Falling share prices – a cautionary tale

Falling share prices shown in a newspaper

August, with its falling share prices, provided a reminder that even in seemingly quiet times, the value of individual shares can be volatile. August is traditionally a month when the turnover on stock exchanges slows down because many people are on holiday. In the jargon, trading can be “thin”.  That doesn’t mean, however, that nothing…

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Self-employed people struggle to save

Self-employed plumber

Self-employment is the dream of many, especially as the goal of retirement seems to creep further out of reach. Being your own boss sounds great. But there are drawbacks. Around two million of the country’s self-employed workers are unable to save any money each month, leaving them vulnerable to financial shocks. The same body of…

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New Junior ISA with a minor interest rate

A Junior ISA with a minor interest rate National Savings & Investments (NS&I) have launched their first Junior ISA. The Junior ISA (JISA) was introduced in 2011 as a replacement for the Child Trust Fund. It had a slow start, but momentum has built and, according to the latest figures from HM Revenue & Customs…

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A sleeping dragon wakes on tax avoidance

Tax avoidance - the sleeping dragon stirs

HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) has come closer to using its weapon of last resort against tax avoidance schemes. “Whack a mole” used to be a good summary of the battle between the extreme end of the tax avoidance industry and HMRC (together with its predecessor, the Inland Revenue). First, some ‘creative’ minds would dream…

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What’s your inflation rate yardstick?

The inflation rate is in the news

The inflation rate was in the news last month in various guises. August was a month when inflation hit the headlines several times trailing a cloud of acronyms: The Bank of England Quarterly Inflation Report (QIR) revealed that the Bank now expects inflation (as measured by the Consumer Prices Index – CPI) “to peak around…

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