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Latest News

Holborn Assets Reviews – An Antidote to Fake News

26th April 2017

An antidote to “fake news” was earlier this year proposed by a professor from Cambridge University. See below for the full story. But fake news continues to be news in itself, with even the UK Government taking an interest: a UK select committee inquiry is set in September 2017 to publish a report on fake […]

Holborn Assets Scam Watch – April 2017

24th April 2017

Holborn Assets Scam Watch – a look at what scams are out there in the world of personal finance and beyond, and how to stay safe. Would you be fooled by a pension scam? In research commissioned by the UK’s Citizens Advice Bureau in 2016, it was found that three-quarters of us are confident that […]

Holborn Assets News – Don’t forget St George’s Day 2017

23rd April 2017

What is St George’s Day? St George’s Day is England’s national day celebrated on April 23rd every year. Who celebrates St George’s Day? In the UK, the focus for St George’s Day celebrations (if anywhere) is the pub. Most Brits might say that they are proud of St George, but generally Brits do not use […]

Are you ready for a Brexit Diet this summer?

19th April 2017

Brits face a summer of shrinking deals in the UK supermarket as the weak pound and Brexit price uncertainty continue. So if you are planning on dieting to get that perfect summer body, Brexit might have done you a favour – through the rise of “Shrinkflation”, the phenomenon by which food manufacturers have been reducing […]

Holborn Assets News : Weekly financial highlights from the UK

17th April 2017

Holborn Assets News reviews four snippets of UK personal finance news from this second week of April that highlight the need for expats (and their families) to keep their financial options open: UK housing market hits official doldrums Student loan interest soars with strong inflation Market-beating bond from NSI fails to beat inflation Royal Mail […]

Holborn Assets News – Average Size of UK Pension Pot soars to £50k

10th April 2017

The average UK pension pot has rocketed in value in two years to £50,000, according to research from financial providers Aegon. Behind the surge in saving is a new awareness of pensions amongst Brits brought about by the Government Pension Freedoms of 2015, in which a number of liberating measures were announced. The research also […]

April 2017: Holborn Assets Reviews the new HMRC tax changes for UK

7th April 2017

Here at Holborn Assets, the new tax year in the UK (beginning April 6th) is a time to take stock. The accounting clock has started again and, with it, come four bits of good news in the area of personal taxation – as well as bad news for BTL investors in the form of mortgage […]

Top 10 Tips to Finding a Great Financial Services Provider in the world of fake news

4th April 2017

In the beginning, there was news. Then there was “breaking news”. Then “viral news”, then “trending news” – and now we have “fake news.” “Fake news” has always been with us. It’s just a term for rumours that are being presented as fact. This has always happened. But now we’ve got the internet as everybody’s […]

Pensioners get jolt back to reality

2nd April 2017

As an April Fool’s joke yesterday, we reported here at Holborn Assets that the UK Government was, instead of taxing pensioners, making pensioners into millionaires, left, right and centre. We wish it were true. But the truth is that pensions are not only so tax-sensitive, but so varied nowadays, that professional help is the only […]

Shock State Pension Government Giveaway: find out if you’ve just been made a millionaire

1st April 2017

The UK Government has today on April 1st 2017 announced that it will be adding an extra 55% to all state pension payments – and, because the giveaway will apply retrospectively as well as cumulatively, an estimated 450,000 Brits A YEAR look set to become millionaires. Are you one of the many winners in the […]

Controversial new £1 coin comes out today in UK

28th March 2017

The controversial new UK £1 coin comes into circulation today (March 28th 2017). With 3% of old £1 coins being counterfeit, the Royal Mint calls the new hi-tech £1 coin “the most secure coin in the world”. Holborn Assets looks at the ins and outs of the currency changeover. What should I do with my […]

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) on UK Long Term Care

27th March 2017

Recently, we reviewed the UK Care Home Sector 2017. With this article we hope to answer your Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) on Long Term Care. The Biggest Question is – How do I fund Long Term Care (LTC) in the UK? It is a big question for more and more families. In roughly fifteen years […]

