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Summer 2019 Newsletter

Can we look forward to escaping from all this?

To paraphrase a famous film line ‘It’s been a bumpy ride’. Far from knowing the way forward after the turbulent early months of the year, we are still in the kind of political limbo which can make forward planning seem a waste of precious time. Not everything, however, can be put on a back burner as life moves on. Especially when it comes to your finances.

With the summer holidays approaching and ongoing political clamour, you may allow yourself to daydream of a future when you can escape from all this and enjoy a less stressful retirement. But is the retirement we imagine affordable on the amount we are currently paying into our pensions? In the summer edition of our newsletter, we look at the increased auto enrolment pension contribution rates and how much is actually going into our pensions. This is the second contribution rise in two years, but is it anywhere near enough? As our population ages gracefully, pension contributions will have to increase even more to support our extended retirements.

Some investment income may have been boosted by record dividend payments in early 2019. But the steady increase of the past 10 years, culminating in an 85% improvement through to 2018, may finally have peaked, as some of the large high street names start to reduce their dividend payments. Equity income funds may be the best place to invest – our advisers can review your investments to assess whether you are likely to be affected.

If you are paying for private education, the cost is rising at almost double inflation. Parents with children at private schools, or intending to send them there, need to plan carefully to finance those places. More children than ever are attending independent schools, so we highlight some tips to help you ensure you can continue to fund your child’s education in the way you choose.

Not everything always goes to plan, and when the endpoint is divorce, one issue can get forgotten. Record transfer levels of final salary pension schemes over recent years have meant that for some people, pensions have become the most valuable asset to consider in divorce settlements. However, with immediate stresses and priorities often obscuring consideration of the long term access to pension savings, they can be overlooked. There are three main ways in the UK of dealing with splitting pensions due to divorce, so make sure you take advice and know which will suit you.

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