With interest rates slowly back on the rise, we round-up the best savings accounts and Isa accounts on offer in 2019.
When the then chancellor Gordon Brown introduced Individual Savings Accounts (Isas) as an enhanced, more generous version of tax-free Personal Equity Plans 20 years ago in 1999, his aim was a pretty simple one: he wanted to get ordinary people more engaged with their finances, and in particular promote the idea that stockmarket investment was the best way to build a more prosperous long-term future.
As sure as night follows day, in the weeks following the end of the tax year various financial firms focus their attention on highlighting the benefits of investing your Isa at the start of the new tax year.
Recent years have seen growing calls to simplify the Isa market. New research from Octopus Investments* shows why this idea merits serious consideration.
Despite the undeniable success of Isas over the past 20 years, there is strong evidence that people find the Isa market confusing. As a result, many are not using Isas to their full potential.
Cash is king this Isa season, with a record amount of money deposited into cash Isas in January, figures from the Bank of England show.
In contrast, sales of stocks and shares Isas have declined year-on-year. According to the Investment Association, in January investors withdrew £506 million from funds held in an Isa wrapper, whereas a year ago £275 million was invested.
Individual Savings Accounts (Isas) are a useful way to stash up to £20,000 each tax year in a wrapper the taxman can’t touch. They remain popular with savers, who poured a record £608 billion into adult Isas in 2017/18. But the focus is shifting. With interest rates on cash Isas pitifully low and the personal savings allowance exempting most people from paying tax on their savings, cash Isas’ popularity has waned, while inflows into stocks and shares Isas have hit new highs.
American investor Warren Buffett is to the world of investment what Lionel Messi is to football: the greatest of his generation in the profession he works in.
The final quarter of 2018 was a painful one for global markets. It saw the end of strong US outperformance and the low-volatility environment investors had enjoyed during previous years. As we move through 2019, elevated volatility is likely to continue.
The end of the tax year is in sight, so now is a great time to have a good look at your finances and make sure you are making the most of this year’s savings allowances and maximising your saving potential.
In light of this, below is a list of top saving allowances to utilise before the tax year end, as well as those to take advantage of in the new tax year.
We don’t normally flag up guides produced by other people – it’s our job to write this stuff, after all – but we decided to make an exception in this case.
The lang cat’s short, impartial guide to Isas must be the most jargon-lite and entertaining introduction to investing out there, so it’s a great starting point for anyone new to using their Isa allowance, or indeed new to the stockmarket generally. Cat lovers in particular may be seduced by the pictures.