Dolphin Silkrdige FIDES FIDES

Markets are in turmoil - here’s why!

The Great Sell Off continues!

When in fog, tread carefully - particularly if you are not sure where the cliff edge is.

Another morning and another day of trading screens showing a sea of red.

As I write this the FTSE 100 is down 2.6%, the Hang Seng in Hong Kong is down 3.9% and the German Dax is down 3.1%.

Of the 21 major global stock markets, 19 are down on the same period last year.

The great sell off continues.

Why?
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It's a mix - part economic fundamentals, part market emotion as herding investors follow each other down a negative spiral, fearful of being left beached as the tide goes out, and part brute market forces, the major trading houses looking to make a profitable turn on share prices which they bet are not going up any time soon.

First, let's look at the economic fundamentals.
The engines of growth

There are three major economic blocks that markets watch for signs of turbulence - the engines of global growth.

They are America, China and the European Union, or more specifically the eurozone group of economies.

Each of these vital engines has some worrying rattles.

On Wednesday, Janet Yellen, the chairwoman of the Federal Reserve, America's central bank, said that the global economy was "less supportive" of US growth.

The American economy itself is in relatively robust health.

But Ms Yellen's warning has added to the general feeling that 2016 will be a year dominated by market bears - the march of the sellers not the buyers.

In China, economic concerns have been spiced by increasing market and currency volatility.

As the Chinese markets plunged, the central authorities first intervened and then withdrew.

This was overlaid by currency confusion.

Beijing appeared at first to want the renminbi's value to fall - stoking western business fears of a flood of cheaper Chinese exports - and then spent billions of dollars of its own admittedly capacious foreign reserves shoring it up.

Finally the eurozone, a group of countries not totally out of the financial crisis sick ward.

Industrial production in the three major economies - Germany, Italy and France - is down.
Unknown territory

The European Central Bank governor, Mario Draghi, has introduced negative interest rates in an attempt to encourage businesses and banks to invest rather than store money away.

But, as the Japanese central bank has found, the introduction of negative interest rates raises the question - what are central bankers so worried about they are writing new chapters of the Alice in Wonderland economic playbook many believe the world is now following.

First, trillions of pounds of monetary stimulus. Now, negative interest rates. Can central banks really be relied on support the global economy for the foreseeable future?

The markets are experiencing a major correction.

After the 2012 eurozone crisis - when markets fell into a doom loop of concern that the whole European project could break apart - exuberance returned when the nightmare failed to materialise.

Stock prices soared as central bank repair money washed through the system.

That exuberance is now being unwound, fed by souring global economic news.

Investors started worrying.

Were asset price rises based on fundamentals - that is, the performance of the business or sector being invested in - or were they being pumped up by quantitative easing, central banks printing money?

And if there was a bubble growing, do I, as an investor with billions of pounds of assets under management, need to call the top of the market and get out early to protect my position?

So, the sell started.

Add into this toxic mix the commodity price drop as global demand slowed faster than supply could be cut.

And the problem of bank stocks - caught in a low interest rate, high regulation world where profits are harder to come by.

And the reasons for the storm of selling becomes clearer.

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There are compliant options without the volatility - click here!

Source: BBC News - 11th February 2016


How many times does one need to get burned?

2015 big stock-market decline should have taught investors a harsh lesson!

What happened from August’s big stock-market decline should have taught investors and the realistic outlook is not as good as many are led to believe!

The stock market's late summer decline provided a lesson that shouldn't be ignored. Six years of rising prices caused many investors to forget the volatility that accompanies equity investing — until the S&P 500 Index declined 11% in seven trading days late in August to a level 12% below this year's high. This, along with the relentless negativity of the financial media, frightened investors into making $30 billion of net redemptions from stock mutual funds.

Read More!

The market's day-to-day fluctuations are inconsequential to long-term investors — a term which should be redundant but, regrettably, isn't. No one can make sense of the stock market's day-to-day fluctuations. Prices change instantly in response to news. Since no one knows if the next piece of news will be better or worse than expected, the next market move is always unpredictable, or "random".

The financial media will never say "We don't know why, but the market went down (or up) a lot today". Viewers and readers seek guidance and commentators must give insightful-sounding explanations for each day's market activity. But here's a news flash — they're just guessing. The idea that millions of investors made buy and sell decisions today because of some temporary, insignificant piece of news is silly. Sadly, investors mistake media noise for news, believing that the "experts" know what the future holds. Few talking heads saw the August decline coming and none that did predicted the subsequent rebound that erased it.

