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Posts posted by Quicken

  1. Hello,

    I am looking to invest a bit in silver, but am naturally keen to avoid VAT if possible. One interesting option seems to be the 50% silver British coins minted between 1920 and 1946. For example, this deal is pretty close to spot price for silver if I am reading the numbers correctly:


    5 kg is 160.75 troy ounces, and the spot price for silver is around £24.25.

    160.75*24.25 = £3,898.

    There doesn't seem to be a problem selling at a reasonable percentage relative to purer silver. Not saying this is the best place to sell, but they do have a calculator for different purities:


    Am I missing anything?

    I have heard people on here recommending pre-1920 coins, but I cannot see any online dealers selling them and I am not really keen on Ebay. Is there anywhere that does something similar to the above package in pre-1920 coins?

    Any help appreciated,

    Cheers :)

  2. I’ve just been doing some rough gold calcs – practically quadrupled in sterling terms in just 3 years  wish I’d had lumped (a lot) more in.

    2/3 years from now for it to do the same again seems a little far fetched though, it’d be like you say $6000, I’d guess the pound would be stronger (maybe) but that’s still a tenfold jump in just 5/6 years in GBP terms. I could see a new currency introduced or restricted trading being introduced if it goes over $3k.

    It’s certainly looking like a Huxwellian future in terms of these currency monoliths. Feed the populous junk news (x factor, hacking ‘scandals’) while hiding the atrocities in (places like you mention) Africa. Have the people got enough gall to revolt? It’d take China to topple or give in but I still think the nuke card is a trump card for the West (people are easily bought).

    How long before governments undertake massive tax grabs on precious metals? They are going to look ever more tempting the higher they get...

  3. Italy money supply plunge flashes red warning signals:

    Telegraph article

    "Real M1 deposits in Italy have fallen at an annual rate of 7pc over the last six months, faster than during the build-up to the great recession in 2008," said Simon Ward from Henderson Global Investors.
    The Italian and Spanish bond markets stabilised yesterday after coming back from the brink. News that US bond fund Pimco has taken advantage of the sell-off to accumulate Italian debt cheaply helped restore calm.

    The IMF has endorsed Italy's €40bn austerity package, though the measures are "back-loaded" with most of the pain in 2013.

    Hopes that eurozone leaders would deliver a "big bang" solution at a summit on Friday have been dashed after German officials said Chancellor Angela Merkel may not attend. Finance mininster Wolfgang Schauble warned against a "hectic" response, a way of saying Berlin will not be bounced into a decision. There is stiff resistance in Mrs Merkel's coalition to steps that drag the country into a fiscal union where sovereign debts are shared. German officials are drawing up possible plans to allow the EFSF to lend to countries such as Greece so that it can buy back its bonds in the market at a discount.

    However, Bundesbank chief Jens Weidmann issued a caustic critique of the plan."It has a high cost, limited use, and dangerous secondary effects. This discussion is going in the wrong direction," he said. He added that the ECB would not accept Greek bonds as collateral if Athens defaults. "It is not our job to finance insolvent banks, let alone countries," he said.

    Getting interesting...

  4. Why? Does it make you feel partly responsible for voting for said party in the first place ?

    It WAS the fault of ONE party. The only blame that can be levelled at the other two (main parties), is that they didn't raise any objections, but that hardly mitigates blame from the party THAT WERE IN POWER DURING THE WHOLE SORRY AFFAIR.

    Labour preceded over this mess, spent beyond their means (what a surprise), ensured lax regulation in the financial sector, and had the cheek to claim credit for it all due to Browns "prudence".

    What has the coalition done differently? PFI is positively thriving in the 'austerity' regime. See e.g.:




  5. LHA's are based on the local property market in privately rented property in Broad Rental Market Areas (defined geographical areas which have broadly similar rental markets). The only way to establish what the local market rates are is to gather information from the main people organising the local market, which are letting agents. They do gain info. from other sources such as private letting notices, newspaper letting notices, etc. but as the majority of the market is conducted via letting agents this tends to be the main source of info. How else could you establish a market rent without looking at the market?


    As ToW suggested in post #102, and as I have said before, they should do it by collecting data from all rental contracts. Why the complex bureaucracy?

  6. I only caught the very end of this...

    The financial guy (the older chap who often does the money programme section on saturday am....grey slicked back hair and glasses) was on the sofa will Bill and Sian

    The feature was something about how the UK population is not paying down debt, despite lower interest rates etc...and how the debt is increasing, albeit at a lower rate

    Bill pipes up "The BoE have said there could be 3 more years of pain"

    BBC Finance guys says "Yes, well I'm not surprised, given they have been so bad at controlling inflation"

    Camera swiftly moves off the Financial guy.....Bill and Sian look at each other worriedly.....lots of uncomfortable fake laughing and they do what the BBC does best and quickly chnage the subject

    I can bet the Financial guy is currently on the receiving end of a bollocking.....

