Personal Finance – It’s More Personal, than Finance

Have you ever given advice to a member of your family, a friend or a co-worker or even a total stranger? Of course you have, everybody does it. We do it partly out of trying to be helpful but we also do it sometimes because it makes us feel important. We have an agenda. People who write blogs or columns like this similarly have an ulterior motive. Sometimes it is to promote a product, sometimes

Read more

Time Not Timing Is The Real Issue. The Behaviour Gap Impact.

It’s amazing. Some years ago it was considered normal if you talked at dinner parties or in the pub about what you invested in and how much wealth you had as a result. With the Celtic Tiger bust, this had become a topic that was taboo. Nevertheless with stockmarkets hitting all time highs in recent weeks the discussion of wealth has hit centre stage again not only in Ireland but also in global financial media

Read more

The Society of Financial Planners of Ireland – Why It’s Needed!

As a founding member of the Society of Financial Planners of Ireland I am truly delighted to see increased media coverage of our fledgling organisation. This delight extends not from the ego trip that one might think such a name check might get but from the financial media’s recognition that far higher professional standards in the area of personal financial advice are needed in Ireland. Unfortunately the minimum standard that exists in Ireland to give personal

Read more

How To Pick The Right Financial Adviser For You

Irrespective of the professional service that we might look to engage, most people select those who they seek advice from on the basis of a “gut feeling” that the person eventually selected will do a good job. This is no different irrespective of the profession from tradesmen to architects, doctors to engineers and accountants to travel consultants. Such gut feeling is either reflective of someone else’s referral or the fact that there is something about

Read more

What Is Your “I”?

As someone who is in the investment advisory arena for more years than I actually care to remember I am often asked, by clients and financial media alike, what investments would I recommend to potential investors. My answer is always the same – None! My reason for such a statement is that there is no such thing as a standard investment client. Everybody is different by virtue of their family circumstances, their need for capital and or income,

Read more

Should The Elderly Be Less Conservative Investors?

There is a broad approach among investment advisers that as a client becomes older they should be advised to become less risk orientated in their investments. This is partly driven by the thought of “how would I advise my parents?” and partly driven by fear of the Financial Regulator finding fault with an adviser’s investment process. Since we would always want to care for our own kin, therefore why should we treat elderly non-family any

Read more

How Safe Is Safe?

A question I get asked quite frequently, even in today’s economy, is: ” Is my money safe?” There is no doubt that the level of distrust and incredulity that was directed towards banks after the Celtic Tiger crisis had turned a once sacred cow into a national pariah. And from that, depositors feared for their own account balances like never before. The ongoing, but necessary, rationalisation and merging of the whole banking system has only served to

Read more

The Real Need For A Financial Planner

  When I meet a prospective client one of the first areas to be discussed is what financial products they currently hold. While many people will know that they have a mortgage and its broad details, less will know about what their pension fund and investments are applied to and even fewer again will know what level of life assurance they hold. Most people usually do  not give time to, never mind arrange, either their Will or

Read more

Investing For Retirement

The best way to grow your retirement savings is to invest them intelligently. Putting money in a bank deposit account will, after deduction of DIRT, more than likely not earn you enough to even cover inflation.  In order to beat inflation you have to invest in such a way that your rate of return goes above and beyond inflation. The best place to to use what are referred as “real assets”. In essence, this would historically have meant

Read more

The Case For Managing Financial Clients Rather Than Their Assets

Financial history is peppered with stock market crashes, property market booms and busts and a vast array of stories of individuals who have either made or lost fortunes, or even both. Irrespective of the past, a financial adviser deals with the here and now as well as the future, keeping one eye on clients’ possible expenditure requirements. In doing this, giving the right advice is a subjective process in terms of possible investment portfolio construction

Read more