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BenFairfax

My Examiner Finance Column

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I think people have confused you with being a journalist.

 

Surely as a private investor you'll be writing about things that interest you and imparting some of your wisdom.

 

The original plan was to write up ideas and observations which I have been researching within my private investment activities. However, I am more than happy, and in fact I think I should, orient the content towards the interests of the reader. I am not a career journalist, employed by Johnston Press or have any formal contract with the publisher. The plan is just to submit a weekly article between 450-500 words to the Editor which then goes through the editorial process, before appearing in my weekly column in the pink pages of the Examiner.

 

Next week, the column will be entitled “Oil Supply and Free Market Dynamics".

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Shouldn't you be saving this advice for your column?

 

The column is only weekly and I am constantly looking at different ideas, and hence I will always have idea’s fresh on my mind for the weekly column. For example, this evening a fellow investor came around my place and we where talking about stocks and the macro outlook for the past 5 hours.

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Tsssk. Let's hope that they give your pearls of wisdom a good sub-editing.

 

Amazes me that a master of so many hip corporate phrases and big financial concepts has such trouble with basic spelling and grammar.

 

Horses for courses I expect - being a working bloke I don't understand much about your world either.

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We definitely want recommendations from someone at the sharp end who invests their own cash and makes a good return. It is always easier to give advice. It is harder to take it.

 

My intension is the make the column as practical as possible, and at the end of the day the point of investing is to increase your purchasing power. I.e. to make good returns and consistenly. My returns seem to have generated particularly interested in my activities at the FSC and as such my column will have a fairly onomous disclaimer. For this reason the explicit recommendations will be rather low key for at least the first few weeks when the FSC have relaxed a bit.

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Opting back in to state pension, ive opted out at the moment but cannot get any good advice on wether or not to opt back in.

 

I can sympathise with your situation but without knowing your exact situation I really cannot know. If there is a citizen’s advice biro her on the Island then I would ask there. Unfortunately it seems that no government office would provide you with such advice since it is deemed 'financial advice' and as such requires the person providing such advice to hold an FSC license.

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(Even) the Examiner isn't this dotty. I'm 99.9 percent certain that this is a joke thread.

 

The 0.1 percent is too scary to imagine.

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This is "viral marketing", I suspect. I'm certainly not complaining at getting free informed advice

 

It is market research since my column will not appear until next Monday. Anyway, it is good to see plenty of interest which means my efforts will be use to the community.

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I will try to cover these topics at some point, and as best as I can factor out the various parties trying to push their industry and/or gain political capital.

 

Sorry you did say it was isle of man newspapers your column is appearing in? That will be interesting. Hope you get past week one.

 

Yes, it will appear in the pink pages of "The Examiner". I am commited to doing this and accept that some weeks it will be easier going than others.

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On the dollar/GBP level I agree, the dollar though has structural problems but then again once the UK housing market turns so will the pound.

 

Is that a statement of definite fact or an opinion; that the UK housing market will turn and that this will result in structural problems for sterling?

 

What does turn exactly mean in this context and how can I measure it? Ditto structural problems.

 

It is an opinion (or an application of applied probability if you prefer) since I am talking about the future. In this context I am referring to the ability of the UK housing market to generate excess money growth, leading to inflationary pressures, leading to higher interest rates, leading to strengthen of the pound. When the UK housing market stops having this effect (i.e. it turns in this regard), then this process will work in reverse. I know I am being a little vague but the exact details are rather long winded. Maybe I could write a column on this topic called "How I am playing the UK housing bubble", or something similar.

 

In addition, to this (in my view) the UK consumer and government, has just about as much debt as their balance sheets can cope with. But that is another story....

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Tsssk. Let's hope that they give your pearls of wisdom a good sub-editing.

 

Amazes me that a master of so many hip corporate phrases and big financial concepts has such trouble with basic spelling and grammar.

 

Horses for courses I expect - being a working bloke I don't understand much about your world either.

 

The editorial process seems fairly robust hence I hope none of my typos get through.

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(Even) the Examiner isn't this dotty. I'm 99.9 percent certain that this is a joke thread.

 

The 0.1 percent is too scary to imagine.

 

I am posting in good faith. Also, since I started the thread asked for feedback I think it is polite to at least reply to all replies which is exactly what I am do now.

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As you don't seem to be regulated in the UK, or here, or be a financial journalist how can you be so sure about second guessing what our FSC think.

 

Last week I asked the FSC their view on my column and (in my view) they went a bit over-board in terms of the disclaimer requirements and suggestions on the type of content. In terms of the Investment Business Order 2004, Statutory Document No. 673/04, specifies the nature of newspaper editorial with regard to “the giving of advice” in paragraph 19, as follows:

 

Newspapers

19. The giving of advice (in the manner contemplated in paragraph 4) does not apply to advice given in a newspaper, journal, magazine or other periodical publication if the principal purpose of the publication, taken as a whole and including any advertisements contained in it, is not to lead persons to invest in any particular investment.

 

see:

 

http://www.fsc.gov.im/lib/docs/fsc/Publications/ibo2004.pdf

 

Hence my column would appear to fall out-side the remit of a licensable activity.

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Thanks for the suggestion I will add it to my list.

 

On public pensions I understand legislation on a "Manx supplement" (i.e. Manx state pension would be higher than the mainland) may be put forward. With private pensions I would like to say someone on Manx SIPP and Manx SASS, if I can find providers/structures where the kick-backs, set-up fees and running costs do not make the tax savings redundant.

 

 

 

I think you need to do some research before you start commenting on local affairs.

The Manx Pension Supplement has been paid since 1993. It is half again on top of the basic pension.

See IOMPA website Isle of Man Pensioners' Association.

Edited by Moghrey Mie

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How about trying to cover some of the issues raised in the fascinating special report on offshore finance "A place in the Sun" in the 24 Feb 07 edition of The Economist - and their relevance for the Isle of Man?

 

It raises loads of issues of relevance to the Manx economy that never seem to be debated very widely on the island.

 

For instance it quotes research to suggest that well-run offshore financial centres can actually boost economic activity in their larger near neighbours rather than diverting it.

 

It also suggests that costs of running such centres have increased - for instance through the higher cost of complying with the raft of international standards (some countries such as Tonga, Niue and Nauru have decided that all this is too much trouble and decided to quit offshore banking...) - and that OFCs must be well run to succeed in the future...

 

Much else is covered on the impacts of globalisation, transfer pricing, how to defeat 'tax cheats', how to maintain social harmony and avoid tensions with 'the locals' through investment in education/affirmative action in OFCs...

 

Lots to think about, both about the need to ensure that OFCs are seen to be stamping out corruption / tax evasion and about the opportunities opening up from flexible (but high quality) small economy regulation.

 

You have to cut through the sometimes frustrating style of The Economist. But it raises lots of pertinent issues. Enough to keep your column going for a year or more!

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Opting back in to state pension, ive opted out at the moment but cannot get any good advice on wether or not to opt back in.

 

I can sympathise with your situation but without knowing your exact situation I really cannot know. If there is a citizen’s advice biro her on the Island then I would ask there. Unfortunately it seems that no government office would provide you with such advice since it is deemed 'financial advice' and as such requires the person providing such advice to hold an FSC license.

 

 

I'm quite intrigued by the idea of a citizen's advice biro or even a citizens' advice biro.

Are you giving them away free?

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