Austyn James News

06 Jun

Living to 100

It has long been recognised that medical advances, combined with a greater understanding of the impact of our lifestyle choices upon our health, have led to an increase in life expectancy. Looking ahead, future generations are, on average, likely to enjoy much longer and healthier lives than their predecessors. Estimates from the Office for National… Read more »

06 Jun

What is Auto-enrolment

One of the largest-ever shake-ups in the history of UK pensions, automatic enrolment (auto-enrolment) was introduced in 2012 to provide wider access to pension savings. A changing demographic backdrop means that, although people in the UK are living longer, they are not saving enough to finance their increasingly long retirements. Auto-enrolment is designed to provide… Read more »

26 May

Your Choices at Retirement

When you reach retirement age, you have important choices to make. Reforms introduced from April 2015 drastically increased the amount of freedom and choice available for pension savers. Individuals can now choose how and when they access their pension pot, and can tailor their approach to their personal circumstances.         An annuity… Read more »

26 May

Start Early!

Pension planning used to be relatively simple. You worked for a company for most of your life; you made contributions to your pension; they made contributions. Finally, at retirement, you received a pension directly related to your final salary, guaranteed. This now seems like a golden age. Only a tiny proportion of private companies now… Read more »

10 May

2016: Worst Year For UK Dividend Growth Since 2010?

UK equities performed relatively strongly during April compared with many other major markets around the world. In general, larger UK companies outperformed their medium-sized and smaller peers, and the FTSE 100 Index hit its highest level since December 2015 during the month. Share prices were boosted by signs of recovery in the mining sector, a… Read more »

11 Apr

Fresh Stimulus from the ECB

European equity markets generally rose during March, although investor sentiment was negatively affected by terrorist atrocities in Brussels. The Dax Index rose by 5% in March, while the CAC 40 Index increased by a rather more muted 0.7%. Meanwhile, over the first quarter, the Dax Index fell by 7.2% while the CAC 40 Index dropped… Read more »

05 Apr

Lacklustre Q1 for Global Equity Markets

Major equity markets rose during March, boosted by a welcome rally in commodity prices. Over the first quarter of 2016 as a whole, however, many equity markets posted declines, dragged down by geopolitical anxieties, worries over China’s economic outlook, and pronounced volatility in commodity prices. During March, the International Monetary Fund warned that the global… Read more »

05 Apr

The Lifetime ISA

From April 2017, savers aged between 18 and 40 can open a new Lifetime ISA (“LISA”). Announced during the March 2016 Budget, the LISA is, according to HM Treasury, designed to help young people to save “simultaneously… for a first home and for their retirement, without having to choose one over the other”. Any amount… Read more »

22 Mar


George Osborne’s eighth Budget as Chancellor of the Exchequer proved something of a mixed bag, in which tax breaks for small businesses and savers appeared alongside a downbeat assessment of the global economy and the UK’s financial position. According to the Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR), prospects for the global economy have deteriorated “materially”, and… Read more »

29 Feb

BREXIT: Uncharted Territory

Speculation over Britain’s future within the European Union (EU) gained fresh momentum following the announcement of a referendum that will take place on Thursday 23 June 2016. The UK-wide referendum – the country’s twelfth since 1973 – will ask voters whether Britain should remain in the EU or opt for a ‘Brexit’. The EU’s single… Read more »