    That will be Paul Lewis of Money Box:


    The last two times I saw him on Breakfast, he was enthusing over NS&I index-linked certificates.

    EDIT to say: I like the guy. He seems pretty straight-talking.

  7. ....as pointed out it's not just certain self certs ...what about those with fraudulent salary slips which they can 'buy' off the internet ....?..... <_<

    This wouldn't be a problem if all mortgage applications had to be verified against tax records. This would seem to be a simple way to massively reduce mortgage fraud, and IMHO it should be part of the FSA MMR proposals. I'm not holding my breath there though...

  8. This is my favourite for time on market with no apparant awareness of the wider market - not got PropertyBee at work so can't check, but it's something like 4 years with narry a change...


    That's a good one, and I'm sure there are many more extreme examples in terms of time on the market. The thing that tickled me in the original example was that they waited a year and a half and then, clearly realizing their selling strategy wasn't working, they changed A SINGLE WORD in the title (indicating something you could already see in the pictures). I mean why? It just beggars belief.

    @snowflux - It's in Rose Hill, which is a pretty rough area already, and the newbuilds do not look like they will be changing that any time soon.

    Wiki Page

    Recent News Example

  9. Fact 5: As for the structural deficit, this was only 3.5% of GDP when Brown left the Treasury in 2007, compared to 4% in 1997 and an annual average of 5.5% in the years 1992-1996.

    What was the increase in money supply in 1992, 1997 and 2007 vs. inflation within the private sector then?

    Given the total deficit was only about 6% in 1992 iirc, the peak of the 90s recession, i find a 5.5% "structural" deficit hard to believe.

    Yes. I don't know enough about the specific numbers, but I was hoping someone here could do a point-by-point demolition of that list.

  10. I found this comment on the article interesting. Any thoughts?

    10 facts which George Osborne doesn’t want us to know because they expose the fiction that Labour spent all the money:

    Fact 1: In 2008, the first year of the UK recession, seven of the eight European economies with a higher GDP per capita than the UK (Austria, Finland, Holland, Denmark, France, Germany and Sweden) also spent more as a % of GDP. The single exception was Ireland, which not so long ago Osborne held up as an example to the UK, and which has since suffered economic collapse.

    Fact 2: Average annual public spending as a % of GDP was lower in the years 1998-2010 (38%) than in the years 1980-1997 (40%) whereas average annual taxation was the same at 36 % of GDP.

    Fact 3: Public spending fell from 38% of GDP in 1997 to 35% in 2000. From 2000 onwards, the Labour government began to spend money on run-down schools and hospitals. Thus public spending increased to 39% of GDP in 2007 – and then to 45% in 2010, as the effects of the financial crisis took hold and the government rightly followed the Keynesian rule that spending increases should be counter-cyclical.

    Fact 4: Margaret Thatcher described Blair as “my greatest legacy” because he had rejected what she saw as Labour’s core principle of “tax and spend”. Accordingly, Gordon Brown kept to the previous Conservative government’s spending plans for the first 3 years. But they had been elected to improve neglected public services and so were committed to increase spending. Much of New Labour’s electoral success was due to its appeal to voters who wanted it both ways – better schools and hospitals but no tax increases. Likewise, much of the vitriol now directed at Gordon Brown comes from those same fools.

    Fact 5: As for the structural deficit, this was only 3.5% of GDP when Brown left the Treasury in 2007, compared to 4% in 1997 and an annual average of 5.5% in the years 1992-1996. According to IFS data, the UK has run a structural deficit for all but five of the last forty years. In fact, the last 3 Labour governments managed to earn enough to cover their spending for 3 of their 13 years in office, whereas Thatcher and Major only managed balance the books for 2 out of 17 years. Sure, austerity drones can blather on about economic cycles, but the fact remains that New Labour’s fiscal policies were little different from those of the Thatcher and Major governments.

    Fact 6: Brown is often criticised for failing to reduce debt during an economic upturn. Yet Labour reduced the national debt from 42% of GDP in 1997 to 35% in 2008 – when it was lower than in 11 of the 18 years between 1979 and 1997 and lower than corporate debt (250% of GDP) and private debt (70% of GDP).

    Fact 7: The national debt has been higher in 200 of the last 250 years than it was in 2010, when it was 52% of GDP. In 1945 it was 237% of GDP and yet Attlee's post-war Labour government was able to bear the costs of introducing the welfare state and nationalising the railways, the public utilities and the coal and steel industries. Maybe that was because in 1945 we really were "all in it together".

    Fact 8: In 2010, the UK's national debt was the second lowest of the G7 countries and, at less than 60% of GDP net of bank assets, was within Maastricht Treaty limits. It is expected to peak at around 73%. Germany is already above that level and is expected to exceed 80% in 2013. The debt levels of Japan and Italy exceed 100% of GDP.

