News & Articles

 

Warren Buffett’s letter to Berkshire shareholders 2013

Last Friday (28 February 2014), Warren Buffett issued his annual shareholder’s letter. His company, Berkshire Hathaway, has an equity base of $225bn and he is regarded by a lot as the world’s best investor. These are the key messages I took from his letter are below: Charlie and I have always considered a “bet” on […]

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Changes in the valuation method of defined benefit pensions

The method of valuing defined benefit pensions changed with effect from 1 January 2014. Previously, a capitalisation factor of 20 was used to value defined benefit pensions e.g. a pension of €50,000 was valued at €1m. It didn’t matter whether you retired at 60 or 70, the value of the pension fund was the same […]

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Income Protection’s Terms and Conditions

When you buy something, you always get a little booklet with all the terms and conditions in it. Do you ever read them? I know I don’t, I just take product out of the box and throw everything else away. Afterall, I know largely what the product does, what does the small print matter? It’s […]

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7 things I learnt becoming a Certified Financial Planner

On Saturday, I sat an exam to become a Certified Financial Planner™. It was the end of 18 months of hard work, having to complete a Graduate Diploma in Financial Planning before I was able to sit the exam to become a Certified Financial Planner™. So, what did I learn in that time: 7 things […]

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What does that number mean?

I got a referral last week for a company director who wants to start a pension. He’s a really nice guy, his company is beginning to do quite well and he wanted to put €25,000 a year away into a pension fund. He wanted to know what that would give him at his planned retirement […]

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The Pension Levy

I watched Prime Time last Tuesday when they talked about the Pension Levy (why is everything called a levy these days? Isn’t it a tax?). With the massive pension problem looming in the future, it will be difficult to rely on the Old Age Pension, the need for private pension funding is greater than it […]

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Why is selling at a profit so hard?

Just last week I had my annual look at my pension plans to see how they were doing. They did pretty good in fact. The American and European equity portions were up 25% and 22% respectively. Those were some gains. So I was thinking; the global economy still hasn’t fully recovered, so if I stick […]

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Don’t be overwhelmed, focus on what’s important

When faced with a big list of what needs to be done to achieve their goals, people tend to get overwhelmed with the amount to be done to tick every box. If you are at the very beginning of the planning process, the “To Do” list will be longer than you can possibly achieve in […]

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Ever ask yourself these questions?

No one comes to me looking for a financial plan. They do all have problems that they want solved though. These 5 questions are the ones most frequently asked by my financial planning clients. Do you ever ask yourself these questions? I like my life at the moment. Is what I am doing now regarding […]

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How much life cover is needed?

Why is it that they have too much cover? Because the level of cover they have in place is based on nothing more than guesswork. When taking out life cover, most people take a multiple of salary, say 5 times. Then it needs to be protected against inflation, so it is indexed linked, which means […]

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