Welcome to the Spring edition of the Wire. As we all know Spring this year is being overshadowed by the events unfolding in the Ukraine. At the time of writing Ukraine have just requested a ceasefire with negotiations to take place in Belarus between the two countries to try to find a solution, however it’s reported in several news outlets that the mood isn’t currently hopeful.
Whilst the world waits to see how the situation might evolve, and we all hope be resolved, the human impact is still unclear but increasingly tragic. There have been widely differing reports from various news outlets on both the Russian and Ukrainian losses. It is evident that some of those who have died have been civilians and unquestionably it is ordinary Ukrainians that are suffering the most with some 500,000, as of the time of writing, having fled their homes.
We have written in our recent “Comments on markets” about the impact of this war on financial assets and will continue to be in touch in this regard as appropriate.
I have a daughter living in Warsaw; her and her community are acutely aware of what is happening next door to them; without doubt it is a time of great worry especially for those near the stage of conflict.
At this time we would like to wish all our clients who are affected by this situation either directly or through family, friends or colleagues, our thoughts, good wishes and prayers.
Whilst we are in truly uncertain times this edition of the Wire focuses on building financial resilience for all.
With mothering Sunday fast approaching on 27th March, we are proud to continue our series raising the importance of financial planning for women, with our very own Caroline Maxwell addressing some of the challenges found in the gender finance gap.
April will see a number of changes brought into our tax system, not least the much-publicised rise in National Insurance outlined by Rishi Sunak in his Budget in October 2021. The proposed measure will see NI rise by 1.25%. Whilst the Institute for Fiscal Studies has indicated that there is sufficient “fiscal room” to merit a postponement of the increase, the Prime Minister and the Chancellor wrote a joint article in the Sunday Times just last month confirming their commitment to this increase from 6 April 2022. Steve Jerome examines further what this means for business owners – potentially with cashflow issues for employers as they pay more NI on salary bills, and for the self-employed with a greater need for tax provisioning to be collected by self-assessment.
Self-assessment is something that few want to think about, but Philip Kingscott’s excellent article reminds us all how to claim the additional tax relief we are entitled to when using a pension.
Keeping hold of, and building up, our nest eggs is not always just about working or investing either. We continue to help our clients manage against a number of risks, including avoiding financial scams. With financial scams becoming ever more complex and sophisticated, defrauding even experienced investors, we have been wanting to help clients by highlighting “how to spot a pension/investment scam”.
This Spring edition also brings a thought piece by Sebastian Gladwish for younger clients, and children of clients, as they begin their financial journey, including a commentary on how the Lifetime ISA might be used.
Whilst industry reports suggest that 58% of financial planners are due to retire within the next 10 years with many only really looking at their clients of today, our own focus is as keen as ever on being able to help families plan through the generations. After all, nobody likes to think that assets built up through hard work could be lost due to either a lack of planning or financial awareness by those fortunate enough to benefit from gifts or inheritances. We continue to develop and work with great young advisers, such as Sebastian, who can see the world and its developing challenges from the viewpoint of our future clients. It is so important that we begin to build these trusted relationships early so if you have not already done so, please do arrange for those important to you to be introduced to your advisor. Who better to see them than an adviser recognised as a “Top 35 Next Generation Adviser” by Citywire?
As always we want to ensure that this edition brings something for everyone, and we would love for you to share our articles with those that you think might benefit from reading them.
Finally, I just wanted to thank you again for continuing to work with us – we do not take this for granted.