The last year has speeded up changes that would, in normal times, have taken five or more years to make a daily difference to our way of living and working.
Climate change was a known risk, high streets were already losing business to online shopping and banking and technology were changing the way we work. It has been challenging and has shown us who in society has been undervalued and who rewarded excessively.
It has made a big difference to my workdays and to opportunities to make money and do good. We hope the challenges you have faced were manageable? We cannot guess what has happened in your life, but we look forward to seeing you soon.
In a world where we have been reminded that our health and life span are fragile, things beyond our control impact, without warning: pandemics, weather events or accidents that can change our lives in an instant.
My job is to help you to plan for a future that you may not be able to enjoy.
In a 40-year career I have twice been faced with situations where life insurance was refused.
One of those clients was an architect who did not need to be in this situation.
He had cancelled the cover for his mortgage, as part of an endowment policy, to buy a holiday home. In the meantime, he had undergone heart surgery and was fearful that his young family would be left with two unaffordable mortgages.
In the other case, the client’s brother had recently died prompting him to seek financial protection for his wife and 4 children. His indigestion turned out to be bowel cancer.
There have been other occasions when I was unable to persuade clients to take income protection. Sadly, clients often choose to spend rather than protect.
If you or any member of your friends or family have yet to buy financial protection, our current health crisis must be a wake up call.
High Street v FTSE
Do you know what is the best instant access savings rate on the High Street?
I took a look recently as part of our ‘why now’ infographic on UK equities and found a top rate of 1.1.%. While that is pretty good considering the yield on government bonds, it is still relatively poor compared to the FTSE All-Share.
Equity investments can go down as well as up, but we think there are reasons to be optimistic in the UK, especially when many investors overlook the growth opportunities in the market, many of which are exposed to strong secular themes.
The major investment themes today are:
Ageing & Lifestyle, the Connected Consumer, Automation, CleanTech, and Transitioning Societies as well as the over-arching need to consider Ethical, Social & Governance