Using history as our guide, stock investors should expect an annual 10-15% intrayear decline and a 30% decline every five years — the consequences of living in an uncertain world. But since most investors don't realize that such declines are perfectly normal, they engage in panic selling each time it happens. They wait too long to get back in and fail to reap the benefit of the initial rebound. Repeating this mistake at regular intervals is the reason most investors' equity returns are a fraction of what the market freely offers. Unfortunately, during times of market volatility, an adviser's prudent recommendation to stay the course often falls on deaf ears.

If this recent decline was a little too stimulating for your temperament, you may have to reevaluate your investment strategy. Instead of attempting to maximize return, perhaps it's time to start combining equity and fixed-income assets in your portfolio to achieve a target rate of return that will enable you to achieve your financial goals. Most investors have no idea what their target rate of return should be. Consequently, they never know if they're on course to achieving their financial goals and are tossed to and fro whenever market volatility spikes.

Investing isn't just about maximizing return; it is also about controlling risk. One cause of panic selling is that Wall Street and its representatives sell products and investment strategies that promise the mutually exclusive benefits of high return and low risk; never telling investors that there is a direct relationship between expected return and risk.

Diversification is fundamental to risk management. Diversification isn't popular among performance maniacs because it eliminates the chances of making a killing in the market. But it also decreases the likelihood that you'll be killed by the market if your latest hunch doesn't play out.

Self-service is great for pumping gas and salad bars but not for dentistry and rarely for personal finance. The average American investor (including the average university graduate) is pretty close to illiterate in financial matters. The continued existence of hedge funds and 12b-1 fees is proof of this sad state of affairs. In my experience, portfolios of self-serve investors contain a collection of assets with no rhyme or reason behind their composition. Typically, they hold individual stocks and mutual funds that own similar, if not identical, assets that have performed well in the recent past. Most self-serve investors know a little about investing and financial planning but don't realize the magnitude of what they don't know — which will likely cost them more in the long run than what they're saving by not seeking professional guidance. This may be a self-serving promotion for hiring a financial adviser but that doesn't mean it's not true.

This latest episode of stock market volatility and the counterproductive panic selling of equity funds reveals the folly of focusing on the stock market instead of your financial goals. Instead of being distracted by market volatility and media pundits, focus on things that will enhance your long-term financial welfare — saving and investing as much as possible. A written financial plan that contains a target rate of return and incorporates your risk tolerance, time horizon and financial goals helps anchor your emotions when the market is volatile. Few investors have a written financial plan and most confuse volatility with permanent loss; which is why an unpleasant but perfectly normal 12% stock market decline led to $30 billion in stock fund liquidations.

There are better options!

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Beat the market!

Source: Marketwatch - 10th December 2015


Not such a happy new year for Asia!

China malaise, the first trading session of 2016 has resulted in more of the same as China share trading halted after 7% plunge!

A new year usually implies a fresh start, a chance to set things right and begin anew, however for many that could be a long and costly wait!

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More panic, more pessimism and more people selling their shares because of - well frankly, other people selling their shares.

So why did Chinese shares fall by 7% today, causing trading to be halted? And what does it say about confidence in the Chinese market and more importantly - the economy?

Here are four things you should know about the stock market falls in China today:
Weaker manufacturing data

This was what most analysts said was the reason behind why shares fell. Manufacturing data contracted again - for the tenth straight month. The figures are further demonstration of the ongoing narrative about China's economy, that state led investment into manufacturing is slowing down and that the economy is transitioning into services. China releases services data on Wednesday - which should show things are improving.
Circuit breakers come into effect

This was the first day that China's new "circuit breaker" came into effect, and that's why when shares plunged by 5% trading was halted by 15 minutes. When trading resumed, and shares continued to fall by 7%, trading was suspended altogether. The measures were created last year after the stock market crash in China, but only came into effect today. Circuit breakers in themselves aren't unusual - lots of countries have them for individual stocks, or for a few minutes - but it is unusual to stop trading altogether for a share fall of 7%. An indication perhaps of just how much the authorities want to avoid another crash.
Yuan weakens again

