Nothing romantic about the recent situation, but perhaps some hope?

01 February 2021

Gaining real information about what is happening in our rather topsy-turvy world is not as easy as it once was. For reference, amongst other websites, I find www.reuters.com provides what I believe to be balanced updates, both for news and for global market commentary.

Chapters Financial is not responsible for the content of external websites

If you care to tune into social media, the noise of opinion, and indeed fake news, can be deafening, misleading and sometime dangerous, asking that opinions are confirmed without good evidence. The economic news across most mature global states is not great, and more on this can be found on our latest Investment House View here: https://www.chaptersfinancial.com/private-clients/chapters-financial-investment-house-view

However, we have moved into February 2021, the month that features Valentine's Day, in this case in lockdown, which may be rather muted in comparison to years gone by. Perhaps rather un-romantic.

But there is hope for the future, although seeking out better news can be trying. We have received many contacts from clients at the beginning of 2021 who have enquired about pension, ISA and investment fund values, having decided not to ask too much in the latter months of 2020, with the press reporting big market falls in March 2020. We have not seen market volatility of this magnitude since the global economic crash of 2008.

It is interesting to note clients' relief, even surprise, when providing up to date values. In the words of one client, "The statements look healthier than we expected". Great news, which brings hope for their future financial planning objectives.

Holding tight on existing investment positions when markets see significant volatility is usually recommended, with many fund values now having returned to close on their positions this time last year (2020). Selling when a holding has experienced a decline in value can crystallises losses, and if the sale is sentiment led (rather than a specific need), this is not normally recommended.

Investment planning, pension planning and investment planning are normally about the longer term, and by this we mean a minimum of five years plus. Short term volatility is to be expected, and part of the financial planning process is understanding the client's attitude to investment risk, and ability to accept losses. Managing expectations is vital.

If you would like to consider your pension, investment, and financial planning further as we look ahead to what 2021 holds, then please contact the team at Chapters Financial in Guildford.

No individual advice is provided during the course of this blog.

Keith Churchouse FPFS

Director

CFP Chartered FCSI

Chartered Financial Planner

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