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Martin Lewis, 48, has expertise on a wide range of financial assets which includes pensions, mortgages and Inheritance Tax. However, he is often asked for his views on investing in the markets but refuses to provide guidance on this.
Recently, Martin was once again asked on whether people should invest or use savings accounts.
This is a loaded question and Martin addressed the difficulty in his response: “Okay, so look I think people need to understand I talk about savings but that doesn’t mean I’m anti investing. I invest personally, but it isn’t my expertise.
“The key difference is you put money in a savings account and your money is protected – you’re going to get your capital back, you’re going to get a defined amount of interest, you have surety.
“You invest in the hope that it will grow quicker than savings, but you have to understand that you’re risking the chance that you may lose some or even all of your money.
“They are not a direct comparison.
“There’s nothing wrong with investing if you’re going to invest over a longer period.
“I just don’t talk about it because it’s not my expertise, because there is no right answer.
“The only person who could tell you what’s going to happen in set in investing is someone with a crystal ball that works and that’s too expensive even for me.”
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As Martin noted, money held in savings accounts are protected up to certain amounts.
If money is held within a UK-authorised bank, building society or credit union and the company goes bust, the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) will automatically compensate the saver.
The compensation will be limited up to £85,000 per eligible person, per bank.
This rises to £170,000 for joint accounts.
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It is understandable that more savers may be looking to invest in the markets at the moment given that interest rates are at all-time lows.
This is largely due to the fact that the Bank of England has kept the base rate at 0.1 percent.
Retail financial firms tend to follow whatever the central bank sets and this has been evidenced recently by the actions taken by NS&I.
This week, the government backed institution announced they would be lowering the rates on a number of their savings products.
Martin also recently covered this, noting the shocking changes may heed strange economic reactions. He commented: “Now this has been the best buy for the last six months, it’s been the place savers have turned to get decent rates of interest.”
He went on to warn that the changes “may well be foreshadowing negative interest rates”.
Ian Ackerley, the Chief Executive of NS&I explained the change was made in response to the low interest environment the UK finds itself in.
In November, the Bank of England will make its next Base Rate decision and some fear that they may move the country into negative rates.
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