There was a sharp depreciation in the yuan just ahead of the plunge in Chinese shares. China cut the yuan's value against the dollar, making it weaker than 6.5 for the first time in more than four-and-a-half years. There's speculation that the People's Bank of China has abandoned trying to hold the yuan up against the dollar, which means it's signalling that it won't step in to shore up the yuan. There are concerns that this indicates money is flowing out of China, and that the fall could get out of control. Some investors may be worried about what would happen if the yuan continues to weaken - and the fact that policy makers are allowing it to weaken shows they're concerned about the economy's outlook too.
People are selling because people are selling

There's nothing like the herd mentality to get things started for the new year. Retail investors in the Chinese stock market are often driven by sentiment and tend to follow the crowd. When they hear of some bad news from brokers or their friends, and other people start selling - they start selling too. Falling prices attract more people to dump their stocks, and although shares are still above their lows, authorities will be keen to avoid the kind of share market crash we saw last summer.

So what do today's falls tell you about the fate of the Chinese economy in 2016? Well, nothing you didn't know already. China is slowing down, people are nervous and that means volatile trading for the rest of the year.

Happy New Year everyone. If the first day of trading is anything to go by, it is definitely going to be an interesting one.

There are better options!

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Beat the market!

Source: BBC News - 04th January 2016


FTSE 100 falls sharply at start of new year!

UK shares fell sharply in the first session of the new year, as steep losses in Chinese markets affected trading in Europe.

(Open): The FTSE 100 was down 113.77 points, or 1.8%, at 6,128.55, while in Germany the Dax index fell more than 3%.

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Earlier in Asia, trading in China had been suspended after markets fell 7%, triggering new "circuit breakers" designed to limit volatility.

One factor behind the fall was another weak manufacturing survey.

The Caixin/Markit manufacturing purchasing managers' index (PMI) slipped to 48.2 in December, marking the 10th consecutive month of shrinking factory activity in China. A figure below 50 indicates contraction.

The survey hit shares of mining companies in London, as China is a major importer of raw materials. Shares in Anglo American fell 7% while Glencore was 5.9% lower.

Confidence among investors was also hit by worries over rising tensions in the Middle East, with Saudi Arabia breaking off diplomatic ties with Iran.

On the currency markets, the pound fell 0.5% against the euro to €1.3506, but rose 0.14% against the dollar to $1.4757.

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There are compliant options without the volatility - click here!

Source: BBC News - 04th January 2016


Switzerland - European Union Agreement for Automatic Exchange of Information Signed.

According to a release by the European Commission...

Negotiations have been concluded on an ambitious new tax transparency agreement with Switzerland, marking a major step forward in the fight against tax evasion.

Under the new agreement, EU Member States and Switzerland will automatically exchange information on the full range of financial account information from 2018.

Thus, EU Member States will receive, on an annual basis, the names, addresses, tax identification numbers and dates of birth of their residents with accounts in Switzerland, as well as a broad set of other financial and account balance information. This means that EU residents will no longer be able to hide undeclared income in Swiss accounts to evade paying tax.

The Agreement will be signed following authorization by the European Council on one side and the Swiss Government on the other, both of which are expected to be before the summer.

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Source: European Commission


Spain - European Union Agreement for Automatic Exchange of Information Signed.

According to a release issued on 19 March 2015 by the European Commission...

Spain
FATCA reporting deadline extended. The Spanish Tax Authorities released an Order on 12 March 2015 extending the FATCA reporting deadline for the 2014 fiscal year to 31 May 2015.

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Source: European Commission


Isle of Man & Spain - European Union Agreement for Automatic Exchange of Information Signed.

According to a release issued by the European Commission...

Isle of Man - Spain
Tax Information Exchange Agreement Signed

On 3 December 2015, the Isle of Man and Spain signed a Tax Information Exchange Agreement.


The two countries shall notify each other through appropriate channels that the internal procedures required by each country for the entry into force of the Agreement have been complied with.

The Agreement shall enter into force after a period of 3 months following the date of receipt of the later of the notifications referred to above.

Upon entry into force, the provisions of this Agreement shall have effect:

  • for criminal tax matters on that date; and
  • for all other matters covered in Article 1 of the Agreement on that date, but only in respect of taxable periods beginning on or after the date of signature of the Agreement or, where there is no taxable period, all charges to tax arising on or after the date of signature.

