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  • C-19 driven equity release demand dip

    15 July 2020

    Homeowners aged 55 and over released £1.47 billion worth of equity from their property in the first half of 2020, but the effects of the Coronavirus saw the number of customers fall compared to the previous year.   According to Key’s Equity Release Market Monitor, the number of plans taken out during the first...

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  • Why with-profits funds in 2020?

    15 July 2020

    With-profits funds can help investors weather stormy markets, says Martin Shaw, chief executive of the Association of Financial Mutuals. Even before Covid-19 arrived in the UK, volatility in the value of shares seems to have grown steadily in recent years. Much of this stems from the fact that markets are able to respond more quickly to...

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  • HMRC reduces tax gap to record low

    14 July 2020

    HM Revenue & Customs reduced its “tax gap” to a record low £31 billion in 2018/19, according to the latest published figures.  The tax gap is the difference between the amount of tax that should in theory be paid to HMRC and what is actually paid. The gap arises for various reasons, including human...

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  • Portfolio recovery – balancing risk and return

    14 July 2020

    Most investors are opting for security and savings over high returns at present, says Giles Coghlan, chief currency analyst at HYCM Like me, you’re probably wondering whether now is an ideal time to begin implementing a post-pandemic recovery plan. By this, I mean a financial strategy that is able to recoup any potential losses...

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  • Simpler pensions favoured by advice firms

    14 July 2020

    Simple pension products retain their popularity among advisers, despite the growth of more complex wrappers like SIPPs, new research has shown. According to a report by Aegon and NextWealth, 80% of advisers said they would recommend a standalone pension product for their clients’ retirement needs, particularly if a client has lower retirement wealth (45%)...

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  • Death benefits and life cover when advising on a pensions transfer

    13 July 2020

    The FCA concerns around use of death benefits as a primary argument for DB transfer. Consideration needs to be given to life cover options when firms are assessing suitability of a transfer, says ATEB Consulting’s Steve Bailey. We often see death benefits cited as a key objective by clients when discussing potential transfers out...

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  • Investment Committee: Time to invest in our home market?

    13 July 2020

    UK equity stocks were trading at a 30% discount to their global peers pre-crisis. Could this make the UK the place to invest for the recovery? And might small-mid cap benefit most? Darius McDermott, managing director, FundCalibre, takes a view. Unstable politics and Brexit played a key role in what was a difficult decade...

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  • Govt & 12 professional bodies launch Green Finance Education Charter

    13 July 2020

    The UK Government has joined forces with the Green Finance Institute and 12 financial professional bodies to launch the first Green Finance Education Charter. The Charter was first announced in the UK’s Green Finance Strategy in July 2019, which committed to ensuring financial risks and opportunities from climate change were integrated into mainstream financial...

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