    Fact 9: In 2007, Cameron promised to stick to Labour’s spending plans. Then came the financial crisis, the damaging effects of which he now chooses to deny – unlike Mervyn King, Governor of the Bank of England, who told the Treasury select committee that public spending cuts were the fault of the financial sector (March 1st 2011). But it isn’t surprising that Cameron is reluctant to blame the banks, since he had previously criticised Gordon Brown for regulating them too tightly – and more than half of the Tory Party’s funding comes from the City.

    Fact 10: Budget deficits are due to either excessive spending or an inadequate tax take. Since it is clear that the problem is not the former (Facts 1-9), then it must be the latter – which is around 36% of GDP compared to an EU average of 40%, and is likely to be further aggravated when taxes are cut later during this parliament to the benefit of high earners, corporations and banks.

    Yes, Gordon Brown failed miserably to rebalance the economy, re-regulate the financial sector, control consumer debt, reverse widening inequality and prevent asset inflation. But that he didn’t overspend is indisputable. Remember the nickname “Prudence” and the praise lavished on him by the Tory press? New Labour’s obsession with market liberalisation put it somewhere between mediocre and poor on the scale of (in)competence, but on the same scale, the present rabble lie on the far side of disastrous.

  11. I'm not sure why so many people with so little faith in the finance establishment are willing to put all their money on 'black'.

    Where's the catch?

    I have advised both my boss and my mother to move some savings into these, so I am pretty confident there is no catch.

    When I was talking it through with my mother yesterday, I mentioned that the appeal of the Certs represents a curious mixture of trust and distrust in the government/BoE. Trust in the government not to default; distrust in the inflationary forecast (expectation that inflation will be high for at least a year).

  12. <br /><br /><br />

    I always get confused with this, but I do know it's linked to this index:


    So let's take the month of March as an example

    March 2010 = 219.9

    March 2011 = 231.7

    How is the percentage for the first year of indexing calculated from those two figures? Ignore the fixed 0.5% bit addition for the moment as that's easy.

    231.7/219.9 = 1.05366

    That's your index linking over the year. So if you had 15k, then multiply it by the index linking value above to get your end of year one value:


    This is ignoring the fixed value as requested.

  13. Guys what is your motivation for these? Do you see the index going high and higher? Would you be happy with just the 0.5% if it didn't rise? Are you just happy at taking the money away from the banks?

    I got mine a year ago with the 1% bonus - with inflation as it is and the 0.5% on the new issues I'm not convinced this is a great deal.

    This was answered on the other thread. From the website:

    The index NS&I uses to calculate the returns on Index-linked Savings Certificates is the Retail Prices Index, known as the RPI. The RPI figure is different from the annual rate of inflation. Annual inflation is the percentage change in the index for a particular month compared with the same month in the previous year. So it should not be used as a guide to what your investment will earn in the future. The RPI figure, however, measures the variation month by month: it goes up if prices rise compared to last month, and down if prices fall.


    The return you earn is made up of two parts – fixed interest and any positive index-linking – which we add on each anniversary of your investment.

    We calculate the index-linking by using the RPI figures that apply to your Certificate at the start and end of each year of investment (not the monthly changes in between). If the index-linking is positive – ie if the RPI end level is higher than the RPI start level – then we add it to your investment. If the index-linking is negative (known as ‘deflation’) you won’t receive any index-linking. But don’t worry, we won’t reduce the value of your investment.

    We calculate the fixed interest separately at the rate that applies for that year, and add that to your investment too. You’ll always receive the fixed interest so your investment is guaranteed to grow in value year on year.

  14. Am in the same boat need to transfer money from an ISA to an account tied to a debit card.

    When does this offer finish?

    Am I right in thinking that the penalty is per year? Withdraw before the first anniversary and they punish you. withdraw a day or two after and you get the interest for that year? And so on?

    Or am I wide of the mark here?

    You are wide of the mark. From the website:

    Index-linked Savings Certificates are designed to be held for the whole investment term to receive the full compound interest. This is because the fixed rates of interest we pay increase each year during the investment term.

    But if you need access to your money you can cash in your Certificate early. Any return you receive will depend on when you cash in:

    During the first year

    You won’t earn any index-linking or interest, but we’ll pay you the full amount of your original investment.

    On an anniversary date

    We’ll pay you the anniversary value for that year, which will include any positive index-linking and fixed interest at the rate that applies for that year.

    Between anniversary dates

    We’ll pay you the most recent anniversary value plus any positive index-linking and fixed interest for each complete month since then.

    If the RPI figure has gone down since the previous anniversary, you will still receive the full anniversary value plus fixed interest for each complete month.

  15. The article only shows a higher _proportion_ of mortgages going to first time buyers, not a higher _number_ of them.

    It could be that richer folk with cash are not bothering to get big mortgages anymore. Can't tell from the article.

    It actually doesn't show anything about the number or proportion of mortgages going to first time buyers. As Matt Griffiths said:

    The increase in lower value properties on the market may be a general indication of a falling market, rather than first-time buyer activity. It also doesn't indicate who is buying these properties – there have been recent signs that lenders are favouring buy-to-let over first-time buyers, who also have a high footprint in these lower segments in the market.
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