The Isle of Man shall cease to be considered one of the territories referred to in paragraph 1 of the First Additional Provision of the Spanish Law to Avoid Tax Evasion (Disposicio?n Adicional primera de la Ley 36/2006 de Medidas para la Prevencio?n del Fraude Fiscal) of 29 November 2006 on the date on which the Agreement shall have effect.

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Source: European Commission


Andorra - European Union Agreement for Automatic Exchange of Information Signed.

According to a release issued by the European Commission

Andorra signs the Multilateral Competent Authority Agreement for Automatic Exchange of Information.

On 3 December 2015, Andorra signed the Multilateral Competent Authority Agreement on the introduction of the automatic exchange of information in tax matters on a reciprocal basis.

Andorra is the 75th jurisdiction to sign the Agreement.

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Source: European Commission


Jersey & Spain - European Union Agreement for Automatic Exchange of Information Signed.

According to a release issued by the European Commission...

Jersey - Spain
Tax Information Exchange Agreement Signed.


On 17 November 2015, Jersey and Spain signed a Tax Information Exchange Agreement.

Further details will be reported once the text of the treaty becomes available.

The two countries shall notify each other through appropriate channels that the internal procedures required by each country for the entry into force of the Agreement have been complied with.

The Agreement shall enter into force after a period of 3 months following the date of receipt of the later of the notifications referred to above.

Upon entry into force, the provisions of this Agreement shall have effect:

  • for criminal tax matters on that date; and
  • for all other matters covered in Article 1 of the Agreement on that date, but only in respect of taxable periods beginning on or after the date of signature of the Agreement or, where there is no taxable period, all charges to tax arising on or after the date of signature.

The Isle of Man shall cease to be considered one of the territories referred to in paragraph 1 of the First Additional Provision of the Spanish Law to Avoid Tax Evasion (Disposicio?n Adicional primera de la Ley 36/2006 de Medidas para la Prevencio?n del Fraude Fiscal) of 29 November 2006 on the date on which the Agreement shall have effect.

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Source: European Commission


HIKE IN UK STAMP DUTY LAND TAX (SDLT)

Time to re-think!

Stamp duty land tax (SDLT) on additional properties such as buy-to-let investments and second homes will be 3 percentage points higher than current SDLT from April 2016.

Corporate properties and properties in Scotland (which are subject to land and building transaction tax) are not affected by the new rules. The new rates will also not apply to caravans, mobile homes or house boats and properties below £40,000.

The government will consult on the exact policy details including a possible exemption for corporates and funds that own more than 15 residential properties.

In his Autumn Statement speech George Osborne said “people buying a home to let should not be squeezing out families who can’t afford a home to buy.”

Richard Lambert, CEO at the National Landlords Association, commented “the Chancellor’s political intention is crystal clear; he wants to choke off future investment in private properties to rent. The exemption for corporate investment makes this effectively an attack on the small private landlords.”

SDLT rates for additional properties:


 

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Switzerland - The end of EU Citizens’ Bank Secrecy in Switzerland

According to a release by the European Commission...

Ending EU Citizens' Bank Secrecy in Switzerland

In a press release following a vote on 27 October 2015, the EU Parliament adopted its stance on a deal with Switzerland for automatic exchange information on the bank accounts of each other's residents, starting in 2018.

An agreement was signed by the EU and Switzerland in May 2015 aiming to clamp down on tax fraud and tax evasion. Information to be exchanged includes not only income, such as interest and dividends, but also account balances and proceeds from the sale of financial assets.

The EU and Switzerland must now conclude the agreement in time for it to enter into force on 1 January 2017. The EU Parliament has to be consulted in this process, and the agreement also has to be ratified by the Swiss Parliament.

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Source: European Commission


No-where to hide with New Directives!

HMRC targets offshore tax evaders

HMRC is pressing ahead with measures to tackle offshore tax evasion, including a new ‘strict liability’ offence of hiding taxable income and gains offshore.

Included within the deluge of consultation documents published in the wake of the Summer Budget were a set of proposals aimed at tackling offshore tax evasion. Perhaps the most controversial of the proposed measures is a ‘strict liability’ criminal offence for those with offshore tax irregularities.

What is the new criminal offence?

