Taking advantage of the increased savings allowance
If you are considering your Individual Savings Account (ISA) options, the good news is that the permitted contribution allowance will be extended for investors over the age of 50 from 6 October this year.
If you are under the age of 50 you will also be able to take advantage of the increased allowance from 6 April next year.
The overall ISA limit will increase to £10,200 (up from £7,200), although the maximum tax-free entitlement will remain unequal for those depositing savings and those investing in shares. You will be able to invest up to £10,200 in a share ISA, whereas the maximum cash ISA deposit will be £5,100.
Cutting the time taken for annuity transfers
The pensions industry’s ‘Options’ initiative has delivered significant improvements in its first three months of operation, cutting the time taken for annuity transfers between providers signed-up to the Options initiative to an average of just eight calendar days, compared to a pre-Options pilot scheme achieving an average transfer time of 31 days. This improvement of over three weeks will see annuity policies processed through Options being set up much more quickly. The system is designed to speed up the exchange of information and funds as part of the annuity transfer process, including those carried out under the Open Market Option (OMO). Timescales are expected to improve further over time as refinements are made and more providers start to use the system.