Introduction It looked for a long time that the main headline for this commentary would be the opening salvos in a trade war between China and the USA. The International Monetary Fund published a bullish report on world trade, saying that global growth will hit a 7 year high of 3.9% this year – giving a stark warning at the same time that trade risked being ‘torn apart’ by a protracted trade war. But then came the news of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un’s, historic visit to South Korea and his meeting with President Moon Jae-in. There followed a bromance Read More

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One of the key advantages of saving for your retirement through a pension scheme is the tax relief you receive on the money you contribute, usually available at your usual rate of tax. The ‘Annual Allowance’ limits the amount of contributions both you and your employer can make to your pension in a year which benefit from tax relief, and is currently set at £40,000. However, in April 2016, the government also introduced the ‘Tapered Annual Allowance’, which reduced the annual limit for those whose total income exceeds £150,000. This amount includes your salary, bonuses, dividends, savings interest and employer Read More

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GDPR is one of those acronyms you’re probably hearing a lot about at the moment. You’re no doubt receiving a high number of emails asking if you’re still happy to receive communications from a company and to be on their database. So what are the reasons behind this? In 2016, a bill was passed by the European Union introducing the General Data Protection Regulation, which will come into force as of 25th May 2018. GDPR defines the legal rights of EU citizens in relation to their data, and enforces regulations on the data controllers and processors who hold that data. Read More

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Following a recent study, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has issued a warning that young people are most at risk from fraudulent investment schemes which are promoted through social media. Carrying out the study as part of its ScamSmart campaign, the FCA’s research revealed that 13% of respondents under 25 were likely to trust an investment opportunity they’ve received on social media compared to just 2% of those over 55. Common investment opportunities to be found on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter include Bitcoin, binary options, foreign exchange (forex) and contracts for difference (CFDs). After investments are made, prices are then Read More

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If you’re unclear on what the term ‘pound cost averaging’ means, the simplicity of what it describes is perhaps best demonstrated through an example. Abbie is an investor who has already decided where she wants to make a long-term investment. She also earns money through her job and invests more each month. Abbie therefore has three options as to how to invest her money. Firstly, she could invest all the money she currently has immediately, then invest the rest as she earns it. Alternatively, Abbie could hold on to her investment money and add to it as she earns more, Read More

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