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Market View

"I looked at the UK investment market and thought it could do with a shake-up."

Tom Russell InvestSmart

Market View

The latest financial news

Tom Russell, InvestSmart Director, analyses the latest financial headlines and offers his opinions on their likely effects

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Thursday 1st January 1970

Time to Give your Pensions a Wash?

At InvestSmart our focus is on rebating commission to clients, but sometimes that's just not possible.

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Thursday 1st January 1970

Is Advisor Charging the New Trail Commission?

InvestSmart was established to ensure that clients got something in return for the trail commission built into their investments and pensions. With the ban on commission from the beginning of January this year you might think that our service would only be of use to investors with policies taken out prior to January. Somewhat to our surprise that has not been the case. 

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Thursday 1st January 1970

Tax on Commission Rebates?

The HMRC has announced that it intends to tax commission rebates paid to clients. The exceptions are ISAs and pensions. 

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Thursday 1st January 1970

Fund Supermarkets push up prices

Before the Retail Distribution Review came into force in January, investment supermarkets like Co-funds and Fidelity received a kick-back from fund managers for including funds on their platform. This practice is now being banned for advised sales but far from charges going down the supermarkets are taking the opportunity to increase the amount investors pay.

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Thursday 1st January 1970

There’s No Such Thing As A Free Lunch

These days most people invest their money via fund supermarkets rather than buying direct from fund managers.  It offers many advantages including access to a wider variety of funds, easy switching and reduced paperwork.

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Thursday 1st January 1970

Employers to set-up Employee Pension Schemes

From later this year, companies that do not already offer a pension scheme will be obliged to enroll workers into the National Employment Savings Trust (NEST)  Employers will be required to make a contribution of up to 3% of pay with employees having to pay 4%. 

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Thursday 1st January 1970

Keeping Your Portfolio Well Balanced

The concept of having a balanced portfolio is really just another way of saying don’t put all your eggs in one basket. In investment terms the eggs are your savings and the baskets are the various asset classes.

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Thursday 1st January 1970

Don't get bitten by the dogs!

If investors do not have the expertise to review their funds regularly and do not have the benefit of an adviser the consequences can be very serious. They may have to work longer, retire on less or not achieve their financial goals.

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Thursday 1st January 1970

Trail Commission In The Spotlight

Trail commission has always been something of a trade secret, but with the Retail Distribution Review (RDR) drawing ever nearer the Press have started to pay attention. 

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Thursday 1st January 1970

FSA clarifies position on trail commission

Despite the Retail Distribution Review (RDR) coming into effect in just ten months time there is still much uncertainty about the exact rules.

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Thursday 1st January 1970

The Trail Trial: The Jury's Out

The FSA has said it will build monitoring of trail retention into its supervisory work next year.  It says it will take appropriate action where it sees advisors recommending clients keep unsuitable products in order to maintain their trail income.

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Thursday 1st January 1970

Double Charges Anyone?

Commission will be banned on investment products from 1st January 2013.  The angle in the national press is that the reforms will sound the death knell for commission hungry advisers and bring down the cost of investment.  I predict the opposite will be the case.

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Thursday 1st January 1970

Where Have all the Advisors Gone?

It was once something of a joke that the recruitment process for financial advisors involved the applicant breathing on a mirror.  If it misted up they had the job.  There was an element of truth to the story as well.  With no examinations and the potential for high earnings the sector attracted a wide range of applicants.  

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