2017 UAE Motor Insurance Rules – New

24th March 2017

There’s all sorts of goodies that insurance companies will now have to provide to UAE motorists – but it remains a fact that new rules from the UAE Insurance Authority (IA) mean that over a third of UAE motorists are expected to pay more for their vehicle insurance this year. That’s because of a new […]

Holborn Assets Reviews the UK Care Home Sector 2017

20th March 2017

So have you got “The Big Dilemma” or “The Big Problem”? For most people, there are two giant practical issues with Long Term Care: Care Home vs. Home Care – The Big Dilemma Care Home Funding – The Big Problem This overview is intended to help you get some background before you dive in and […]

Electronically Traded Fund Bitcoin – Denied

15th March 2017

There was great excitement in the world of cryptocurrency Bitcoin, with a big decision being made on the first attempt to launch a Bitcoin ETF (Electronically Traded Fund). The US Securities and Exchange Commission has said it will rule on the £100m bid from Winklevoss Capital by March 11th – which is this Sunday. The decision […]

Holborn Assets Reviews the UK Spring Budget 2017

10th March 2017

What’s big? The main news is a “2% stealth tax” on self-employed Brits, with changes to the National Insurance Contribution system coming in next tax year. Personal Finance Income Tax Personal tax-free allowance rises – for the seventh year running – up to £11,500 this tax year. High rate minimum threshold rises to £45,000.  Inheritance […]

Top 10 Questions your SME should ask about Insurance

7th March 2017

There’s a lot of talk about how SME insurance can be expensive. But look at it this way: On top of everything else an SME has to pay every month, any cost looks expensive. You get to become ruthless with costs when you are running a business, so expenses which aren’t strictly necessary simply have […]

New UK Probate sliding scale – 58% of Brits to pay nothing

3rd March 2017

The UK Government this week announced changes to the way that “probate” is charged, with a new sliding scale coming in from April 2017 to replace the old flat fee system. And if you’re one of the 58% of the UK population with an estate to pass on that’s worth less than £50,000, probate won’t […]

Elite tips for buying a UK property

27th February 2017

With all the signs of a softening UK market for 2017,  Holborn Assets IFA and Mortgage Expert Jo Philips gives a whistle-stop tour of the procedure for buying a UK property. UK house prices this January showed their weakest growth for fourteen months according to the latest figures from the Nationwide Building Society. So maybe this […]

Altmann: the Final Word on cashing in your Final Salary Pension?

24th February 2017

by Michele Carby Former Pensions Minister Baroness Altmann has been part of what the Financial Times has called a “stampede” to cash in defined benefit pensions. After the value of cash offers made to her by scheme providers doubled between 2014 and 2016, Baroness Altmann said in December that she was tempted too by the […]

UK Government Proposes Final Salary Pension Rise Freeze

22nd February 2017

Are you one of the 11 million plus Brits with a Defined Benefit pension? Defined Benefit – or “Final Salary” – pension schemes could pay out less in the future under proposals published today by the UK Government.   The consultation paper published by the Department of Work and Pensions raises the possibility that struggling […]

Trump Determined to Axe Dodd-Frank Act

20th February 2017

Trump takes executive action against Dodd-Frank Act It hasn’t taken long for President Trump to follow through on a campaign promise “to dismantle the Dodd-Frank Act and replace it with new policies…” Just a fortnight after his inauguration, President Trump signed an Executive Order on 3rd February 2017 that many see as the opening salvo […]

New Easy Way to Check your National Insurance Contributions

15th February 2017

It is now a lot easier for Brits to check their National Insurance Contributions (NICs) thanks to a new HMRC website: What’s the big deal about NICs? National Insurance contributions are important because they relate to how much UK state pension people receive. Currently the rules state that: “To get the full basic State Pension […]

New Pension Advice Allowance – Don’t Miss Out!

