Monthly Archives: January 2018

How can you tell if your accountant is embracing the future

When choosing an accountant, there are obvious factors that you’ll take into consideration. Of course you’ll want someone who is completely trustworthy and highly competent, but one area you may not think of straight away is whether your accountant is someone whose methods are stuck in the past. A good accountancy firm will be open to adapting their practices in order to keep up with modern business practices. Here’s a rundown of five things to look out in an accountant who is ready for the world of tomorrow. Continue reading

Will it really improve my retirement if I increase my pension contributions by 1% – or should I just enjoy the money now?

Hand writing the text: Whats Your Plan for Retirement?

When retirement is decades away, it’s understandable that many people near the start of their working lives don’t give a lot of thought to exactly how much of a difference the amount they pay into their pension will make when they finally come round to needing it. Increasing your pension contribution by 1% might sound so small as to be insignificant, making it tempting to choose to enjoy more of your hard-earned money today rather than putting a little more of it away for years to come. But is that really the case? What difference would putting an extra 1% into your pension actually make?

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What exactly is Mifid II and what does it mean for the ordinary investor?

If you’re an investor, it’s likely that you’ll have heard discussions or read reports around the arrival of Mifid II. It’s just as likely that you won’t have had much idea of what Mifid II is or how it might affect you and your investments. Continue reading

How to avoid the mid-life savings crisis

Piggy bank

Recent research has revealed that almost one in five people (18%) in their 50s and 60s are failing to save anything towards their retirement thanks to the rising cost of living and stalling wage growth. Described as a ‘mid-life savings crisis’, it means that millions of people close to retirement age are unaware of how much they will need to pay into their pension pot in order to live comfortably once they finish working. Continue reading

What will be the impact of the Brexit divorce bill?

Thanks to the ‘breakthrough’ deal struck in early December last year by Prime Minister Theresa May with the EU, we now know that there will not be a ‘hard border’ with Ireland, that the rights of both EU citizens in the UK and UK citizens in the EU will be protected, and that the ‘divorce bill’ figure will be somewhere between £35 billion and £39 billion. Since before the EU referendum result was known at the end of June 2016, the ‘divorce bill’ – the money the UK will need to pay to the EU as a result of Brexit to cover its financial liabilities – has been a hot topic of debate. Continue reading

January Market Commentary

Another year seems to have flown by in the space of about five months. December, in particular, seemed to go past in a blur.

It was, however, the month when some progress was – finally – made in the Brexit negotiations. It was also the month when Scotland used its tax-raising powers to increase income tax, when Germany worried about Chinese spies using fake LinkedIn profiles and when yet more sanctions were heaped on the North Korean regime – which were predictably condemned as an ‘act of war’. Continue reading