All I want for Christmas is the dividend

December’s share price rise is a gift but long-term investors still prefer to find payouts under the tree. Will there be a ‘Santa rally’ this year? The Footsie has risen in value during 26 of the 32 Decembers...

Facts and fiction (sometimes called Statistics)

This week’s column was going to be about the Chancellor’s Autumn Statement. Never mind. What a waste of time that was. Not that it put off our news channels from wallowing in misery as usual. A year ago...

Stay calm and Trump weak hand

On 7 November it was reported that Chris, a technology worker in California was so terrified Donald Trump would win the US Presidential Election he sold his entire diversified portfolio of shares and bonds worth some $250,000. He...

Annuities: how to benefit from the small print

On the way back from my annual homage to Ibiza I bought a British newspaper in the airport. Turning to the Money section I was appalled to read some of the most irresponsible financial reporting I’ve seen in...

Breaking news — sometimes it’s better to do nothing

“Don’t just do something — stand there” is a mantra often associated with Ronald Reagan, the US president who personified masterly inaction. This approach helped Reagan, pictured with his wife Nancy, to resist populist demands that “something must...

October Blues?

Written for publication in Scotland on Sunday Sunday 16 October 2016 Mark Twain said October was a bad month to invest in stockmarkets. Seems on the surface at least he wasn’t far wrong. I started as an IFA...

On the Money: Patience pays off while the world frets

A recent US investors’ survey found that those reacting to headlines about the markets managed to lose between 6% and 12% in only six months, with the biggest losers being the most active. Those who stayed patient and...

Take advantage of short term weaknesses

Well, we made it to October after all. Who’d have thunk it, given the pessimistic predictions as September loomed, not to mention the “Brexit panic” in the Summer, the “Go Away in May, Don’t Return ‘til St Leger...

September Investor Blues?

Written for publication on Daily Business Website 19 September 2016 I assume I’m not the only one who noticed that a couple of unwelcome anniversaries have just slipped by. Didn’t spot it in the headlines though. Seems to...

Innocent of all Charges?

By Alan Steel Written for publication in Scotland on Sunday – Sunday 11 September Even a cursory glance at headlines in the financial pages of our national newspapers highlights an obsession with investment charges. Google “fund charges” and...