Pension Tax Relief – What A Flat Rate Would Mean To You

28th January 2016
Last week it was reported that chancellor George Osborne had drawn up plans to overhaul pension tax relief, cutting relief for higher rate taxpayers by introducing a flat rate. In the 2013/14 tax year, the gross cost of registered pension scheme tax relief was £35 billion, with £10 billion spent on national insurance relief. With a 2015/16 national budget deficit of £69.5 billion, it is no surprise the chancellor is looking to save money. ... Read More

Graham is running the London Marathon

25th January 2016
Well last year was one of those milestone years and as some of you know, I am a keen runner. Having had a few beers after a session, I said that I was wanting to run the London Marathon. Having entered the ballot and getting rejected I thought that was the end of it. However, at the beginning of November my name came out in the club ballot. So from the highs of ‘great’ to ‘bloody hell how I am going to run 26.2 miles at the end of April’. ... Read More

Myddleton Croft Commentary

22nd January 2016
Stock markets have rallied on the back of a run in oil prices and comments from the ECB hinting at more quantitative easing, helping to recover some of the falls in the market this week. ECB president Mario Draghi hinted at further QE, saying he would “review and possibly reconsider” monetary policy at the next meeting. His comments helped to boost markets, leading to the European Stoxx 600 index opening up 1.9 per cent. In Japan the Nikkei 250 leapt 6% and other Far Eastern markets were up 2%. Currently, The Footsie is also up 2%. Markets were also aided by comments from the chief executive of Saudi Aramco saying that oil prices of below $30 a barrel are “irrational”. His comments led to the Brent crude price rebounding to around $30.50 a barrel, from a low this week of just over $27 a barrel. ... Read More

Wellian Marketing Commentary

8th January 2016
The fireworks of New Year’s Eve heralded the arrival of 2016 and, as far as financial markets are concerned, those fireworks have continued well into this week. In an action-packed few days, news from China has been met with a spectacular reaction by the markets, trumping significant geopolitical issues in the Middle East and Asia. Saudi Arabia’s execution of Shia cleric, Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr, caused a swift deterioration in relations with Iran, which resulted in a brief jump in the oil and gold prices. North Korea’s reports of nuclear tests have heightened anxiety amongst its neighbours, but China’s actions have completely overshadowed both of these situations, with markets reeling around the world. ... Read More

2015 – A Year in the Markets

4th January 2016
2015 was a volitile year for investors, with the introduction of quantative easing in Europe, extreme volatility in China over the summer months and the first interest rate rise in the US for 9 years. Here are some of the highlights of a year in the markets: In the UK, the FTSE finished the year down 4.93% at 6242, having peaked at 7122 during April, as the major constituents of the index suffered on the back of falling resource prices and a strong US Dollar – some parts of the mining sector fell by over 50%. In contrast, the FTSE 250 index and FTSE Small Cap Index both returned in excess of 9% over the year showing the strength of the domestic market. ... Read More