UK equity income has provided one of the more reliable sources of income for the needy investor, and it is typically the larger, more bankable companies that deliver the best payments.
The downside however is when a fund buys into big dividend payers, such as BP, and the company runs into trouble that problems can arise.
There is also the issue of the star system with active fund management - not all companies have a sole player making the decisions or becoming the figurehead, but the largest funds in the business, Invesco Perpetual Income and High Income have Neil Woodford, who recently announced his departure and this has, predictably caused a lot of angst in the investment community.
Other income-yielding assets are available for clients, notably fixed income and investment trusts. There has been a great deal of uncertainty with corporate bonds, and some experts have suggested turning to high-yield bonds which have more of a correlation with US equities than the conventional corporates.
Investment trusts have shown promise as well, as they pay dividends but are not bound by the strict rules of conventional equities. Altogether, investors have many types of assets to choose from when looking for income; it is important their adviser is well informed to guide them in the right direction.
Hal Austin is editor of Financial Adviser