Ordinary investors miss out on opportunities

James Coney

James Coney

So it is at the top that someone should think about repositioning their portfolios.

There is also an inherent conflict of interest here.

Fund managers get poorer when retail investors take their money out.

News of retail investors taking their money out also destroys confidence in individual funds and in the sector in general. 

So taking profits/making redemptions is bad news for the entire industry, even though we can all agree taking your money out is the only way to get rich.

The devil you know

I have become well-used to speaking to financial advisers on Twitter – for better or for worse.

But every now and then as a journalist you delve into a world that you never thought you would enter, and this happened to me the other day when I wrote a piece about tax breaks for small owners who buy electric cars.

You can get a 100 per cent first-year capital allowance on cars with CO2 emissions of under 50g/km.

On top of this, from April there is no benefit-in-kind tax to pay, which all in has seen this labelled the ‘free car bonus’.

I wrote a very straight piece about the tax breaks and looked at some of the sums.

But I did not anticipate the anti-electric car lobby who attacked me over the brake dust produced and the lack of green energy at charging points.

What a monster I am.

IFAs may not like everything I write, but sometimes its better the devil you know.

Antiquated systems

Pity your local vicar or imam.

They are among one of the professions that cannot do a digital tax return.

The antiquated way in which they are paid through different stipends and congregational contributions means the HM Revenue & Customs system has not caught up with them.

So they still have to do much of their return in paperwork.

It reminds me of a friend’s former employer who still allowed their staff to do expenses on paper despite having a perfectly good computer system.

“The vaguer the better,” he was told on his first day.

James Coney is money editor of The Times and The Sunday Times