Monthly Archives: January 2015

Exam success double!
January 2015

Congratulations to both Ben Lee and Ben Slater on their recent exam success.Ben Lee and Ben Slater

Ben Lee passed RO3 – Personal Taxation and is now well on his way towards obtaining the Diploma in Financial Planning.

Ben Slater has now gained the CII Award in Financial Administration having passed the final exam , FA1 – Life Office Administration.   This is a fantastic achievement, particularly as Ben has only been with us for 18 months.  Ben has now completed his apprenticeship with us and is a fully-fledged member of our client servicing team.  Rather than taking a break from the text books though, Ben is now planning on working towards obtaining the Diploma in Financial Planning.

This confirms our on-going commitment to great people and the highest possible professional standards.

The Folly of Forecasts
January 2015

People love to make predictions, especially in January, when everyone is looking forward to the year ahead.  Here at Russell Ulyatt, we believe that accurate forecasting is practically impossible and, even when a prediction turns out to be accurate, it is hard to say whether it was the result of luck or skill.

Rather than relying on predictions for our investment strategy, as many people do, we make assumptions based on decades of evidence from market data and academic analysis. We assume that:

  • Capitalism will remain the world’s preeminent economic model and will continue to provide a steady return to those invested in it.
  • On average, certain types of security will perform better than others over time, so it is worthwhile focusing on those in a portfolio.
  • Holding a high number of securities will help manage risk and increase the reliability of investment returns.

You could argue that these statements are predictions themselves because they relate to future events.  But which would you rather have form the basis of your investment strategy?  These three statements or, as is the case with many conventional investment strategies, the changing guidance of a small group of investment insiders (or so-called experts)?

Some forecasts, however, are worth making in relation to your financial planning – generally those over which you have a degree of influence.  For instance, when you plan to retire and how much money you will need to meet your future financial commitments. Sensible judgements like these are key to forming an effective financial plan.

Making fun forecasts about sports results or speculating about the direction of the dollar or the fate of the eurozone is one thing.  Basing an investment strategy on them is something else altogether.