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Clark Gillone frequently asked questions

Q. How can I legally avoid tax on the income from my investments?

A. In general terms tax can be minimised either by arranging for ownership of assets, and therefore the income arising from them, to be in the name of the partner having the lower marginal tax rate or, within Revenue limits, by holding assets within Individual Savings Accounts or other tax-exempt vehicles.

Q. I wish to retain access to a proportion of my capital in case of emergencies. How do I get the best return with maximum security and convenient access?

A. UK Banks and Building Societies are subject to very strict regulation and capital deposited is extremely secure. Higher rates of interest are usually offered through accounts which minimise the involvement of bank staff and infrastructure. The most competitive rates are therefore usually available through accounts operated by telephone or Internet dealing rather than through a High Street branch network.

Q. If money is so safe in Banks and Building Societies why do so many people invest in Stocks and Shares which can fall in value?

A. Firstly, the choice is not simply between safety and gambling. There is a whole spectrum of risk and reward and your adviser should help you to select products offering the best balance for you. Historically, returns available by investing in real assets such as Property and Company Shares give significantly higher returns in the long term than cash on deposit. Effectively, you are investing in economic growth and if you spread the risk as widely as possible and hold on through the ups and downs of the markets you should obtain superior returns in the medium to long term.

Q. But how do I know which shares to buy?

A. The $64,000 question! Unless you are willing to speculate rather than invest you should look to hold as wide a spread as possible of individual shares and market sectors. For most investors, this is best achieved through pooled investments such as Unit Trusts, Open Ended Investments Companies (OEICS) Investment Trusts and Insurance Company Funds. Up to certain limits, some of these funds can be held in Individual Savings Accounts giving exemption from Income Tax on interest and dividends and from Capital Gains Tax on the eventual profit on encashment.

Q. There are hundreds of such funds - how do I know which one to pick?

A. Consulting an Independent Financial Adviser will allow you identify the types of fund suitable to your financial objectives and risk profile. The IFA will also recommend specific funds in the appropriate sector based on his or her knowledge of the investment style, performance record and terms and conditions of the various funds in the sector.

Q. How do I choose a Financial Adviser?

A. All Independent Financial Advisers have industry qualifications which allow them to be registered. You should choose an adviser with whom you are comfortable discussing your personal finances and financial objectives and who has experience and qualifications in the areas on which you wish advice. All of our advisers have wide industry knowledge and years of experience. In addition we have specialist knowledge and qualifications, especially in the field of Pensions where David van der Hoeven is an Associate of the Pensions Management Institute and Senior Examiner for the CII.

Q. Once my investments are arranged how will I know how they are doing and whether they remain appropriate to my circumstances?

A. In choosing an IFA, one of the most important criteria is the availability of ongoing service to monitor changing personal circumstances, market conditions, tax legislation etc. You should establish that a regular review system is in place and what services are offered to help you manage your personal finances in the future.

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Finnieston Business Park
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Glasgow G3 8AU
TEL: 0141 353 2124

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FAX: 0871 528 8888

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Greenock PA16 8ET
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