13th February 2017

The UK Government has just tripled the amount you can take from your pension pot before retirement to pay for professional financial advice – from £500 to £1500. This is great news for anybody hoping to lay down a secure retirement, because it means you can get the ball rolling with a professional adviser far […]

The Business of Valentine’s Day

10th February 2017

It’s Valentine’s Day this coming Tuesday. And— outside of certain Muslim jurisdictions in which it is not celebrated —the annual day of romance is going to be big business, as usual. Valentine’s Day – The Figures The Valentine’s Day industry in the UK is worth around half a billion pounds. Over quarter of a billion […]

The Best Way to Plan for your Retirement

7th February 2017

Joe Capaldi, Senior Managing Partner at Holborn Assets targets the Pensions issue at the heart of the retirement planning challenge – and delivers the solution you need for peace of mind. Will you outlive your money? Will you, in other words, live longer than you financially planned for? The chances are you will . The last century […]

Top 5 Holborn Assets #AlternativeFacts

6th February 2017

In this article we would like to highlight some of the little known facts about Holborn Assets. Please note we mean “little known” not “alternative”, a term in use since January 22, 2017, for reasons well known to all. Holborn Assets can make you famous. We can help you grow organic food. We are members […]

The Lesson We Can Learn From 2016’s Celebrity Deaths

22nd January 2017

2016 was the Year of the Reaper as far as celebrities were concerned. We lost hosts of actors, musicians and artists at the top of their game. Many of the departed had made sure their vast fortunes would be passed on as they would have wished – like UK singer George Michael (whose sister is […]

Santa Claus In Shock £8Bn Debt

27th December 2016

Brits back home will have typically spent 44% of their December salary on Christmas, according to the Nationwide Building Society’s Christmas Spending Report. One in three pay for Christmas by taking out debt – whether overdraft or credit card. And one in five get lumbered for three months or more with paying off Christmas debt. Figures […]

How the FCA is Helping to Keep Your Pension Safe?

5th December 2016

FCA shows teeth with hefty fine for pensions boss The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) weren’t mucking about when they said this year that they would be cracking down on investment scams in the pensions sector. First Aviva got hit with a whopping £8.2m fine in October “for Client Money and Asset failings”. And now in […]

5 Tips to Pick a Decent Independant Financial Adviser (IFA)

24th October 2016

IFA stands for Independent Financial Adviser. The job of an IFA is to advise normal people on the best way to manage their personal finances across all products, including mortgages, savings, pensions, investments and retirement planning. The role of an IFA involves a lot of trust, so it is a shame that generally IFAs get […]

Investing? You need to know about “Open” and “Closed” investment architecture

21st October 2016

“Open” and “Closed” what? We’re talking about “Open” and “Closed” investment. These are types of investment “architectures” — the way, in other words, that the whole business of you buying an investment is handled by the professionals. There’s the “open” model, which offers higher flexibility but higher costs, and the “closed” model which offers less […]

Holborn Assets Tips – Three Financial Tips for a Worry-free Festive Season

18th October 2016

The winter festive season will be here before we know it,so now’s the time to give your personal finances the once-over. How are you fixed? Are you ready for what’s coming? Keep your personal finances in check over the festive period with these three tips: Tip 1 – Set a budget NOW Decide now where […]

Holborn Assets Mortgages – Bricks and Mortar; Should you Oughta?

13th October 2016

Thinking about getting into property? Is now the right time? If you’re a UK expat, you might be holding fast until the full impact of the BREXIT decision has played out across UK markets. And, certainly this week, Buy-To-Let (BTL) in the UK is looking even more fraught as an investment prospect, with a High […]

Holborn Assets on Life Insurance — it’s about your family, not you

10th October 2016

The Life Insurance sector in the UAE is growing at a rate of 11% a year (according to data experts And it’s about time this sort of growth was seen. In 2014, less than 1% of the UAE population had Life Insurance — compared to 9.2% in South Korea, for example, and 46% in […]

Holborn Assets Reviews UK Courtroom Blow for BTL Landlords

7th October 2016

There was bad news for Buy-To-Let (BTL) Brits yesterday (October 6th), with defeat in the legal battle against the onset of harsher tax legislation for private landlords beginning next year. The British High Court yesterday refused to grant permission for a Judicial Review of controversial Section 24 of the Finance Act (No.2 2015) which ends […]

Holborn Assets Explains The Seven Benefits of “Whole of Life” Insurance

6th October 2016

“Whole of Life” Insurance – Never heard of it? Most people don’t take out “Whole of Life” (or “Whole Life”) Insurance, so it’s not very well known. Far more popular is “Term” Insurance — which can be between five and ten times cheaper. What’s the difference, then, between Whole of Life insurance and Term Insurance? […]