The proposed new offence, which would only apply to offshore issues, could be triggered by:

  •  failing to notify HMRC of chargeability to tax;
  •  failing to file a return; or
  •  filing an inaccurate return.

It would apply only to income tax and capital gains tax initially, but it could be extended in the future to other taxes. Penalties arising could consist of monetary fines and/or a prison sentence of up to six months. The offence would be applied where the amount of under-declared tax for a tax year exceeds a threshold amount. The current proposal to restrict it to cases where at least £5,000 of tax has been under-declared in the year. This is aimed at ensuring that criminality will only attach to larger irregularities, however a concern remains that complex technical issues involving additional tax in excess of the threshold will fall to be categorised under the new offence.

It is also proposed that the legislation would not be applied retrospectively (i.e. in respect of offences arising prior to the introduction of the new measure). The usual defences of having taken reasonable care in preparing a return and having a reasonable excuse for failing to declare liabilities or filing returns will also apply. However, no other safeguards are proposed at this stage.

No intentions necessary

The key characteristic of a strict liability offence is that the prosecution does not need to prove deliberate intent. Hence, it could be applied where the taxpayer has merely been slow in getting his or her tax affairs in order.

HMRC is also reviewing the existing civil deterrents applicable to offshore evaders. A number of options are being considered for strengthening the sanctions available, such as increasing the minimum penalty from 20% to 30 or 35% of the extra tax due. Some may think it unlikely that these measures would encourage more taxpayers with undeclared income and gains to come forward voluntarily. However, arguably the proposed strict liability criminal offence may prove to be a more effective deterrent.

HMRC uses common law powers in bringing prosecutions for alleged tax fraud. However, it claims that this is a complex and time consuming business where proving intent can be difficult. These measures are aimed at reducing that burden, but it remains to be seen how effective they will be.

Going forward, we recommend that you bring any uncertainties you have over your offshore tax affairs to our attention so that specialist tax advice can be provided to ensure any irregularities are resolved.

Compliant and Regulated Solution!

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Compliant & Legal International Business and Personal Structures

Source: 24th Sept 2015 - Baker Tilly


BioSSL launches Face Recognition on their unique biometric web security platform.

Partnership with Ayonix, leading face recognition provider.

Everyone has a face and every face is unique. The integration of Face Recognition was the next step for BioSSL because mobile phones and laptops mostly have an integrated web camera, which makes the deployment of BioSSL Web Security cost effective.

Woman FRS BioSSL

The face can replace or be an add-on to the web password. The uniqueness lies in the fact that BioSSL creates a one-time biometric key in the same was as they do with their fingerprint verification and sends the data encrypted to the server. No data is locally stored and the data of the server is useless for hackers.

“Face Recognition does not replace the fingerprint or voice or iris. Every biometric technology has its pros and cons.  BioSSL’s top priority is to consult its customers to integrate different biometric solutions, separate or combined, but with the focus to remain omni-channel and protect the identity and provider fully against cybercrime, fraud or hacking. “, confirms Johann Caubergh, CEO of BioSSL ltd.

“BioSSL ltd has partnered with Ayonix, a Top 3 World Face Recognition algorithm provider. We work with the best of breed biometric technologies, thoroughly tested to protect the identity fully against cybercrime.

Ayonix is a dynamic company improving constantly the accuracy of the recognition.  Their advanced 3D modelling is so powerful that we did not hesitate to add their technology on the BioSSL framework.

The algorithm has been approved as the second fastest in the NIST 2014. NIST is the National Institute of Standards and Technology, based in the USA.

On top, the live recognition option will eliminate fake identities and increase the security level tremendously.”

More about BioSSL ltd

BioSSL secures online financial transactions, online platforms, confidential document or media access  and other high risk web based environments through fingerprint and/or face identification and verification.  BioSSL is the answer to criminal attempts to acquire confidential information by hackers.
No more need of complicated external devices.
Registration and authentication is done online through the standard web browser.  Verification ensures that the user’s identity is unique. See more at BioSSL.com and register for the demo face recognition.

For a limited time, invest in this world class company directly, See Video.

