Expat Savings Rates – July 22, 2015

Expat Savings

Trying to best guess what will happen to savings rates is a gamble as financial experts and central banks blow hot and cold on when official interest rates are likely to start going up. Bank of England governor Mark Carney suggests rates will start rising at the turn of the year. However, he does not

Pension Liberation Firms Closed By High Court

First FATCA Fraud Goes Before US Courts

The trustees responsible for the day-to-day running of two notorious pension liberation schemes have been wound up in the public interest after an investigation by the Insolvency Service. Omni Trustees and Imperial Trustee Services administered the Henley benefit retirement Scheme and Capita Oak Pension Scheme. The inquiry revealed both pension schemes were involved with other

12m Fall Victim To Identity Theft

12m-Fall-Victim-To-Identity-Theft

Millions of people have had their identities stolen by fraudsters because they fail to take basic security measures to protect their sensitive information. Action Fraud, the UK’s online scam fighters have launched a campaign to raise awareness about identity theft called ‘Not With My Name’. More than 12 million people – one in four adults

Terror Alert For Expats After Suicide Bombings

Terror Alert For Expats After Suicide Bombings

Expats in Nigeria have been put on alert after a spate of terrorist bombings and kidnaps. On three days in a row this week, suicide bombers struck in different states. The British Foreign and Commonwealth office announced that the threat from terrorism is running high in the country and red-zoned many areas for expats to

QROPS List – July 15, 2015

QROPS-List

The number of Qualifying Recognised Overseas Pension Schemes (QROPS) has recovered as 48 new schemes join the list, according to the latest data from HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC). Since the introduction of the pension age test on April 6, more than 3,000 of the offshore schemes have stopped receiving transfers from British expats and

India Signs Up For FATCA To Block Black Money

QROPS SafetyKeeping your Money Secure

The Indian government’s crackdown on black money is continuing with the signing of a Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) agreement with the USA. Both countries have agreed to swap financial information about bank accounts and investments controlled by US taxpayers in India and Indian taxpayers in the States. Hundreds of thousands of non-resident Indians

Expat Savings – July 9, 2015

Expat Savings

Offshore banks and building societies seem stuck in a rut with rates after the Bank of England’s chief economist forecast the official interest rate will stay ‘glued to the 0.5% floor’ for the foreseeable future. A couple of banks have tweaked rates – Conister Bank has boosted the three-year fix by 0.25% up to 2.25%

Tories Keep IHT Election Pledge – Six Years On

British Expat Voters Urged To Sign Up For Elections

Britain’s inheritance laws underwent a huge but not unexpected change in Chancellor George Osborne’s Summer Budget. In a manifesto promise first made before the coalition came to power in 2011, the Tories lifted family homes worth up to a £1 million out of the inheritance tax (IHT) net. Married couples and civil partners now have

US Home Prices Rising But Still Falling Short Of Peak

US Home Prices Rising But Still Falling Short Of Peak

Homes in the United States are still rising in price, fuelled by low mortgage interest rates, according to new research. In May, prices were up an average 6.3% across the nation, says independent research firm CoreLogic. This was the 30th month in a row prices have risen – although the rate of increase is slowing.

Should Expats Consider A Philippines QROPS?

Time To Think About Philippines Financial Planning

The cheap cost of living and tropical sunshine of The Philippines are a magnet for expats looking to relax after spending hectic time working on oil and gas rigs. The climate, financial benefits and laid-back lifestyle as well and the warm and friendly locals are the main reasons why so many expats go back to

EIS Investment Soars By More Than A Quarter

Seed Enterprise Investment Scheme CGT Relief Extended, Budget 2013

Entrepreneurs raising cash to grow their businesses through the Enterprise Investment Scheme (EIS) has surged by a more than a quarter in the past 12 months, according to new research. New data from HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) has been analysed by private equity investment specialists Radius Equity to review how EIS is working. The

What next for QROPS pension savers?

What next for QROPS pension savers

HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) has lifted the suspension on Qualifying Recognised Overseas Pension Scheme (QROPS) transfers – but has cut a swathe through the number of pensions accepting transfers from expats. In just two weeks, more than 3,000 QROPS and seven financial jurisdictions have lost QROPS status – but what does that mean for

What’s different between an IFA and a tied adviser?

What’s different between an IFA and a tied adviser?

Independent Financial Advisers and their tied adviser counterparts may look alike, but under the skin they are as different as chalk and cheese. An IFA who claims to be independent must be just that – having no ties with any financial providers that could influence any decision to recommend products or services. Independence means having

Kiwisaver QROPS Win Tax Reprieve From HMRC

New Zealand QROPS Kiwisaver’s Being Short Changed

Expats who have recently transferred money into Kiwisaver Qualifying Recognised Overseas Pension Scheme (QROPS) in New Zealand have won a stay of execution on tax penalties. HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) has agreed to waive any tax penalties on unauthorised transfers to New Zealand Kiwisaver QROPS between April 6 and June 17, 2015. The ruling

Watchdog swamped by pension liberation cases

SEIS Reprieve As Watchdog Bans Risky Investments

Complaints about pension liberation have soared in the past year and are threatening to swamp the Pension Ombudsman. The ombudsman has released figures showing a 240% rise in pension liberation cases. Last year, the service dealt with 52 cases, compared with 177 out of 1,281 cases this year. The flood of complaints has led to

Why Bangkok Expats Should Switch To A Malta QROPS

Malta gets tough on tax for QROPS investors

The benefits of switching to Bangkok Qualifying Recognised Overseas Pension Schemes (QROPS) are often overlooked by expats who believe the low cost of living in Thailand is already making their money stretch further. Bangkok offers a great life for expats with even modest financial resources with a tropical climate and cheap lifestyle. But planning for

Check You’re Protected As Savings Limits Change

Calculating savings and interest growth

Savers with cash in British banks and building societies need to check out a new law that changes the level of financial protection of their money. The Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) is tasked with safeguarding cash savings alongside European legislation that allows up to 100,000 euros to be ring fenced. However, the continuing Eurozone

Pension Savers In Dash For Cash

Expat Pensioners Losing Out On Spending Power

Pension freedoms have already changed the way thousands of over 55s are managing their finances, according to new research. A study by provider BlackRock has revealed 80% of retirement savers are taking all their pension savings as cash and £1 in every £4 invested is going towards a future drawdown pension product. This represents a

Bigger And Better On The Way For Crowdfunding

Bigger And Better On The Way For Crowdfunding

Britain leads the world in equity crowdfunding and is set to continue to trail blaze with new ways for entrepreneurs and business to source new forms of alternative funding. The prophecy comes from Darren Westlake, founder of crowdfunding platform Crowdcube. “Crowdfunding is ready to move on to bigger and better things and has rekindled the

The Role Of An International Financial Adviser

The Role Of An International Financial Adviser

Offshore finance is a complicated and wide-ranging topic that technology has developed in to an almost open all hours business as markets somewhere in the world are open at some time of the day or night. The role of an international financial adviser is to stand at the head of an army of analysts, administrators,