Tax Implications of Financial Planning for South African Expats Living in UAE

4th October 2016

The bitter economic reality of South Africa in terms of virtually non-existing GDP growth, increasing crime rate, and allegations of “reverse discrimination,” have promoted a large number of young and aspiring professionals to look for career opportunities overseas. A significant number among this highly educated workforce from South Africa have found a new home in […]

Living Wills Just Got a Little Livelier

3rd October 2016

A new UAE law might make it possible for expats to specify in a Living Will that they do not want to be resuscitated in certain circumstances. But lawyers have yet to bash out the full implications of the new Medical Liability Federal Law No. 4 for the Year 2016, which has reportedly been approved […]

Holborn Compares Living in Abu Dhabi vs Dubai

29th September 2016

United by Growth Where would you rather live? Abu Dhabi or Dubai? The backwaters of the UAE or the front strip? Or is that putting it a little too simply? Abu Dhabi and Dubai have much wealth and beauty in common, despite Dubai being seen as the brasher of the two in character. What unites […]

Holborn Retirement Planning: Defined Vs Contributed Pensions

28th September 2016

There are two main types of workplace pension: Defined Benefit (DB) schemes. These are also known as Final Salary schemes. Defined Contribution (DS) schemes. These are also known as Money Purchase schemes. Workplace pensions run in conjunction with any private and/or state pension you may have. Defined Benefits (DB) schemes offer the benefit of a […]

Holborn Financial Advice: Can Pensions be fixed in the UK?

27th September 2016

Holborn Assets presents the first of three articles focused on the present state of the pension system in the United Kingdom, United States, and South Africa. We look at the relevance of these broken and burdened systems and how, if at all, they can be fixed. With some UK citizens finding that the pensions shake-up […]

Holborn Assets Explains the Wells Fargo Scandal

26th September 2016

Since its formation in 1852, Wells Fargo has established itself as one of the most iconic companies in the United States. The banking giant has survived two world wars, the great depression and the great recession, and managed to keep a clean sheet. In fact, the reputation of Wells Fargo has been so good that […]

Top 5 investment books you need to read by Holborn Assets

22nd September 2016

Spend just a little time reading up on investing and you’ll be amazed at the difference it makes to your confidence with your whole financial picture. After all, you stand to lose money in the long run if you’re not up to speed on the financial decisions you need to make. So it’s good to be prepared. […]

Heritage Day, the South African Way

22nd September 2016

Wherever in the world South Africans may find themselves on September 24, they will probably take a moment at least to acknowledge Heritage Day, even if they are unable to celebrate. On this newly created (1995) public holiday, South Africans celebrate their diverse cultural origins, beliefs and traditions, united as one nation. In the State […]

Structured Notes – The Good, The Bad and The Ugly

20th September 2016

Here at Holborn Assets, we often hear complaints about a financial product known as a “Structured Note.” Holborn Assets doesn’t offer Structured Notes. Structured Notes have got a thoroughly bad name nowadays. Respected website doesn’t mince words in branding them “a real stinker of a product.” However, there’s a certain glamour to Structured Notes […]

Effects of FATCA on Financial Planning for US Expats Living in UAE

19th September 2016

The liberal living environment compared to some of the other Gulf countries in the region, has attracted a large number of Western expats to the United Arab Emirates. Historically, the UAE has been a preferred destination for expats from the United States. According to Qatar-based BQ Magazine, there are over 50,000 Americans living in the […]

Holborn Assets Hosts Potential Future IFAs from Warwick University at Dubai Headquarters

19th September 2016

Dubai, UAE, September 12, 2016 — Twenty students from Warwick University, UK visited the offices of Holborn Assets, a global financial advisory group headquartered in Dubai, on the 6th of September. Many of the students looking to intern abroad felt that Dubai offers valuable work experience in the financial services sector. As September is the month […]

What about my pension post-BREXIT?

