• DIY investing

    Are stock markets about to crash? Investors fear share prices must soon 'correct' - but five background signals suggest the bulls have further to run

    Doomsayers might be warning stock markets are dangerously overpriced, but new analysis of five top financial indicators show all are flashing 'green for go'.Investors are enjoying a new year bonanza, as London's top FTSE 100 index notches up fresh records and Wall Street repeatedly hits all-time highs in the wake of massive corporate tax cuts in the US. Yet many financial experts warn we are riding for a fall, after an amazing bull run. So what's really looming for markets?  Looking ahead: Five top financial indicators are 'flashing green for go'Russ Mould, investment director at AJ Bell, says: 'There are five lesser known ...

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  • DIY investing

    How to start investing: Ten tips to help if you've never invested before

    Investing is one of those things that most people know they should do and far fewer actually get around to until much later in life. But saving small amounts often is without doubt the easiest and safest way to grow your money over your lifetime and, ideally, build a nest egg to fund your retirement or other life goals. The earlier you start, the longer your money has to grow. But knowing how to start is often the biggest barrier to investing.  The earlier you start investing, the longer your money has to grow You do need to know whether investing is right ...

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  • DIY investing

    Investors continue to ditch UK companies and even turn away from income funds, as bonds hoover up the most money

    Traditionally popular UK equity income funds were hit by heavy withdrawals during October, as investors continued to be spooked by the ongoing Brexit saga.Figures released today by fund trade body the Investment Association revealed UK Equity Income was the worst selling sector during the month, with a net retail outflow of £272million, as private investors pulled out more cash than they put in.The sector will not have been helped by its best known offering, the £8billion Woodford Equity Income fund run by star manager Neil Woodford continuing a bad run. UK equity income funds were hit by heavy withdrawals during October.Also ...

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  • DIY investing

    Buy and sell shares as often as you like for £1.49 a month: New Dabbl app aims to make investing engaging and offers bargain share-dealing

    Dabbl, an app-only investing platform, offering investors the chance to make unlimited trades for one monthly fee of £1.49 is set to launch by Christmas.Customers of the DIY share-dealing platform will be able to buy and sell as often as they want through bulk deals, without paying any commission fees - which massively undercuts many larger competitors who charge £10 or more per trade.However, the firm will levy a fee of 0.25 per cent each year for accounts valued above £7,500 - which equates to a minimum of £1.56 a month.Dabbl will be pitted against other bargain share-dealing offers from the ...

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  • DIY investing

    Fund best buy lists DO add value for investors (but beware supermarkets pushing own brands)

    Funds featured on 'best buy' lists of top investing platforms outperform and are cheaper than the rest of the pack, according to a report published by City regulators.But watchdogs did find evidence of 'favouritism' towards firms' own brand funds, which are more likely to get recommended and less likely to be dropped from best buy lists - even though these funds do not outperform those that don't get the nod.Many investment supermarkets research funds and offer lists of the best ones to buy, and investors refer to them to help narrow down choice among the thousands available. Investment returns: Funds ...

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  • DIY investing

    MINOR INVESTOR: How to create an investment plan that can help you build an income, retire early or just get richer

    Do you invest? The fact that you are reading This is Money greatly increases the chance that you do.What s less likely is that you have an investment plan.And by that I mean a clearly defined plan of what you are investing for and how you plan to do it. Do you know where you're going to? An investment plan increases your chance of successI ll admit that I don t have one either.My investment plan is more of a vague investment idea, which hinges around getting richer, building a decent pension, and having some money to support my kids.Around ...

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  • DIY investing

    INVESTMENT CLINIC: How often should I review my investments and what am I looking out for?

    I often read that I should review my investments regularly. But exactly how often should I do this and what should I look out for?D. G., Norwich. It is a good idea to review your investments at least once a year - especially if you are retired and reliant on investment earnings to see you through in later lifeThe Investment Clinic replies: As A rule of thumb, you should sift through your investment choices at least once a year.The first thing you want to check is how your funds have performed.A good measure of performance is how a fund has ...

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  • DIY investing

    MINOR INVESTOR: Are fund managers starting to beat the market again - and can they keep it up?

    Are fund managers starting to beat the market? The active fund management industry has been taking fire for some years from the rise of passive investing and recently a boot from the financial watchdog over fees. But there is a spot of good news for our embattled fund managers. A note landed in my inbox this week from Tom Becket, of wealth manager Psigma Investment Management, highlighting that an increasing number of UK active funds are beating the market this year.That, of course, simply means that fund managers are doing the job they are paid to do, but nonetheless for ...

