Staying safe in this volatile financial climate
If you have been watching the news or gone past the corner shop, no doubt you have seen the headlines about the worrying state of countries’ finances. In the last couple of weeks there has been a great deal of uncertainty in the Euro zone with Greece, Spain and now Italy all getting mentions in the media.
We in the UK have had major banking computer system failures, scandals of rate fixing and questions being raised leading back to the highest offices of government. With all this swirling around the media, where does this leave our precious savings and mortgages? More importantly, is anywhere safe?
Some questions we just can’t answer, but what we can offer are some simple tips to stay safe and hopefully avoid the stings of this volatile financial climate.
The Financial Services Compensation Scheme is the UK’s compensation fund of last resort. The scheme can pay compensation if an authorised financial services firm is unable to meet its financial obligations. From 31 December 2010, the deposit compensation limit is £85,000, per person, per authorised firm.
Some authorised firms operate under a number of brands. So you may think you have your savings spread across a number of providers but in fact they could still be under the same authorised firm and therefore only £85,000 of your total savings will be covered.
There have been a number of mergers and acquisitions among banks and building societies in recent years so it can be difficult to keep up with who belongs to who. To find out if your financial institutions share an FSA registration visit www.fsa.gov.uk/bankinggroups
However, there are still a lot of choices out there with many people having the choice of banks as well as local independent building societies on their high streets.
Nowadays it is easy to shop around. All the 47 building societies have websites detailing their savings, so even if they aren’t local to you they are only a click away.