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Investment market update: June 2022

Posted: Jul 07, 2022

Rising inflation and concerns about recession risks continue to place pressure on households and affect economies around the world.

The World Bank has slashed its 2022 global growth forecasts from 4.1% to 2.9%. The organisation also warned the global economy is at risk of experiencing stagflation, where economic growth is stagnant, but inflation is high.

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What happened the last time the cost of living was rising this rapidly?

Posted: Jul 07, 2022

The cost of living is rising quicker than has been normal in the last few decades. Indeed, the last time inflation was this high was in the 1980s. So, what happened then compared to now?

According to the Office for National Statistics (ONS), inflation in the 12 months to May 2022 was 9.1%. As a result, the cost of living is creeping up, from your household bills to days out. The Bank of England (BoE) expects inflation to reach 11% this year before it begins to fall.

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How to protect vulnerable family members from financial abuse

Posted: Jul 07, 2022

Sadly, vulnerable people are more likely to be a victim of financial abuse. However, if you think a family member may be at risk, keeping an eye out for signs of financial abuse could prevent it from happening.

Financial abuse is when someone in a position of trust interferes in another’s ability to acquire, use or maintain their finances. It could be someone they know well or someone that is in a position of authority, such as a carer.

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Income Tax freeze means 1 in 5 could pay the higher rate by 2024/25. Here’s how you could reduce your liability

Posted: Jul 07, 2022

Last year, chancellor Rishi Sunak announced that he would freeze Income Tax thresholds until 2026, and it means far more people will be paying the higher- or additional-rate tax in the future.

Coupled with the freeze, it’s anticipated that wages will rise at a faster pace than expected thanks to high levels of inflation and low levels of unemployment.

These factors could mean that you pay a higher rate of Income Tax than you expect.

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Should you voluntarily pay National Insurance contributions to boost your State Pension?

Posted: Jul 07, 2022

The State Pension is often an important part of your retirement income, so should you top up your National Insurance contributions (NICs) to increase it?

Even if you have other pensions or income in retirement, your State Pension can be valuable. As it’ll be paid from when you reach State Pension Age for the rest of your life, it can provide some financial security that you can build on and so may affect other decisions you make.

For the 2022/23 tax year, the full State Pension is £185.15 a week

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Are you a trustee?

Posted: Jul 07, 2022

A new measure to prevent money laundering means trustees must now register with HMRC.

 The government has introduced a new requirement for trustees to register details of their trust(s) with HMRC as part of its continuing anti-fraud strategy. For most existing trusts, the deadline registration date is 1 September 2022. New trusts will need to register within 90 days. Once registered, any changes to the trust must be reported by the trustees, also within 90 days.

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Charitable giving – doing it right

Posted: Jul 07, 2022

The war in Ukraine and cost of living crisis have prompted many people to support charities helping those affected. Various schemes can boost the value of your charitable donations.

Gift aid

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What I wish I’d known – lessons from the other side of 50

Posted: Jul 07, 2022

Many younger people now rely on the bank of Mum and Dad to help get them on the housing ladder. But parents may also have some useful life lessons to impart when it comes to saving towards a more secure financial future.

Research among the over 50s found that half regretted not starting a pension earlier, while almost two-thirds said they wished they had saved more into their retirement funds.

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Keeping it real on returns

Posted: Jul 07, 2022

How you think about investment returns may need to change as inflation soars.

If you could choose between a 3% investment return or a 7% investment return, which would you pick? The answer seems obvious, so let’s add some context.

Which is better – a 3% investment return when inflation is 2% or a 7% investment return when inflation is 9%? Once you allow for inflation, the 3% investment return is more attractive as it outpaces inflation; the 7% return means lost buying power over time.

Consider the real rate of return

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