This week, savings took centre stage in the money sections but, sadly, not necessarily for the right reasons.
Alexandra Goss kicked things off looking at figures from HSBC which show that more than 5.5m fixed-rate products will mature this year. The drop in interest rates means that someone who is hoping to invest in a similar product could see their returns drop by 46%.
The Sunday Telegraph continued this theme, warning that hundreds of thousands of Britons would suffer a ‘savings shock’ once their bond matures. The FT also looked at these figures from HSBC and how savers would be affected. In addition, the piece had a helpful rundown of all the best products that are currently available.
The savings woe continued as we turned to Isas – more specifically, Isa transfers. Jeff Prestridge relayed the story of a Mail on Sunday reader who has been waiting 12 weeks to move money from one cash Isa to another within the same organisation. Simon Read in the Independent told a similar story (albeit with a different bank at fault) highlighting just how much interest we are set to lose, the longer these transfers take. The Independent on Sunday also carried on with this theme, flying the flag for all wronged consumers.
But it was not all doom and gloom for savers. Emma Simon offered some constructive advice in the Telegraph, saying that savers should not be swayed by ‘rip-off’ funds and should switch into higher-paying alternatives.
The Guardian featured a brand new initiative from housebuilder Barratt, which has just become the first UK firm to make a workplace Isa available to its staff. This allows workers to make regular payments from their salary into a shares-based investment plan where the charges tend to be lower than if you took out a regular Isa. This could be something we see more of as a separate survey shows half of all employers would consider introducing one to their staff.
And finally, the FT looked at hybrid funds, which fund managers are hoping will become more popular in the wake of BP cancelling its dividend. Advisers, however, are warning that the fees are simply too high and investors would be better looking to separate equity and bond funds.
And the scores this week are: