Our usual way of life has been turned upside down by the global pandemic. Thankfully, due to the exceptional role out of the UK Covid-19 vaccination programme, the hope that life will return to some semblance of normality is a realistic prospect.
The rules of financial regulation were effectively torn up and rewritten this week after the Government stepped in and launched a £120m compensation fund for victims of the London Capital & Finance collapse.
This week I did something rather different. I put on a pair of black work shoes, a decent work shirt and a pair of trousers. I then went to my annual business meeting at our accountants.
Unlike the original judgment in the Adams v Carey/Options case we did not have to wait over two years for the Court of Appeal’s decision which came last week.
I have spent a large part of the last three days in a virtual court room listening to the Appeal Court hearing of the Adams v Options/Carey SIPP case.
After countless times saying to my friend, “You should worry less about what happens if you get hit by a bus and die, and more if you get hit by a bus and live, do you have Powers of Attorney?” I decided that young people should probably be a bit more clued up about personal finances matters so it’s now become a bit of a personal mission to do something.
The pandemic has forced many of us to turn to online platforms for hosting client engagements. Meetings that may have begun with the adviser greeting their client with a handshake or perhaps a hug, offering them a cup of tea, and leading them into a welcoming setting with comfortable seating and good lighting are no longer possible.
I entered financial services just as the tech bubble was about to burst. One of my earliest professional experiences of investing was watching the bubble surrounding tech stocks, swiftly followed by the disappointment of investors who had become over exposed to that sector as it collapsed.
Monday saw a grilling of Andrew Bailey, former CEO of the FCA, by Treasury Committee MPs regarding missed opportunities for the early detection of problems at the failed mini-bond provider London Capital & Finance.
I imagine most Financial Planners have a picture in their heads of their ideal client - perhaps a client who looks a bit like their existing clients.
It was, to some degree, inevitable that private equity firms would turn their attention to UK Financial Planner firms.
As many of you will know, I am a big advocate for regulated financial advice. Not only is it essential throughout the accumulation stage, it is even more so in the decumulation stages of life.
If I was a Financial Planner I would likely be infuriated by the news today from the Financial Services Compensation Scheme forecasting a levy on regulated firms of over £1bn over the next 12 months, up 30% on the previous year.
I was mightily impressed this week by the words from the expanding senior team at Glasgow-based holistic Financial Planning firm Murphy Wealth.