It's our round-up of the stories your clients may have read in the national newspapers over the weekend...
With annuity rates already falling at increasing rates and new EU gender discrimination rules set to hit them further for men, the Independent on Sunday ran a feature about squeezing the most out of retirement income.
The main focus was on enhanced annuities, with readers urged to consider all their health and lifestyle issues, which could lead to higher payouts. Meanwhile, there was also a reminder of the difference shopping around can make.
Community investment schemes
Clients looking for decent returns and a clear conscience may have had their interests piqued by a piece in the Guardian on community investment schemes. It reported on a ‘wood fuel co-operative', offering savers offer savers 6%-8% returns a year, as well as a number of other options.
Stories your clients may have read last weekend
Of course, there was also a reminder that most of these schemes are not regulated by the FSA, and therefore come without the safety net of the Financial Ombudsman Scheme or FSCS.
With interest paid on deposits still dismally low, the quest for income, and for ways of saving that can preserve the real value of money, has never been greater, according to the Mail on Sunday. It explained how investment trusts beat unit trusts "hands down" when it comes to paying dividends that grow year on year.
Among the trusts mentioned in the piece were Bankers, British Empire Securities, Law Debenture and Murray International, with many of them having had decades of increasing dividend payments.
Dash for cash
If there was one thing readers of the Sunday Telegraph will have learnt over the weekend, it is that cash appears to be the retreat of choice at the moment. The stockbrokers, fund managers and providers it spoke to all reported significant investments in cash in recent months, with protection the priority over returns.
The uncertainty in Europe is the main driver for the behaviour, with savers having seen as much as 25% wiped off the value of their funds in just three months as global economic fears intensified.
With shares only ever seeming to go southwards, it could be understandable why people are giving up on pensions yet, as the Telegraph explained, there is hope for the future. It said pound cost averaging was helping savers reduce the risk of bad timing, while there is also always the opportunity to buy more shares at discounted prices.
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