More about Ayonix

Ayonix corporation is a Global Face technology provider established in Japan.
The company was officially founded in March 2007 by four Japanese entrepreneurs who recognized the fast growing need in the field of biometrics. The core face technology was being developed since early 2000. By getting support of our government and industry customers, Ayonix have significantly grown and delivered a wide range of reliable Face applications to satisfy their needs.
Ayonix intensively delivered face recognition products for security industry by 2012.  Ayonix started to develop their proprietary world’s fastest 3D Face engine after 2012 and now Ayonix has developed the most accurate 3D engine called “Air-1 Engine”
Ayonix now provides more products which have more advanced features such as Gender and Age detector, Smile detector, sunglass detector, mask detector.

Ayonix’s face recognition products can be used for access control systems, surveillance systems, computer security, banking, entertainment, law enforcement applications, customer management system and many more.
Ayonix face recognition technology and applications are fully developed by Ayonix R&D team and Application team. Neither outsourcing nor third-party licensing is done. We take advantage of this to fast respond customer needs.
Latest face recognition tests (NIST 2014 vendor test) has proven that Ayonix is the second fastest company in the world and the fastest company in commercial face products See more at ayonix.com.


Big changes happening!

New dividend tax regime for investors!

The way dividends are taxed will change from 6 April 2016 and now HMRC has clarified the detail on the changes, who are the winners and losers?

The limited information provided by HMRC in the Summer Budget on the taxation of dividends, suggested the introduction of a dividend tax allowance, along the lines of the personal allowance. But, a new factsheet has now confirmed the intention is, instead, to provide what amounts to a zero-rate band for dividends.

Current rules
Under the current rules, dividends you receive come with a 10% notional tax credit; e.g. a £9,000 dividend comes with a dividend tax credit of £1,000 and your total income for tax purposes is £10,000.

Dividends are taxed as the top slice of income and the effective rates of tax on them, after taking into account the dividend tax credit, are:

  • Basic rate taxpayers: 0%
  • Higher rate taxpayers: 25%
  • Additional rate taxpayers: 30.6%

Proposed changes
From 6 April 2016, the tax rates on dividends will be:

  • Basic rate taxpayers: 7.5%
  • Higher rate taxpayers: 32.5%
  • Additional rate taxpayers: 38.1%

Furthermore, the dividend tax credit will be replaced with a £5,000 tax free ‘dividend tax allowance’, which is available to everyone regardless of their level of non-dividend income.

Dividends received in ISAs and pension funds that are currently exempt from tax will not be affected by these changes and will remain tax free.

When George Osborne first announced these changes in the Summer Budget, it was thought that the dividend allowance would exempt the first £5,000 of dividends and that this amount would not count towards your total taxable income. However, HMRC has now issued a factsheet which clarifies how the proposed changes will be implemented, and confirms that the dividend allowance will fall within an individual’s basic/higher rate tax band. Basically, whilst dividend income within the ‘allowance’ will be taxed at 0%, they will still be included in your total taxable income, and so may affect the tax rates for dividends received in excess of £5,000 and other non-dividend income.

Losers
Individuals who will lose out when these new measures are brought in, include:

  • Basic rate taxpayers with dividend income over £5,000, who currently pay no tax but will pay 7.5% on the excess over £5,000 from 6 April 2016.
  • Higher rate taxpayers with dividend income of £21,667 or more and additional rate taxpayers with dividend income of £25,401 or more.

Winners
Individuals that these new rules will benefit include:

Higher rate and additional rate taxpayers who have dividend income below £5,000, who currently pay tax at 25% and 30.6% respectively but will pay no tax under the new rules and taxpayers who currently have their personal allowances restricted because their total income exceeds £100,000. They may now be entitled to a full personal allowance if their income drops below £100,000 as a result of dividends no longer being grossed up.

What now?
If you have dividend income above £5,000, you should seek professional advice on how the new rules will affect you and whether any tax planning opportunities are available, such as:

Transferring shares into an ISA; gifting shares to spouse/civil partner.
Using alternative investment options such as offshore bonds, personal investment companies, venture capital trusts, investments that focus on capital growth rather than income.

Compliant and Regulated Solution!

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Compliant & Regulated Solution

Source: 17th Sept 2015 - Baker Tilly


Common reporting standards, is this the EU FATCA legislation?

Reality Bites with New Global Compliance!

All accounts held by Financial Institutions will be earmarked as existing accounts. All values and transactions after 1st January 2016 and will be subject to reporting, so it's either be Compliant or face the consequences!

