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Stocks & Shares ISAs

Investing in a wide range of different tax-efficient investments From July 2014, Individual Savings Accounts (ISAs) can now be used to hold stocks and shares or cash, or any combination of these, up to the current annual limit. An ISA is a ‘wrapper’ that can be used to help save you tax. A Stocks & Shares ISA is a wrapper that…

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Lifetime ISA (LISA)

Helping you save for a first home or for your retirement at the same time The start of the tax year on 6 April 2017 saw the launch of the Lifetime ISA (LISA), which was announced in the 2016 Budget. This new type of ISA is designed to help you save for a first home or for your retirement at the…

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Investment bonds

Life insurance policies where you invest a lump sum in a variety of available funds Investment bonds are life insurance policies where you invest a lump sum in a variety of available funds. Some investment bonds run for a fixed term, others have no set investment term. When you cash investment bonds in, how much you get back depends on how…

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Investment trusts

Public company aiming to make money by investing in other companies An investment trust is a public company that raises money by selling shares to investors, and then pools that money to buy and sell a wide range of shares and assets. Different investment trusts will have different aims and different mixes of investments. Investment trusts, unlike unit trusts, can borrow…

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With-profits funds

Stock market return linked but with fewer ups and downs than investing directly in shares If you save regularly or invest a lump sum using a life insurance policy, you might choose to invest in a with-profits fund. These aim to give you a return linked to the stock market but with fewer ups and downs than investing directly in shares….

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Pooled investment funds

Diverse range of funds that invest in different things with different strategies Pooled investment funds – also known as ‘collective investment schemes’ – are a way of combining sums of money from many people into a large fund spread across many investments and managed by a professional fund manager. There are a diverse range of funds that invest in different things,…

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Investing in a fund

Making investment decisions on behalf of the investor There are many reasons to invest through a fund, rather than buying assets on your own. At a basic level, investing in a fund means having a fund manager make investment decisions on behalf of the investor. You receive reports on the fund’s performance but have no influence on the investment choices short…

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Maintaining a diversified portfolio

Spreading risk between different kinds of investments When you start investing, or even if you are a sophisticated investor, one of the most important tools available is diversification. Whether the market is bullish or bearish, maintaining a diversified portfolio is essential to any long-term investment strategy. Diversification allows an investor to spread risk between different kinds of investments (called ‘asset classes’)…

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Understanding investment risk

Making informed decisions to improve your chances of achieving your financial goals If you want to plan for your financial future, it helps to understand risk. If you understand the risks associated with investing and you know how much risk you are comfortable taking, you can make informed decisions and improve your chances of achieving your goals. Risk is the possibility…

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Investment objectives – a lifelong process

Protecting your wealth from market ups and downs A lifestyle financial plan has no value unless it is properly implemented through an appropriate investment strategy. If you’ve got a sufficient amount of money in your cash savings account – enough to cover you for at least six months – and you want to see your money grow over the long term,…

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