In the news

Coins falling into a sink, money in the news

 

Pension Tracing Service swamped 

People who think they could be missing out on thousands of pounds in pension savings have flocked to the phonelines to try and track down their lost money. Through a freedom of information request, it has come to light that The Pension Tracing Service received a total of 251,733 phone calls between July 2018 and August 2023. Figures suggest the average lost pension pot is worth £9,500. 

Economic Review – January 2024

 

UK economy rebounds in November

Official statistics show the economy returned to growth in November, although analysts believe it remains a close call as to whether or not the UK will once again manage to avoid a recession.

Powering up your pension

Female looking at her pension and making an extra contribution

 

Paying a lump sum into a pension can be a particularly effective way to save for your future. If you have accumulated extra money from a windfall, work bonus or through saving, now could be the ideal time to power up your pension with a single contribution. 

In the news

Male looking at his phone at the Wealth news

 

Who wants to be an (ISA) millionaire? 

The number of ISA millionaires – i.e. people who have built up a tax-free pot of £1m or more by investing in stocks and shares ISAs – has almost quintupled since 2017, with the figure now standing at 2,7601. With the first ISAs introduced in 1999 aimed at encouraging more people to save, the data certainly suggests the objective is being satisfied for an increasing number, with the most recent data suggesting around 11.8 million adults were subscribed to an ISA in 2021/22, making £66.9bn deposits in that tax year. 

Prospects of stronger economic growth

Businessman with economic graph, prospects of stronger economic growth

 

As we enter a new year, the global economy sits in a relatively precarious position, with the long-term consequences of the pandemic, as well as ongoing conflicts and geopolitical tensions all hindering growth prospects. While such times can appear daunting for investors, the key to successful investing actually remains the same: focus on long-term goals and mitigate potential risks by maintaining a well-diversified portfolio. 

Global dividends – encouraging growth?

Money and arrow concept, global dividends encourage growth 

 

A new study1 analysing global dividend trends has highlighted that, in the third quarter of last year, 89% of companies chose to maintain their dividend levels or raise them. Despite this, it was noted that during the quarter, global dividends reduced by 0.9% (on a headline basis) to total $421.9bn. 

Financial advice: much more than the bottom line

Couple getting financial advice from their financial adviser.

 

The true value of financial advice clearly goes well beyond simply maximising the monetary value of a client’s portfolio. As we progress through life’s journey, the major events that confront us all certainly come with financial costs. However, they also generate an array of emotions and feelings, and the provision of advice has a critical role to perform in this area too. 

Building a portfolio 

Analysis1 suggests the value of advice can be broken down into four pillars: portfolio, financial, time and emotional. Firstly, by working with an adviser, clients are able to construct, and rebalance when necessary, a well-diversified, tailored portfolio of investments that match their risk tolerance and enable them to achieve their life goals. 

Financial and time value 

Financial value essentially revolves around planning for expected and unexpected events, with help provided in a range of areas, including saving and spending strategies, legacy and estate planning, and tax efficiency. Time is clearly one of our most valuable resources and, by securing the services of an adviser, clients are able to devote more time to the things they actually enjoy doing. 

Peace of mind 

The final pillar, emotional value, focuses on financial peace of mind. This aspect of advice is often highlighted in research studies, with one survey9 suggesting three times as many investors report having peace of mind because of their adviser. In essence, the advice process allows clients to feel at ease and promotes confidence in the outlook for their financial future. 

1Vanguard, 2022 and 2023 

The value of investments can go down as well as up and you may not get back the full amount you invested. The past is not a guide to future performance and past performance may not necessarily be repeated.