What are the options for company investment?

Owners of businesses both large and small, are aware of the benefits of making the most of tangible business assets. Company money can be put to work equally hard.

Today, the investment options which have become available to companies are numerous and increasingly sophisticated. Because of this diversity it is now possible for a company to develop an investment strategy that is specifically designed to meet precise corporate requirements and needs. Currently, by investing in certain investments offshore it is possible to do so in a potentially tax efficient environment - the proceeds can be paid without the deduction of tax at source. However, most countries retain the right to deduct withholding tax on income from dividend and interest. It remains the investor's responsibility to properly account for tax however.

When selecting an investment strategy, companies have similar considerations to individual investors. For example, if the funds to be invested are required in less than five years a more conservative approach is appropriate. The level of tax liability applicable to the investment affects the investment returns – tax can be mitigated by arranging investments in as tax efficient a manner as possible. A further important consideration is the likelihood that capital will be required at short notice, perhaps because of unforeseen events – just as in our personal lives, the business environment can be unpredictable.

Details of some of the options available to companies are explored briefly below:

Offshore Deposits – Banks and Building Societies

Advantages Disadvantages
Little risk to capital values Interest can affect corporation tax liabilities
Interest bearing Limitations on access are applied for higher interest rates
Access at short notice Currency risk

Shares

Advantages Disadvantages
Potential capital gains and dividend / interest income High risk to capital values by investing in equity type investments.
Vast range of listed company shares There may be costs to hold this asset type
Varying degrees of liquidity – can be bought and sold rapidly Overseas and UK income and realised gains are subject to corporation tax

Collective Investments – Unit Trusts and Open Ended Investment Companies

Advantages Disadvantages
Potential capital gains and dividend income High risk to capital values by investing usually in equity type investments.
Vast range of fund choice There may be costs to hold this asset type
Generally liquid - can be bought and sold rapidly Overseas and UK income and realised gains are subject to corporation tax

Contact Keith Churchouse at Chapters Financial Limited to consider your company's objectives and needs further. We look forward to hearing from you.

The information contained within the website article is subject to the UK regulatory regime and is therefore primarily targeted at clients based in the UK. Other types of investment are available and you should consider these with your Independent Financial Adviser before taking action. We would also recommend that you check the tax position of an investment with your company's accountant before investing.

Please note that this is for guidance only and we recommend that you seek further advice from an Independent Financial Advisor before proceeding further. The Financial Conduct Authority does not regulate taxation and trust advice.