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Everything posted by Optobear

  1. Interesting the FSCS are reporting themselves as the "Compensation fund of last resort" http://www.fscs.org.uk/industry/about-the-fscs/ But they are clear that the total scheme can only pay out up to a limit of £4.1bn in a single year http://www.fscs.org.uk/industry/funding/ Odd that, given that Nationwide has £200bn of saver's money. £4bn wouldn't go far. I make it 2 pence on the pound from the FSCS if Nationwide fails. That makes me feel better about my ISA! Optobear
  2. Not sure, the Levy (ie the cost of operating the system last year was only £148m. http://www.fscs.org.uk/industry/funding/levy-information/2010-11-levy-details/ the year before was £156m odd because I thought that cost of the bail out was at least £200bn (cos that is the amount of money printed) and probably more like £600bn, so quite a big unexplained difference?
  3. All been said before: http://www.housepricecrash.co.uk/forum/index.php?showtopic=87807&view=findpost&p=1321482 and link to Daily Mash too!
  4. Took the blue pill? I hope I didn't. I don't think I did, I didn't intend to take it, but maybe I did? "the story ends, you wake up in your bed and believe whatever you want to believe", or to take the red pill, where "you stay in Wonderland, and I show you how deep the rabbit hole goes." Unless the blue pill you mean is one of those triangular shaped ones?
  5. Just noticed another great example courtesy of interestrateripoff http://www.housepricecrash.co.uk/forum/index.php?showtopic=155309&view=findpost&p=2803163 The Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) - what is its opposite? The Office of irresponsible budgeting and printing of cash (OIBPC)
  6. Is this the end of the Base Rate link? As others have said already, this marks the start of a decoupling between official base rates and practical base rates. My guess would be that if the banks stopped offering base rate link products, then within 2 years you'd find that 80% or more of all mortgages would be entirely decoupled from the official base rates. The government can try legislating market rates but that is like trying to hold back the tide.
  7. No, not an issue anymore. The banks did run out of reserves, the FSCS guarantee was worthless (because it isn't prefunded and was limited to £4bn), so the government stepped in and printed money. They've done it once, they'll do it again. They have no choice. Of course the bankers know that now, so they can take any risks they like, if the gamble works they win huge bonuses, if not, then the government print the cash and everyone sees their pounds devalued. Win / win for banks, and they know it.
  8. Does anyone know how to buy shares in BMW and Mercedes? Seems like those are companies with a lot of upside growth potential? 300,000,000 go out and buy a "3-series" then that is a lot of cash.
  9. Chef, how very kind. I am flattered, but why not actually send it to your MP, pose it as a question, I'd love to know if you get a response. Optobear
  10. Yes, clearly a concern, but isn't there a significant payout - no questions asked - if you are put away by the security services? Or is that only if you take the Cuban timeshare option?
  11. Why did you buy him dead? I am sure he was cheap in that state, but I mean?
  12. Yes, that is right. My local branch of Barclays were out of tin foil hats too today.
  13. Right, or the Treasury - grand title, grand building, suggests vaults full of Treasure.... in fact just a massive debt, the scale of which the human mind can't comprehend.
  14. Right to a degree? What degree? - I'll have an honourary doctorate in stating the bleedin obvious.
  15. I have some very nice ones - only £10000 each. But seriously - I think you need two things i) A large organisation or one with a verifiable track record ii) somewhere that is quite open about its prices. I've bought a small number - obvious things I found are that the person selling won't accept a cheque - so you'll either have to march in carrying quite large chunks of cash (paper) and walk out with shiny gold in your pocket, or pay a cheque in advance and wait until it clears. You've still then got to walk out from somewhere where thieves know that people walk out with gold coins on their person... I bought from a jeweller that advertises krugerrands via ebay. I think there is something called the Numismatic Association that is a trade body and the shop I used are listed http://www.numis.co.uk/bnta.html The issue with gold coins is that you don't really know they are genuine until you come to sell them! good luck Optobear
  16. Okay, so we've always known that many of entities in government are the opposite of what they claim Ministry of defence is really Ministry of war National Health Service is really National Illness Service Department of Work and Pensions is really Department of Unemployment But increasingly I'm starting to view most of government spending as the opposite of what it claims too. So £20bn on housing benefit is really £20bn given to landlords from taxpayers. £2bn of legal aid is really a way of giving £2bn to lawyers to enjoy a very comfortable standard of living (btw, I was surprised that the news media didn't point out that lots of lawyers will be having a lean christmas with cuts announced). £169bn Income support and £22bn family tax credit are huge subsidies to Tesco, Sainsbury, Asda, and Morrisons. Mortgage Support is for bankers, etc. If you stop and think about where the money goes you see that most of these benefits are in fact subsidies of people who don't really need it. So the biggest beneficiaries of housing benefits are the biggest landlords, the biggest winner from Income support is Lord Sainsbury... etc. you get the idea. Is it only me that is thinking this way? I've found it quite a startling revelation, and makes me look very differently at the media reports on cuts and public spending. Also, the ones I highlight above are all the super successful areas of the UK economy. Engineering, technology, computing etc that have all struggled don't get any part of those billions. No wonder they struggle. Optobear
  17. Gold coins can be nicked however... As to price, well for our house I think we've got a 2005-6 price - but so few equivalent sales as to make that difficult to judge. As to completions around here (Hampshire) if you look at www.houseprices.co.uk for our town you find that most transactions are in the range 150k to 250k with rather fewer larger houses and virtually no very expensive houses at all (apart from the odd £800k plus). It seems to me that transactions are occuring on flats, terraces, 3 bed semis, but not much else. Those are driven by kids, divorce, retirements. The larger houses are full of older couples who believe that although they paid £6k they can now expect £650k. That or people who bought in 2004, put in new kitchens and now expect £150k more because they are property developers!
  18. Interesting that it is the middle that is holding up. Is that public sector workers on national pay scales? What constitutes top end? How many bedrooms, etc? Optobear
  19. I do like the sound of no re-decorating. Getting into index-linked NSI (which I guess is what you've got) would have been a big advantage. Sounds as though STR has been a winner for you.
  20. Without prying too much. Do you thnk going STR has worked out better than going STR now? I know there are factors beyond financial - like is your new rented better than the old owned. But while it has been possible to put cash into forex, then back into sterling, buy gold, sell that, buy the stockmarket, buy BP at the bottom, etc, and return 250% on your STR, my guess is that few did that, and that most STRs have stayed largely in cash? As I say, I'm not trying to pry or in any way be critical, I've a gut feeling that I should have sold earlier - and that I've missed out, so I'm keen to know your experience of being an earlier adopter of the STR route. Optobear
  21. The whole idea of housing benefit is entirely bizarre. The government takes £20bn from taxpayers and gives it to private landlords. Why do they need to be given £20bn? It makes no sense. Many of the private landlords are very wealthy, why take from ordinary taxpayers to further enrich the landlords?
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