Austyn James News

01 Jun

The UK Enters Deflation

After spending several months hovering on the brink, the UK finally slipped into deflation for the first time since March 1960 during April. Consumer Price Index inflation dropped at an annualised rate of -0.1% in April, according to the Office for National Statistics, pulled down by lower transport costs, a steep fall in the price… Read more »

14 May

Election 2015: An unexpected outcome

Financial markets reacted positively to the news the Conservative Party had won a slim majority in 2015’s General Election. A clear majority, however slender, should allow the elected party to enact government policy, while preventing a period of ambiguity while the terms of a coalition are negotiated. Investors had generally been expecting another hung parliament… Read more »

20 Apr

UK rising high despite nerves

Although the FTSE 100 index hit a new all-time high during March – reaching 7,037.67 points – the share prices of larger and medium-sized UK companies generally fell over the month as a whole. Ongoing speculation over US monetary policy, concerns over Greece’s financial commitments and an increasing focus on the forthcoming UK General Election… Read more »

11 Feb

Oil Price a Two-edged Sword

Investor sentiment in the UK was heavily influenced during January by the continued decline in the price of oil and developments in Europe – in particular, the mounting speculation over Greece’s future within the eurozone. In a similar vein, the FTSE 100 index reached its highest level for four months following the European Central Bank’s… Read more »

11 Feb

Junior ISA’s

It’s never too early to start thinking about the future. A Junior Individual Savings Account or ‘JISA’ gives children the opportunity to start saving early – via cash, stocks and shares, or a combination of the two – within a tax-free wrapper. There are two kinds of JISA available: a cash JISA is a tax-free… Read more »

17 Dec

New rules for stamp duty

The process of buying a house has undergone an overhaul with the wholesale reform of the stamp duty system. Before the changes implemented in the 2014 Autumn Statement, stamp duty was paid at a single rate on the entire price of the property. While 75% of house purchases in England and Wales incurred stamp duty… Read more »

05 Dec

Key points of 2014 Autumn Statement

Chancellor George Osborne has updated MPs about the state of the economy in his last Autumn Statement before the general election. Here are the main points in his 50-minute speech: State of the economy UK fastest growing economy in the G7 3% growth forecast in 2014, up from 2.7% predicted in March 2.4% growth forecast… Read more »

30 Sep

Changes in Pension death benefits

The announcement from George Osborne which confirms that all Defined Contribution Pension Funds, regardless of whether they are in Drawdown or not, will pay no tax on death if death occurs before age 75. This is a huge reduction from the 55% tax charge that is in place for Drawdown at present. Further to that,… Read more »

09 Sep

Long-term care options

A crisis has developed in the funding of long-term care for the elderly. As the proportion of elderly Britons continues to rise, demand for care is exceeding supply, and payment for long-term care has become an increasingly pressing problem. The government is making changes to the way that long-term care is financed, and expects to… Read more »

27 Aug

Scot free?

The debate over Scotland’s future within the UK will come to a head on 18 September when Scotland’s voters go to the polls in a referendum on independence. Currency is the issue lying at the centre of the debate over Scottish independence,amid an ongoing dispute over whether an independent Scotland will be permitted to retain… Read more »