2020 has been a turbulent year so far due to the impact of Covid-19. Thankfully, Pax & AskPaul have been extremely busy helping our existing and new clients navigate these difficult times. Since the middle of August, the advisory and support teams are back in the office on a partial basis and we are incredibly proud to say that we have maintained 100% functionality at all times.
The third quarter of the year saw most of us coming to terms with a global pandemic and settling into the “new normal”. Starting Q3 2020, equity markets had rebounded off their lows of March and April but were still negative for the year. The S&P & Down Jones were both in high single digit negative territory while Europe was down closer to 12%.
Thankfully, due to a very good summer, the markets continued to rebound strongly and are now all in positive territory. At the time of writing (15/10/2020), The Dow Jones has gained +0.68% % for the year the with the S&P 500 up +9.59%. The Technology heavy Nasdaq is up a phenomenal +31.1
The performance of technology stocks was the big story of the summer. Robust earnings reports from companies such as Amazon, Apple, Facebook, Microsoft and Google helped propel the overall market into positive territory. If you think about it, it all makes sense, we were all shopping online, using the cloud to work from home and spending hours browsing Facebook/Instagram on our iPhones!
Although the stock market performed well over the summer, there is no denying disconnect with the underlying economy. Q2 GDP figures were some of the worst on record and it is obvious to see most of the businesses around the world are struggling to survive. World governments continue the tug-of-war between wanting to fully re-open their economies but also needing to suppress the virus. This war looks set to continue well into next year. The coming months will tell if the business can survive sustained lockdowns. Markets will be looking for unwavering support from world governments to help the business through the prolonged crisis.
Webinar series for Fund performances of Zurich, Aviva & Greenman
Back in March, Pax started a fund Update webinar series with some of our biggest fund providers, Zurich, Greenman and Aviva. The objective was to provide updates on fund performances directly from the Investment Managers & offer peace of mind to our cleints during these difficult times. David O’ Meara from Greenman, Ian Slattery from Zurich & Suzie Nolan from Aviva focused on analysing the current conditions, provided detailed insights on the performance of various Investment offerings from each provider along with explaining the current fund position & what it means for the associated stakeholders/ fundholders.
Here is a playback of all the webinars in case you missed it:
There has been a large focus on COVID, Brexit, Health & Housing in the 2021 budget.
The top-line results for the BUDGET 2021 are:
Fuel is going to cost you more. The carbon tax has gone up 7.50 a tonne & the same will happen every year out to 2029.
Changes to motor tax and VRT will also increase bills for those with high polluting cars.
On housing, the help to buy scheme has been extended. There’s also €500m to build 9,500 new social housing units in 2021.
State Pension Qualifying Age to remain at age 66
A 50c increase in the price of cigarettes but alcohol has been left untouched.
For Tourism and Hospitality, the VAT rate has been cut to 9 percent.
Money has been put aside to support businesses that have had to close because of COVID.
It is a broad budget with lots in it. Read the entire Budget 2021 commentary by Jim Power HERE
Have you considered Cashflow Modelling?
Cashflow Modelling is the process of assessing your current and forecasted wealth. At Pax, we use the CashCalc software, which allows us to input all the expected inflows (income) and outflows (expenditure). It then helps us build a picture of your finances through your life which will allow you to reflect on your current financial position relative to your preferred position.
This will empower you to make provision or act accordingly to ensure you achieve your financial goals in the future. The cash flow model will give a detailed picture of your assets, investments, debts, income, and expenditure, projected forward, year by year, using assumed rates of income, inflation, and interest rates to show how your finances will look up to age 100.
As part of the financial advice process, we determine your attitude to risk and then we use this expected growth rate to ensure your expectations are realistic. The charts that CashCalc produces help to highlight any shortfalls in your existing financial plan which can then be addressed earlier.
Contact us to hear how Covid has impacted your finances
As the COVID-19 situation evolves, we want you to know that we are here to answer any questions you may have. At Pax & AskPaul, we want to help you prepare your finances to respond with confidence & understand the impact that this may be having on your investments. We understand how important your money invested with us is to you. We encourage all our clients that have not availed of our regular reviews to book an appointment and get the products that you hold with us reviewed. This is to understand if any of the criteria used to finalise those choices you made with us in the past have changed due to updates in your personal and financial circumstances.
Of course, if you have any concerns or queries please do not hesitate to contact your dedicated paraplanner or financial advisor. We are here to support and guide you through this difficult time.
Pax is the Latin word for peace… We are here to provide peace of mind for you and your financial future.
We hope you and your family stay safe during the coming weeks.
We offer a financial planning service that is built around you.