products that would stifle competition. However, despite moderate returns, a combination of a ...

Why have stock markets bounced since the Brexit vote?

The referendum of 23rd June 2016, that began the UK’s journey out of Europe, delivered a seismic shock not just to the UK stock market, but to markets around the world. However, after some frightening rumblings, the economic landslide never happened. There was a marked initial dip, but since then the UK stock market has surged ahead. Why has this happened, and is it all good news? Hours after British citizens voted to ditch the European Union, global stocks took a historic two-day tumble. But not only did they soon stabilise, they have ...

Are you heading for a ‘Toblerone Retirement’?

Are you heading for a ‘Toblerone Retirement’?New research has shone a light on our changing retirement habits, as we struggle with the twin effects of inflation and ‘skrinkflation’. Figures from pension provider, Retirement Advantage, show that: The days of the ‘cliff edge’ retirement, where one day we worked, and the next we didn’t, are long gone for many, with 52% of people age over 50 planning to work part-time in retirement That’s an 11% increase over recent years 30% of people are worried about the cost of living in retirement, whilst ...

Considering transferring your final salary pension? Watch for this hidden danger

Considering transferring your final salary pension? Watch for this hidden dangerFinal salary pensions have been big news over the past few months. The personal finance press has been awash with articles suggesting members should consider transferring their final salary pension. At the same time, unfortunate members of the BHS and Bernard Matthews pension schemes, will be worried about how their retirement is to be affected by recent events. We regularly advise member of final salary pensions and are becoming increasingly concerned about a potential pitfall we have rarely seen highlighted in the ...

10 tips to avoid being scammed

Scam Computer Keys Showing Swindles And FraudLargely thanks to a campaign led by financial advisers, the dangers of financial scams have been big news over the past few weeks. We are delighted that the government is finally acting to ban cold calling in respect of pensions. But, with a cold call made every eight seconds, millions of people are still at risk of being caught by the scammers. We thought therefore, it was worth reminding you of our top tips to help you avoid being scammed. Tip #1: Never respond to a cold ...

Retirement: Is now the right time to transfer your Final Salary pension?

TransferOver the past few weeks we’ve seen several stories in the personal finance press imploring you to transfer your Final Salary pension. Frankly, this worries us. So, we thought we’d look at some of the issues in more detail. Firstly though, we should point out that this article equally applies for Final Salary and Defined Benefit pensions. But for ease, we’ll just use the Final Salary term from now on. To stoke the fires, this weekend saw Royal London, a pension provider, report that Cash Equivalent Transfer Values (CETVs), the technical term for the pot of ...

Why 2016 was Buy to Let’s annus horribilis

Which towns and cities give the best Buy to Let returns 150pxIt was 1992, some 24 years ago, that the Queen admitted in her Christmas Day speech to experiencing an ‘annus horribilis’. This year, over turkey and Christmas pudding, some Buy to Let investors may well reflect on a similar 12 months. The past year has seen three key changes, either introduced or implemented, which will significantly reduce the attractiveness of Buy to Let investing and leave many investors facing some tough decisions. What’s changing? Three key things: The first, which came into force in ...

In the Spotlight: InvestAcc

Spotlight InvestaccIn the latest of our ‘In the Spotlight’ articles we catch up with Nigel Bennett, Sales & Marketing Director at InvestAcc. Investment Sense: InvestAcc have been offering self-invested pensions for almost 20 years now, but it’s probably fair to say that you are not the most high profile of SIPP providers, can you start by telling us a bit more about InvestAcc’s history? Nigel Bennett of InvestAcc...

Pensions: Does the Autumn Statement have a sting in its’ tail?

Large black scorpion Heterometrus laoticus isolatedLast week’s Autumn Statement was, by the standards set by George Osborne, pretty mundane. However, hidden in the speech, and the raft of documents issued by the Treasury afterwards, were subtle indications of where Government pension policy may head over the next few years. The changes, if they happen, could have a significant impact on your retirement and potentially cost you dearly. Triple lock The triple lock was introduced in 2010 and guarantees that the basic State Pension will rise in line with earnings, inflation, as measured by the ...

Savings: A new inflation beating account for savers?

SavingOver the past few months, interest rates on savings accounts have fallen to record low levels and with inflation rates predicted to increase, savers can be forgiven for feeling pessimistic. However, has the Autumn Statement brought some much needed relief to beleaguered savers? Details are sketchy, but the answer may be “yes”, all be it in a very limited way. A new NS&I bond In his first, and as it turns out last, Autumn Statement, Philip Hammond announced that National Savings & Investments (NS&I) would launch a new bond in 2017. Mr Hammond said that ...
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