Financial Planning and Geopolitics

12 May 2017

Historically, the end of the tax year is a busy time in a financial planner's calendar and it is good to report that April 2017 was no different for the team at Chapters Financial. Indeed, 2017 turned info somewhat of a vintage 'end of tax year/ beginning of tax year' month, despite the way Easter (and the school holidays) fell.

This note has to be set against a currently volatile geo-political climate. It won't have escaped many readers that there is much 'noise' in current times to distract and this can naturally (and from my past experience) make clients and companies defer decisions for their financial planning that they may otherwise have taken. Apart from Trump's interesting first 100 days in the White House, we have a UK snap General Election to complete and, of course, the French General Election that will focus many minds, both on the continent and further afield. The potential conflict position in Asia is of concern and these issues, amongst many others, are fascinating in their own right for some, but consuming for others. Delays in new legislation are an issue, but in this case, much that has been deferred is likely to reappear post-election if the current incumbents remain in power.

The following investment view link (updated every week ) on our website may be of interest to keep up to date. I also believe that this is another important reason why the consideration of a client's attitude and tolerance to investment risk is vital. A link to our Investment Risk Scale can be found here.

This raises the question of what good financial planning is all about and the long term nature of the services that we as financial planners normally offer our clients. Although individual moves, switches and trades might be transactional (and immediate), our recommendations are invariably for an evolving long term agreed strategy, aimed at meeting our clients' needs, such as income production, capital growth or both. We would note that customers usually buy once, but clients are for the long term, which is where our services add most value.

The geopolitical position and the 'noise' of the recent and coming weeks will be important in making or considering investment decisions, but in the context of long term financial planning these positions may not be as immediate as perhaps the press would want you to believe.

No individual advice is provided during this blog.

Keith Churchouse FPFS


CFP Chartered FCSI

Chartered Financial Planner

Chapters Financial Limited is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority, number 402899.