Author Posts

Super Thursday for the Bank of England

The first Thursday in November – coincidentally Guy Fawkes’ Day – was a “Super Thursday” for the Bank of England. These now occur once every three months and see an avalanche of information emerging from the Bank. The Monetary Policy Committee’s decision on interest rates is accompanied by both the meetings’ minutes and the Bank’s […]

A difficult quarter for share markets

It was not just the poor weather that made it a bad summer for investors. Index Third Quarter Change FTSE 100 – 7.04% FTSE All-Share – 6.57% Dow Jones Industrial – 7.58% Standard & Poor’s 500 – 6.94% Nikkei 225 – 14.07% Euro Stoxx 50 (€) – 9.45% Hang Seng – 20.59% MSCI Emerging Markets […]

Buy-to-let: a future tax trap?

A close reading of the summer Finance Bill has highlighted a further tax consequence of the government’s moves to limit tax relief for interest on buy-to-let mortgages. The July Budget included an attack on individual investors in buy-to-let residential property. As well as abolishing the 10% wear-and-tear relief for furnished lettings from next April, the […]

HMRC accelerates to £1bn of collections

HM Revenue & Customs’ (HMRC’s) accelerated payments programme has now collected £1bn from users of tax avoidance schemes. Last year HMRC gained the power to demand upfront tax payment from users of tax avoidance schemes subject to the Disclosure of Tax Avoidance Schemes (DOTAS) rules or the General Anti-Abuse Rule, or where a similar scheme […]

The Fed interest rate rise

A long-awaited meeting of the US Federal Reserve did not result in an interest rate rise. 2 p.m. New York time on Thursday 17 September had been much anticipated by investment professionals around the world. It was the hour when the Federal Reserve Open Market Committee would release its meeting statement, revealing its latest interest […]

Autumn Statement 2015

The Chancellor has announced the date of the Autumn Statement. In late July, the Chancellor announced that the results of the Spending Review would be announced on 25 November. At the time, he made no reference to the Autumn Statement, probably because the focus was still on his July Budget. However, in the beginning of […]

That August feeling

The summer holiday month was anything but relaxing for investors in UK shares. As well as being the title of an Edna O’Brien novel, “August is a wicked month” probably sums up how many investors felt about the month. It was all going rather unexcitingly around the middle of the month, when the combination of […]

Venture Capital Trusts and dividend reinvestment

The Finance Bill is giving venture capital pause for thought. One of the attractive features of venture capital trusts (VCTs) is that their dividends are normally free of personal tax – something which will become more appealing from the 2016/17 tax year, when the new dividend tax rules begin. Many VCTs have automatic reinvestment schemes […]

Villas and estates

New EU rules about succession came into force on 17 August. If you own a holiday home on the continent, new EU regulations on cross-border succession could be important to you, even though the UK has opted out of the legislation. The new regulations will allow you to choose for your overseas property to be […]

Another inflation measure

The latest inflation figures showed virtually zero inflation and nothing to worry about…or did they? The July Consumer Prices Index (CPI) was marginally higher than expected at 0.1%. However the reading marked the sixth consecutive month in which the CPI had been within 0.1% of zero. So has inflation disappeared? The answer’s not that simple. […]

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