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Morfitt & Turnbull

Issue 21   

Pensions are interesting - yes they really are!
I'm a pensions geek at heart, so for the last 20+ years I have been interested in pensions - I do  need to get out more - but recent changes have pricked up the ears of those who have not been. So why is that?
We have mentioned a few times in recent mailshots about the changes that are due to come into force from 6 April 2015 regarding the ongoing access and flexibility of pension funds as well as how certain rules will change such as death benefits.

There are lots of changes and you should consider what may affect you or someone that you may know. If you don't know the answer to some or all of the following questions, it might be time for a chat with us.

If you don't know the answer to some or all of the following questions, it might be time for a chat with us:
  • How do I access my pension fund? Can my existing policy facilitate this?
  • What are the implications of doing this?
  • What happens when I reach age 75?
  • How are contributions rates changing?
  • Do I need to pay in before April?
  • Is a pension contribution better than paying into an ISA?
  • What happens when I die?
  • Can I pass on my pension funds to family or friends (not just my spouse)?
  • What is happening with annuities?
  • How am I taxed?
  • What are the tax-free bits?
Lots to think about - speak to your usual Adviser to find out more, it is likely you will be affected in some form!


Workplace Pensions - am I in? (also called auto enrolment)
The rules for companies that have UK employees mean that they must set up a pension scheme for employees that are eligible AND automatically add them to the scheme AND pay contributions for them! Every company has a specific date by which they must comply called their "staging date" and this will happen for smaller companies (less than 30 employees) between now and early 2017.
This affects you if you run your own business, are employed or have companies that you act for. We have the expertise to provide initial guidance of what the rules mean, how they affect each party involved and what the explicit and implicit costs could be! Over the last couple of years we have also provided an invaluable service in setting up schemes for companies of varying sizes.

Please contact me (Martyn) if you wish to know anything further on 01565 624370 or
  "You said auto...? Either way, I'm in!"
Our initial consultation report will give extremely valuable information and is specific to the company. We are currently offering this report free of charge (this would usually be charged at £500 and I am aware of other firms across the UK that charge up to £3,500 for such a report!!!).

Are you in? Do you know if you should be in? Do you know what being "in" means? Call me and find out!

Adam's Technical becomes, for one month only, Gareth's Technical 
Investment Trusts - should I have them?
Investment Trusts have come into the spotlight recently mainly due to their recent strong performance and some high profile upcoming launches with Neil Woodford and Jim Mellon. Here Gareth gives a greater insight...

So what are they? They are similar to the Unit Trust funds that most clients have, in that they are a collection of shares chosen by the fund manager that fluctuate, but with major differences.
1. They are higher risk than the equivalent Unit Trust because they can borrow or "gear".
2. They can also go into a very liquid state and hold high levels of cash.
3. The share price can move with supply & demand for the Trust, i.e. the share price will move other than with the movement of the underlying shares, i.e. the Trusts price can go to a discount or premium to the Net Asset Value of the Trust.
4. You cannot access them upon some of the platforms we use.
5. Charges tend to be very competitive, i.e. cheaper.
6. They tend to outperform their equivalent unit trust after the market has had a strong run - we have just had a 6 year run! They tend to underperform after heavy falls.
7. They have a finite period, ie. they wind up at a pre-set date.

If this is gobbledygook they are probably not for you. If it makes sense and you have a diversified portfolio, then it possibly is!

Neil Woodford is launching the Woodford Patient Capital Investment Trust, which is now open to subscriptions. This Trust will be investing in a diversified portfolio of primarily UK companies, both quoted and unquoted. This is an investment to be left for the long-term.

Jim Mellon is launching a Trust that will be investing in small medical science companies both in the UK and Europe. This Trust is due to launch in March or April 2015.

Contact your usual M&T adviser to discuss further and ascertain suitability.

Gareth Says... 
Volatility to continue!

More on the FTSE from Gareth...
"Since the December '14 newsletter FTSE volatility has been rife with a low of 6,200 and now, as I write on 23 February, the market has just gone past its all time highs after 15 years of waiting. I expect this volatility to continue until the UK elections at least.
If you are worried about the impact of the election upon stock markets we'll probably be able to switch some of your holdings to cash. Please contact your usual Adviser if you wish to discuss."

Staff Matters - Decennial Woman – Annie Wong!
Earlier this year our valued employee Annie Wong reached an M&T milestone - ten happy years! It is a rarity these days that people stay with one firm for a period of time so it is testament to both Annie and the firm that this has been reached. To mark this milestone M&T are sending Annie and her partner Dave to New York for a five day break, which brought about a tear or two from Miss Wong!

At M&T we always look after our clients, with extra care, but it's always nice to show our commitment to the valuable people in the office too - this shows that staff really do matter.


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Tel: 01565 624 370   Email: 

Morfitt and Turnbull (Management Services) Limited 
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