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Coronavirus – and the markets’ volatility

With billions being wiped off the stock market due to the coronavirus outbreak, it’s hard for investors not to panic. Markets are extremely volatile, despite measures taken by central banks around the world, including the Bank of England, to try and reduce the impact of the pandemic.    There are, however, a few key principles to

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How to get your child on the property ladder

It’s a tough environment for first time buyers. Rising house prices and stagnant wage growth have pushed up the average age of buying a first property to 33. What’s more, first time buyers need to borrow 18 times more than those in the 1970s. Given this context, it’s unsurprising that more and more parents and

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Are we heading towards a cashless society?

A new polymer ‘‘Turner’’ £20 note entered circulation at the end of February which the Bank of England claims is its most secure banknote ever. The new note replaces the ‘’Adam Smith’’ £20 note that has been in circulation since 2007. Artist JMW Turner is the new face of the £20 note. He is considered

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IR35 – ready, steady…not ready?

The big issue which has been dominating the accounting world in recent months is IR35. Will businesses be ready when the reforms come in on 6th April?  The overwhelming view expressed by representatives from various accountancy bodies is that they will most certainly not be, not least because legislation is still not finalised.          IR35 was

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The impact of coronavirus on stock markets

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Stock markets across the world have fallen sharply because of fears over the economic impact of the coronavirus as the number of cases continues to rise. The situation is changing rapidly all the time but at the time of writing the virus that started in China has spread to more than 50 countries, including the

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Environmental investing themes for 2020

Although the financial markets have seen their fair share of volatility over the last decade, there has been a growth in opportunities for investors wanting to invest in environmentally conscious businesses. If you’re looking to make a more positive impact on the world while also seeking returns on your investment, it’s important to be aware

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What’s happening to the tapered annual allowance?

There has been much talk in the financial press recently of proposed changes to the threshold for the tapered annual allowance from £110,000 to £150,000. The taper was introduced in 2016 and gradually reduces the annual allowance for those on high incomes. For every £2 of adjusted income above £150,000 a year, £1 of annual

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Proposed changes to IHT for siblings?

At the moment, only those who are married or who are registered civil partners are exempt from paying inheritance tax (IHT) on money or property left to them by their spouse. This was expanded to include heterosexual civil partnerships at the end of 2019. But the law does not cover siblings who are cohabiting.They are

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February Market Commentary

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China grabbed the headlines again in January, but this time not for trade. On 31st December, the Chinese authorities had notified the World Health Organisation of an outbreak of pneumonia in Wuhan City, Hubei Province. Today the country is in lockdown, the death toll is rising fast, the number of infected is rising faster.  The

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When life means life

Some people object to insurance on the principle that it may not provide any tangible benefits: an insurance policy only pays out if the event occurs that it’s designed to protect against. If your house doesn’t suffer fire, flood, subsidence or other damage, your house insurance won’t pay out. And so on. Of course, many such

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