How might negative interest rates affect investors?

| Savings & Investments | No Comments

If you’ve never heard of negative interest rates before, you’re not alone. For many years, such an idea has remained exactly that amongst economists – an idea which could work in theory, but perhaps not in practice (similar to how scientists typically regard faster-than-light travel). Yet the idea of negative interest rates has recently been tried by economies such as Sweden, Japan and even the European Central Bank (ECB)…

Life insurance FAQs in October 2020 – some answers

| Protection | No Comments

In 2020, financial protection has increasingly gained public attention in the wake of coronavirus. Many people are understandably worried about their health, jobs and income – wanting to make sure their loved ones have access to maximum financial stability should the worst happen. Life insurance is particularly important in this respect – providing a much-needed lump sum to your surviving family members…

Financial planning & advice: the difference, and why it matters

| Financial Planning | No Comments

Financial advisers. IFAs. Financial planners. Investment advisers. Pension transfer specialists. For the uninitiated, labels like these may appear synonymous and unimportant. Yet there are key differences which do matter – especially if you find yourself needing help understanding and making decisions involving complex matters of wealth and personal finance.

Pandemic financial planning for the self-employed

| Financial Planning | No Comments

Self-employed workers form an important part of the UK economy. In December 2019, about 5m people were registered as self-employed in the UK – up from 3.2m in 2000. Overall, this makes up about 15.3% of the country’s workforce – with freelancers alone contributing £300bn a year to the economy. Yet despite their contribution self-employed people…

Diversification: a short guide to investing

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If you’re wondering how to start investing or develop your portfolio, then at some point you will hear about diversification. In simple terms, this refers to the practice of spreading out your investments across many different markets and asset types. Rather than putting all of your eggs in one basket (e.g. by investing all your capital in one stock), this approach helps you to mitigate unnecessary risks.

Can I rely on the state pension for retirement?

| Pensions | No Comments

It is estimated that as many as 15m people (i.e. 1 in every 3 retirees) in the UK have no pension savings at all. Those over the age of 50 are especially at risk of pension poverty, since there is less time to build up a viable strong retirement fund (although it is certainly not too late). Many people seem to believe that the government will look after them when they stop working, much like the National Health Service…

How generosity can result in tax benefits

| Tax Planning | No Comments

It’s easy to assume that financial planning is all about ourselves. Yet there is a place for giving and charity too. Moreover, engaging in generosity can also make sense from a tax perspective – both for the giver and also the recipient. In this short guide, our financial planning team here at Elmfield offer these thoughts on charitable financial planning and its tax benefits.

How to get your head around pension allowances

| Pensions | No Comments

The UK pension system can easily leave people confused. Not only does it deal with finances which seem to be in the far future, but the tax regime and “compounding dynamic” which take place on pension investments can also be quite complicated. There are also a range of pension allowances available which are intended to incentivise people to save towards their…

Setting strong financial goals: a short guide

| Financial Planning | No Comments

For many people in 2020 life has felt very out of control. Bringing clarity and a sense of order to your wealth and finances, therefore, is a great way to bring stability and peace of mind to your situation. Here at Elmfield, our financial advisers in Padiham, Burnley, Lancashire offer some thoughts on how to set strong financial goals which move you in a positive direction.

5 core components to wealth preservation

| Tax Planning | No Comments

Some people are fortunate enough to happen upon wealth. For many of us, however, they have carefully built up their savings, investments and assets over many years and want to make good decisions about how to look after them. Especially as you look ahead into retirement where they will play an important role in sustaining your lifestyle; and then even…

Should I withdraw 25% of my pension in a pandemic?

| Pensions | No Comments

The question of what to do with your 25% tax-free pension lump sum has come into sharper focus in 2020. In stable times, this is a big decision given the vast sums involved and the impact upon your nest egg. Yet since the COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent volatility in the stocks markets, many pensions across the UK (which are typically invested in them) have taken…

Divorce in later life – how to protect your retirement

| Pensions | No Comments

Divorce is not unheard of in later life and, in fact, the figures suggest that it is growing more common. According to the Office for National Statistics (ONS), 7,468 marriages comprising over-65s ended in 2004, with the figure rising to 10,937 in 2014. Whilst money can sometimes be far from people’s minds during the divorce process, it’s crucial to not neglect your financial interests – especially with regards to your pension.

Pension tips for people in their 40s

| Pensions | No Comments

This content is for information and inspiration purposes only. It should not be taken as financial or investment advice. To receive personalised, regulated financial advice please consult us here at Elmfield Financial Planning in Padiham, Burnley, Lancashire. Turning 40 can be a time of great change for many people. The kids are older and perhaps you have been in a…

Highlights from the July 2020 mini-budget

| Financial Planning | No Comments

This content is for information and inspiration purposes only. It should not be taken as financial or investment advice. To receive personalised, regulated financial advice please consult us here at Elmfield Financial Planning in Padiham, Burnley, Lancashire. Chancellor Rishi Sunak was scheduled to deliver a Summer Statement in July 2020, to provide an update on how the UK economy was…

How should dividends feature in a portfolio in 2020?

| Savings & Investments | No Comments

This content is for information and inspiration purposes only. It should not be taken as financial or investment advice. To receive personalised, regulated financial advice please consult us here at Elmfield Financial Planning in Padiham, Burnley, Lancashire. In the low-yield environment if 2019, it was commonly thought that it was hard to generate an income from an investment portfolio –…

Paying into your child’s pension: a short guide

| Pensions | No Comments

This content is for information and inspiration purposes only. It should not be taken as financial or investment advice. To receive personalised, regulated financial advice please consult us here at Elmfield Financial Planning in Padiham, Burnley, Lancashire. Is it worth committing capital towards a pension for a child and, if so, which type of pension should you choose and how…

June 2020: is the stock market on the mend?

| Financial Planning | No Comments

The first quarter of 2020 witnessed one of the worst falls in global stocks in many years. At the end of March the FTSE 100 posted its worst day since the events of Black Monday in 1987, and Wall Street in the U.S. recorded its fastest fall since the 1929 crash. The pandemic and resulting lockdown had taken its toll on the markets, with investors and pensions badly affected.

Inheritance, lump sums & pensions

| Pensions, Uncategorized | No Comments

Many young people in the UK are facing significant financial pressures as house prices have risen over recent decades, far outpacing wage growth. As such, it is understandable that many hope that a future inheritance lump sum will help them gather the necessary funds for a house deposit. Yet research shows that, in 2020, those most likely to receive an inheritance are aged 55-64 with the median sum…

How to refine your finances for the summer

| Financial Planning | No Comments

2020 has certainly been a year like no other, and the upcoming summer appears to be much the same. Although 500 travel companies claim that they have assurance from the UK government that air corridors will reopen by the end of June to allow some international holidays, it remains unclear whether British people will seize the opportunity. Many are likely to remain nervous that another surge…

Six COVID-19 scams to watch out for in 2020

| Financial Planning | No Comments

The UK may be slowly edging its way out of the COVID-19 lockdown, yet financial scammers are still capitalising on the climate of fear and uncertainty to trick people out of their life savings. In the first quarter of 2020, at least 500 coronavirus-related scams and 2,000 phishing attempts were recorded by the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau (NFIB). Many of these were scammers posing as fundraisers…