14th September 2016

The BREXIT decision posed two big questions for expat pension holders: Will my state pension be frozen? What will happen about my QROPS? Uncertainty still remains the key factor. The UK Government is categorically postponing any decisions about pensions until the invocation of Article 50(2) of the Lisbon Treaty puts the UK on a two-year […]

What Now Post-BREXIT for the UK House and Mortgage Market?

12th September 2016

What happened to disaster? Before the BREXIT vote of June 23rd 2016, catastrophe was predicted for the UK housing market. George Osborne said house prices could drop by as much as 18% if Britain voted yes for BREXIT. Respected financial rating agency Fitch said the housing market could take a dive in value as much […]

Gordhan Probe Puts Rand Under New Pressure

1st September 2016

  The intensifying political scandal centred on South African Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan could “buckle” the Rand to a value of R19/$ if he gets fired. That’s the news this week from South Africa. But what does that mean to South African expats working in the UAE? A volatile Rand is something we’ve all had […]

Holborn Assets Reviews: Sterling Vs. Gold In The Wake Of ‘Brexit’

24th June 2016

So BREXIT happened. After 43 years since its admission into the European Union, then known as the – European Economic Community (EEC), the UK has opted out in a historic referendum. Needless to say, the event has given rise to massive quakes, the likes of which has only just begun to permeate the global socio-political […]

USD as a World Currency – Part 1: Why is the US Dollar Still the Reserve Currency of the World?

23rd June 2016

It is well known that the US is the only country that can print money without control. But how do other nations of the world accept it? In this article, we will find out how (and why). Beginnings – The US dollar is Chosen as the Reserve Currency Seventy years ago, just as the tides […]

Big Bust or High Hopes? Holborn Assets Review the Global Economy

7th June 2016

The first five months of 2016 have been exemplified by large stock fluctuations, variable GDP and a shift in the global market structure. The world’s fastest growing economy has slowed, oil prices have taken a shock, and global debt crises have remained problematic. Faced with increasing odds, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) recently elected to […]

Chinese Real Estate Market: The Next Big Short?

6th June 2016

The Chinese economy and real-estate market have seen strong volatility in recent times, with the major stock index Shanghai Shenzhen CSI 300 growing to all-time highs, but also falling massively in 2015, only to be saved by government intervention. There is also a lot of talk about a Chinese real-estate bubble in the media, along […]

Holborn Assets Reviews : The Sharing Economy

2nd June 2016

The sharing economy is all the rage and chances are you’ve already partaken in its bountiful offering. For instance, take that Uber you hailed off your mobile. Or that reliable virtual assistant you hired online to find you a budget-friendly car. Or even that awesome free PDF-converter website that saved you time and money on […]

Queen’s Speech Soothes UK Pension Fears

26th May 2016

As a UK expat with a pension, you probably will not have been amused to learn that not even the Bank of England’s Chief Economist is “able to make the remotest sense of pensions.” So Andy Haldane revealed at a New City Agenda dinner on 18th May. The UK pensions palava seems to go from […]

Expats Excited by UAE Life Insurance Shake-Up

25th May 2016

UAE Insurance Sector Warming to Attention The media spotlight has been on UAE insurance ever since compulsory medical insurance began to roll out in 2014 courtesy of the Dubai Health Authority. And now consumers are starting to discover other forms of insurance. UK expats are asking: What’s out there to protect my future? What products […]

Holborn Assets Reviews : The UK Mortgage Market 2016

24th May 2016

BREXIT, BTLs and FTBs – let’s jettison the jargon! BREXIT, BTLs and FTBs – the 2016 UK mortgage market is full of drama and jargon this year, that’s for certain. Maybe you are involved yourself? Maybe you have a Buy-to-Let (BTL) property? Or are looking to get one? Maybe you have First-Time Buyers (FTB) in […]

DOs and DON’Ts of Life Insurance in the UAE

23rd May 2016

As a UK expat, it is likely you have spotted the excitement in the UAE life insurance sector. We at Holborn Assets report that, “the Dubai life insurance sector is lifting off at a growth rate of 10% a year and is crammed with over 60 competing insurers, offering great deals.” So we’ve taken in […]

Holborn Assets Reviews : Investing for Millennials

16th May 2016

Imagine that at 28 you just bagged the biggest bonus of your career and are wondering where to splurge. Add a second car to your collection? Maybe finally grab that Rolex Yacht Master that’s been teasing you in the mall? Or book that ticket to Ibiza for a sun-soaked beach adventure in the Mediterranean? How […]

A Guide to Income Protection (IP) Insurance

13th May 2016

Insurance has hit the news this year with the compulsory roll-out of medical insurance in Dubai set to achieve 100% coverage by July. An appetite for insurance in general has been whetted. UK expats want to find out how other insurance products could help them,but there’s so much to choose from! In many insurance sectors, […]

A Future Outlook on Gold and Oil – Worth Investing Now?