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  • DIY investing

    Is your DIY investing platform a good deal? Watchdogs launch probe to find out if savers get value for money

    Watchdogs are to probe whether DIY investing platforms offer value for money to the vast army of savers who use them to buy funds, shares and other products.Platform charges and whether firms use their bargaining power to get investors a good deal, and the model portfolios sold to people wanting simple off-the-shelf products, will be under the spotlight.'The Financial Conduct Authority will explore whether platforms help investors make good investment decisions and whether their investment solutions offer investors value for money,' said the City regulator. Moving online: Savers have flocked to DIY platforms to buy and sell investments after advisers ...

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  • DIY investing

    Money Pit Stop: I'm an ex-policeman with 80k to invest in retirement, where should I put it - and do I pay off my 30k mortgage?

    Looking to retirement: Kevin, 52, wants a medium-risk investment portfolioIn our series Money Pit Stop, we ask an investing expert to give one of our readers a free portfolio makeover.Kevin, a 52-year-old policeman who is due to retire later this year, wants to know how best to invest 80,000 at medium risk. He also asks whether he should pay off 30,000 outstanding on an interest-only mortgage now, or invest that money too for seven years.I am about to retire from the police and am expecting a lump sum of 200,000 at the end of October this year.I intend to ...

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  • DIY investing

    Savers losing 1.5bn a year to inflation by keeping long-term pots stashed in cash.... here's how to invest to avoid it happening to you

    Britons are sitting on some 60billion in cash savings earmarked for the long-term but this is declining in real value at a rate of 1.5billion per year by not being invested, according to new research.Fund management giant BlackRock conducted an extensive study on the saving and investing decisions of 4,000 Britons, discovering that of their average 8,700 held in cash, a quarter, at 2,270, is set aside for 'long-term savings and investments.'It says that higher inflation over recent months has seen this savings mountain eroded in real terms by over 600 million so far this year. Britons are sitting on ...

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  • DIY investing

    Should you pay a fund manager more if they beat the market? We look at whether controversial performance fees are ever a good idea

    Investment fees were catapulted back into the limelight last month after the City watchdog ruled that fund managers must simplify the way they charge customers.But although the Financial Conduct Authority's two-year probe into Britain's 7trillion asset management industry resulted in it backing a new 'all-in' fee, the report largely sidestepped performance fees, paid to a manager when the fund beats its benchmark.Instead of tackling these controversial charges this time around, the FCA promised instead to consult on their future. Performance fee is and remains a contentious investment levy that can significantly add to the overall cost of the fund for ...

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  • DIY investing

    Three things women need to think about to improve their finances: Expert MAIKE CURRIE's tips for saving, investing and retirement

    They say men are from Mars and women are from Venus, but does that really matter when it comes to our money? Do women need to think differently about their savings, investments and retirement? The short answer is, yes. Much like a car accelerates and decelerates, in life we have our accumulation years - the time spent building our wealth by working, saving and acquiring assets like a property. Once we reach retirement, we enter the decumulation phase, drawing income from the savings and pension pots we have built up during the accumulation years.What you re left with to decumulate ...

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  • DIY investing

    HSBC and Investec join the robo-advice ranks to help investors with less than 15,000: We take a look at what they're offering

    Investec Wealth & Investment and HSBC are the latest providers to reveal their robo-advice services, designed to offer those investing smaller amounts cheap and easy access to financial advice.Investec Wealth & Investment is already trialling its new service - Click & Invest - which offers investors fully regulated financial advice.HSBC meanwhile plans to offer a fully advised investment service later this year.The two firms are only the latest in an increasingly long line-up of robo-advisers - firms that are designed to offer investors an automated way to invest their savings online. Investec's and HSBC's respective 'robo' online investment services are ...

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  • DIY investing

    'Alexa, are my shares up today?' DIY investing platform AJ Bell Youinvest to let investors get updates from Amazon's personal assistant

    Alexa, Amazon s voice recognition personal assistant, can play your music, offer weather forecasts and now even update you on how the shares in your Isa are doing. Investors with AJ Bell's Youinvest platform will now be able to find out the value of their portfolio and get quotes for stocks by asking a question of the artificial personal assistant made popular by the Amazon Echo wireless speaker. AJ Bell's move is likely to be followed by more financial firms, with Capital One customers also able to integrate with Alexa. Lloyd's Bank is also currently dabbling with the capabilities of ...

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