Hundreds of thousands of pension investors are earning little or no interest on cash held in their schemes – prompting advisers to suggest they seek better returns elsewhere.
Research has revealed that some of the country’s largest providers of self-invested personal pensions (Sipps) and small self-administered schemes (SSAS) are paying well below the Bank of England (BoE) base rate on cash deposits. Some providers have even lowered their rates while BoE rate has remained steady at 0.5 per cent for more than two years.
Aegon, one of the leading Sipp providers, is not paying any interest on its instant-access Sipp bank account, and has not done so since 2009.
James Hay’s Sipp account – which is offered to investors in its iSipp and JH Sipp & Wrap pensions and operated by Santander – is currently paying just 0.00001 per cent interest.
Hornbuckle Mitchell pays between 0.1 and 0.15 per cent depending how much cash is deposited.
If you have money earning little or no return take a look at the insured loan note opportunity paying 10% over 12 months or 24% over 2 years and can be invest in via a SIPP - LINK
BE WARNED - Landbanking scams, where unsuspecting investors are persuaded to
buy agricultural land at vastly inflated prices, are on the increase.
That was the warning this week from the government's Insolvency Service, which revealed that the amount lost by UK investors since 2007 alone totals more than £30m. These are 'known losses' relating to 49 firms shut down in the past four years – it is estimated that total losses from all landbanking scams exceed £200m.
The research also reveals that the average amount invested and lost by the victim of a landbanking scam is around £23,000. However, it is thought the biggest sum allegedly lost in the UK by one person or family is £618,000.
Investors cannot make any claim against the Financial Services Compensation
Scheme because the firms behind the landbanking are not authorised by the
Financial Services Authority.
Landbanking companies typically buy up agricultural or other land without
residential planning permission, then divide it into small segments and sell these to investors. Purchasers are led to expect that their bit of farmland will get the go-ahead for housing development, which would see it soar in value.
These firms often employ hard-sell tactics to persuade people to buy. Many of those targeted are older people with a lump sum or an inheritance to invest, who may be pulled in by the spiel suggesting that, at a time of low savings rates, this is a high-yield investment with a relatively quick turnaround time. However, the plots being marketed are often green-belt land or sites of special scientific interest, which are not likely to get planning permission. Some of the firms use forged documents carrying a Land Registry stamp as an "official guarantee" that their plots already have, or will gain, permission for homes.
The Insolvency Service said that since 2009 it had seen a 33% surge in the number of complaints received about landbanking schemes, adding that it had noticed
"an increasing amount of activity in this area".
An analysis of a sample of 35 landbanking victims from four scams closed down
since mid-2009 shows that almost half (44%) were over 60. The oldest investor
was 85. It seems that men are more likely than women to be targeted.
Officials said some of those ripped off are people you might think would know
better and would be less vulnerable to such scams. Victims can just as easily be
professional people and wealthy investors from overseas. However, the Insolvency
Service has found it difficult to find people who are prepared to go on the
record and speak publicly about what has happened to them, perhaps because they
are worried about the harm it may do to their reputation.
For more information go to the Insolvency Service website.
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Inflation soared to 5.2 per cent in September, the highest level for three years, leaving savers with fewer ways to earn a real return on their savings.
Inflation figures released on Tuesday show that the Consumer Prices Index (CPI) -the index used by the government to measure inflation - rose from 4.5 per cent in August to 5.2 per cent in September.
According to the Office for National Statistics, this is the highest level since September 2008 when CPI was also 5.2 per cent.
It said the biggest upward pressure in inflation came from increases in gas and electricity charges. Over the past few months, consumers have seen a rapid rise in domestic gas and electricity bills, with annual bills rising to £1,345 a year for the average household, double the £740 average five years ago.
Figures from Moneyfacts, the independent financial information provider, the latest rise in inflation means there are no regular savings accounts that beat inflation in the current market.
To beat inflation, a basic rate taxpayer at 20 per cent needs to find a savings account paying 6.5 per cent, while a higher rate taxpayer at 40 per cent needs to find an account paying at least 8.67 per cent.
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LINK TO INFORMATION PAGE - LOAN NOTE
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