12th May 2016

Oil and gold are two commodities that run our world. Gold, on the one side, is a safe haven and an indicator of how investors perceive the economy, while the other – oil ‘black gold’– is the elixir that powers our globally economy, with profound uses ranging from propellant for cars and cargo vessels to […]

What the Ides of March means for AI in Financial Services

4th May 2016

What were you doing on March 15, 2016? Most people would reply that they were at work, followed by a round at the local pub, just like they spent every Tuesday before and after that day. Unbeknownst to many is that on this Ides of March, an ancient Chinese board game was being played out […]

Pensions Vs Buy to Let: A Comparison

4th May 2016

  As a UK expat in the UAE, can I even get a UK Buy-to-Let mortgage? Customers here at Holborn Assets are often surprised that a UK BTL mortgage is even an option for them. That’s because there’s been a lot in the press about expat lenders pulling out of the market altogether – making […]

Investing in Commodities – Why, How and Does this Suit Me?

3rd May 2016

There are numerous reasons why you should choose to invest in commodities. But what are commodities and how do they compare with other asset classes and securities? Commodities are tangible goods that are the basic buildings blocks of the global economy. They can be exchanged with one another and can range from goods consumed directly in […]

I Have $1M, What Steps Should I take Before Investing?

2nd May 2016

Firstly congratulations on making it to the million dollars mark. You can now begin your journey to becoming one of the 1,800 billionaires on earth today with some smart investing. Before you begin, here are five simple tips to ensure you are bringing in the best returns on your investments in the coming years. Make […]

Managing Partner of Holborn Assets, Reg Ormond, 16 year British Expat in Dubai, Gone at Age 50 from Sudden Heart Attack on Saturday April 23rd 2016

29th April 2016

Holborn Assets lost one of its most senior and respected managers Reg Ormond on Saturday, April 23rd, when he died of a heart attack.  As Managing Partner, Reg created ‘The Wealth Practice’, leading a team of nearly 20 people at Holborn Assets, responsible for the welfare of over 1000 clients. He had spent the last six […]

Investing in Buy-to-Let Properties – the Facts, the Costs and the Potential

25th April 2016

Buy-to-let properties have always been the vogue among alternative real estate investments. But you don’t need any prior experience to realise that property, in general, is an expensive asset to access. And there’s also a lot of talk regarding the recent changes made to tax and duty structures applicable to buy-to-let properties. What’s the deal […]

What’s New for UK Inheritance Tax?

25th April 2016

The law on UK Inheritance Tax (IHT) changes in 2017. The government is introducing a new tax allowance called a ‘transferable (or additional) main residence nil-rate band (RNRB)’ on top of the existing ‘general’ inheritance tax nil-rate band. As from 6th April 2017, UK homeowners will enjoy an extra £100,000 free from Inheritance Tax – […]

The Brexit – A Step Forwards or Backwards?

22nd April 2016

With just 60 days to go till the EU Referendum, or more commonly know as the Brexit, Holborn Assets has put together a video explainer on the Top 10 Brexit questions being asked  before the UK vote on the 23rd of June 2016. 10. When and for what reasons did Britain join the European Union […]

A Dummies Guide to Bitcoin and Blockchain Technology

18th April 2016

Bitcoin and Blockchain are two hot topics. Goldman Sachs says the Bitcoin’s underlying technology – Blockchain – “has the potential to redefine transactions” and can change “everything.” But what is Blockchain? And what has it to do with the cryptocurrency Bitcoin? Bitcoin: the digital currency Bitcoin is a form of digital currency, created and held electronically on your […]

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