Individual data will be collected, including tax residence and Tax Identification Numbers.

September 2017

First reports from early adopters will be sent to the local jurisdiction for onward transmission to the revenue body of tax domicile.

Financial Institutions Required to Report

Some financial institutions that may have a duty to report include:

  • Banks (including local banks)
  • Custodial institutions
  • Trust companies
  • Brokers
  • Insurance companies
  • Collective investment vehicles
  • Investment managers and funds>

It should be noted that certain non-reporting financial institutions under FATCA are reporting institutions under CRS.

Accounts That Are Reportable

The accounts that are reportable include accounts held by individuals and entities such as trusts and foundations.

An account held by an individual (and entities in some cases) would usually be a reportable account if the account holder is tax resident in a reportable jurisdiction. There will be special rules for ‘passive non-financial entities’.

Details and Information to be Reported
The following account holder details will be reported:

  • Name
  • Address
  • Taxpayer identification number (e.g. UTR number in the UK)
  • Jurisdiction of residence
  • For individuals – date and place of birth
  • For entities – the above for each controlling person
  • The account details
  • The financial institution’s details

The following financial information will be reported:

  • The account balance
  • Interest, dividends and sales proceeds from financial assets
  • The applicable currency

Financial institutions need to be able to identify the tax residence of each and every one of its account holders, and have the ability to report the necessary information to the relevant tax authority.

Last Chance Saloon

A number of European jurisdictions have voluntary disclosure programmes running and the OECD is encouraging member states to introduce them prior to 2016. Make no mistake, the wealth of information that will be available to tax authorities is immense.

Reviewing Client’s Arrangements

With such an incredible flow of information mistakes may well be made and past mistakes highlighted. Clients should look at current arrangements, not with a view to getting around reporting - that is not possible or legal - but ensuring that past arrangements are simplified, avoiding mistakes and misunderstanding. Clients will not be aware of what is reported.

Take for example a UK Resident Non domiciled client. The remittance basis of taxation is very complicated, past mistakes to an extent were not visible as reporting requirements were minimal. CRS changes all that and clients should review their arrangements.

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Compliance is a must!

Source: 14th September 2015 - SEB International Life Assurance Company Ltd


Concerned about Tax issues? You should be!

Tax mitigation needs to be compliant!

Global Tax Transparency

FATCA, CRS, European FATCA

Compliant International Business & Personal Structures

Understanding (Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act) FATCA and having a comprehensive FATCA compliance program is essential for financial firms to limit non-compliance risk and meet obligations with relevant (Intergovernmental Agreements) IGA's. The US has made inroads on the Exchange of Information front and tax havens like Switzerland have declared a willingness to meet or even exceed (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development) OECD standards in this area. The Common Reporting Standard is the latest building block of regulation in the march towards a global automatic exchange of information. In the meanwhile, it is clear that the (European Union) EU is keen to develop its own version of FATCA. Its chosen way of doing this is to extend the Administrative Co-operation Directive.

For fully compliant & legal solutions, contact us now confidentially to discuss your needs!
International Enquiries: +44 (0)2071 938981 or Email: mark@fidesgroup.net

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Compliant & Legal International Business and Personal Structures

Source: Offtax.com - Dirk De Wolf - Posted on 29th July 2015


Uncertain markets lead investors to Multi-Asset funds

Time to take action!

Uncertainty in markets leading investors to Multi-Asset funds!

Multi asset inflows jumped in June, as increased volatility in markets caused investors to leave asset allocation decisions up to fund managers.

Latest statistics from the Investment Association showed mixed asset fund net retail sales were £404m in June, the highest level since July last year.

The sector was second only to the Target Absolute Return sector, which had net retail sales of £445m.

Daniel Godfrey, chief executive of the Investment Association, noted that strong inflows into these sectors showed, “investors left it to fund managers to decide on asset allocation in uncertain markets”.

Meanwhile, net retail flows into equity funds tipped up slightly to £874m from £802m in May.

Less optimistically, fixed income flows suffered for the second month in a row, with £198m worth of net retail outflows.

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Beat the market!

Source: Kathleen Gallagher | FTAdviser 29th July 2015


UK Investors see 2015 gains wiped out as markets fall

Chinese stock markets lead a global retreat in share prices, suffering their worst day since 2007

Investors in the shares of Britain's biggest companies have been nursing losses of more than £150bn over the past two months and now in the red for the year after the FTSE 100 index dropped to its lowest level in 2015.

