This week has been a week of ups and downs in the world of finance and, more importantly, for sterling. It began with the pound taking a record-breaking slide against the dollar as Brexit finally took its toll on the financial markets.
The Prime Minister’s strong “Brexit means Brexit” speech at the Tory conference lead to the markets running scared and the pound taking a battering. It has since recovered slightly.
Inflation was also a hot topic as the Governor of the Bank of England, Mark Carney, said that prices will rise and that food is likely to be the first victim post Brexit. This announcement came at around the same time Tesco and Unilever also fell out over the price of Marmite (and other popular products produced by Unilever), with Unilever blaming Brexit for increased costs. Some accused Tesco of a consumer champion PR stunt, but whatever the story, Mr Carney backed up the fear that Brexit will likely leave us less in our pockets over the short term.
In the property world the Brexit jitters seem to be disappearing, as new figures from the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) showed that house sales rose in September.
After a very slow June and July, demand for new homes has risen for the first time in seven months and a lack of properties on the market has also had the knock-on effect of increasing house prices.
In pension news, the Financial Conduct Authority announced that thousands of people who are in ill health may have been mis-sold annuities and will be able to claim compensation.
An FCA review found that many people who are in poor health weren’t advised by some providers to shop around or that they would be eligible for an enhance annuity.
Annuities are financial products bought with a pension pot, which provides a monthly income for the life of the pensioner. If a person buying an annuity is in poor health, they may be able to get a better deal on their annuity by buying different annuity products offered because of their shorter life expectancy.
The FCA has now ruled that people who feel they have been mis-sold an annuity can seek compensation.