First steps on the in­vest­ment lad­der

Carl Lamb on the ben­e­fits of tak­ing in­de­pen­dent fi­nan­cial ad­vice when putting money into stocks and shares

EDP Norfolk - - YOUR MONEY -

It’s been a long while since in­ter­est rates on cash sav­ings were higher than the rate of in­fla­tion. As a re­sult we are find­ing that more and more peo­ple are look­ing to the stock mar­ket to de­liver a bet­ter re­turn on the money they want to put aside for their fu­ture needs.

In­vest­ing is a se­ri­ous busi­ness; putting an in­vest­ment port­fo­lio to­gether is not some­thing that you can do in an in­stant. There’s a long list of fac­tors to take into ac­count and it is al­ways a good idea to get in­de­pen­dent ad­vice be­fore com­mit­ting your money to any par­tic­u­lar route.

It’s im­por­tant to make sure that any ad­viser you con­sult is au­tho­rised and reg­u­lated by the Fi­nan­cial Con­duct Au­thor­ity (FCA) as that will en­sure firstly that the ad­viser has reached min­i­mum stan­dards of qual­i­fi­ca­tion and se­condly that you have re­course to the ser­vices of the Fi­nan­cial Om­buds­man and the Fi­nan­cial Ser­vices Com­pen­sa­tion Scheme if things go wrong.

The fact is that in­vest­ing in stocks, shares and in­vest­ment funds does in­volve risk. When we use our risk warn­ings at the bot­tom of ar­ti­cles, it’s not just to tick a box.

It’s ab­so­lutely im­per­a­tive that any­one who takes on in­vest­ments un­der­stands that there is no guar­an­tee of a pos­i­tive re­turn and that there is a dan­ger that you could lose some or all of the money you have in­vested.

Hav­ing made the point about the po­ten­tial for los­ing money, it is pos­si­ble to make higher than in­fla­tion re­turns on your money through in­vest­ments, but there are no guar­an­tees. It’s im­por­tant to bear in mind that your port­fo­lio may go up and down over time so any in­vest­ment strat­egy you put to­gether must take into ac­count any points in time when you will need to cap­i­talise your in­vest­ments, per­haps mov­ing funds into those in a lower risk cat­e­gory as the point of need ap­proaches.

There’s a myr­iad of dif­fer­ent types of in­vest­ments we could rec­om­mend and as In­de­pen­dent Fi­nan­cial Ad­vis­ers, we’ll con­sider op­tions from the whole of the mar­ket. Any­thing we rec­om­mend will have been ap­proved by our in­vest­ment com­mit­tee which en­sures that we only work with best of breed fund and prod­uct providers.

The value of an in­vest­ment and the in­come from it could go down as well as up. The re­turn at the end of the in­vest­ment pe­riod is not guar­an­teed and you may get back less than you orig­i­nally in­vested. The tax treat­ment of in­vest­ments de­pends on in­di­vid­ual cir­cum­stances and is sub­ject to change.

For in­de­pen­dent ad­vice, con­tact Al­mary Green on 01603 706740 or email en­[email protected]­mary­green.com. Please re­mem­ber that the guid­ance here is generic and we rec­om­mend that you get in­di­vid­ual per­son­alised ad­vice. al­mary­green.com

ABOVE:Good in­vest­ment de­ci­sions can help your money grow, but it does in­volve risk

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