The index of the largest London-listed companies has fallen 8.4% since its record high in April.

Mining and oil shares have been particularly badly hit by shrinking appetite for commodities, particularly from China, where the stock market has crashed almost 30% from its peak.

On Monday, the FTSE 100 closed 1.1% lower at 6,505.13, putting the index more than 60 points below where it finished last year.

"We've had a number of issues to contend with, including the situation in Greece and concerns with the numbers coming out of China," said Richard Hunter, head of equities at Hargreaves Lansdown, the investment manager.

"Low volumes also tend to exacerbate volatility."

The Chinese stock markets led a global retreat in share prices Monday, suffering their worst day since 2007 and inflaming fears about the overall health of the world's second-biggest economy.

The authorities in Beijing have struggled to manage an exodus of equity investors, with bans on large share sales and numerous trading suspensions only serving to heighten anxiety about the stock market's stability.

Investors' nerves are also being tested by the uncertain timing of a rise in interest rates in the UK and the US, ending seven years of ultra-low rates.

"Performance over the long term is pretty good; we've had a pretty good run with quantitative easing," said Kit Juckes, global macro strategist at Société Générale.

Nearly 1,200 stocks on the London Stock Exchange lost value on Monday, compared with a total of 333 that rose.

The opening bell in Wall Street did little to calm sentiment, as US markets also opened lower.

The Dow Jones fell 0.5pc to 17,482.61, the S&P 500 slipped 0.4pc to 2,071.97 and the Nasdaq dropped 0.7pc to 5,053.37.

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Source: Marion Dakers - Telegraph 27th July 2015


BioSSL integrates Card_Lab’s unique fingerprint sensor card in their online platform.

Web Security at your fingertips!

BioSSL today announced a collaboration with the Danish innovative powered card company Card_Lab that will add Card_Labs new dual interface Biometric Bank Card with integrated fingerprint sensor to the BioSSL unique secure platform to offer a complete, unique and fully secure financial platform.

Card_Lab, based in Denmark, is a developer and manufacturer of innovative powered cards and technology, and considered world leading within microelectronics and powered cards development and manufacturing.

“This card is the perfect match for BioSSL”, said Johann Caubergh, Managing Director of BioSSL Ltd.  “The omni channel concept of BioSSL becomes complete. Magnetic stripe, contact or contactless, the innovative Card_Lab biometric enabled card is the solution to secure online transactions and can be used as an offline security for shopping.  On top of this, Card_Lab is known for securing contactless cards from hacking, and enable tokenization on a Dynamic Magstripe.”

BioSSL are the first company to offer HTTPS fingerprint security without storing the image or scan locally.  The system provides a unique defense against system hacking.
The information on any platform is highly sensitive and even when the platform is already secured with username and password, with BioSSL - security is complete.  Join BioSSL's future here.

With a Card_Lab card and BioSSL verification, the customer has both online and offline security of their assets and full privacy protection.

More about Card_Lab

Card_Lab is dedicated to enabling card manufacturers, card issuers and their customers to take optimal advantage of the technological developments in miniaturized low power electronics for on-board integration in ISO 7810 cards.
Card_Lab focus on eliminating credit card fraud, assure full privacy protection and offer highly secure products to the access control market and financial industry. Furthermore, Card-Lab provides these products in a format that works with the existing infrastructure.

Tapping the expertise and knowledge of leading researchers, industry experts, and engineers Card_Lab focus on developing new secure and convenient functionalities, as well as effectively bridging the gaps between the front lines of technological research, the supply chain and the market.
The research and development has led to the release of Card-Labs newly updated ISO 7810 compliant Biometric enabled card with the Fingerprint AB secure fingerprint swipe sensor. Card_Lab has during the last 2 years developed an extremely power efficient fingerprint recognition algorithm for the card that can come with a choice of interphases ranging from dynamic magstripe, contactless chip, EMV and display. More on www.cardlab.com

“Our positioning is that of a technology and solution provider to the industry, ranging from OEM sale of individual technologies, to development and manufacturing of customer ordered complete solutions”, said Managing Director, Frank Sandeloev.

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Join BioSSL’s future here


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