Tag Archives: Strategy

Don’t panic! A brief message to PM+M Wealth Management clients following the Brexit announcement

Whatever your views on this morning’s result, it has predictably led to some uncertainty and the one thing markets don’t like is uncertainty.  As I write the FTSE is trading at 6,190 having opened the day at 6,350 and having recovered from a low of 5,806 early this morning.  So we can expect some volatility in the short term!

You should bear in mind the following points:

  1. Our investment process involves regular portfolio reviews face to face.  Probably the most important issue we cover at a review meeting is to assess how much cash to hold on deposit and how much to invest.  We encourage our clients to hold sufficient cash on hand to ride out any storms.  It means you can sleep comfortably at times like this because you don’t have to sell when the markets are down.
  2. Not all your portfolio is held on the stock markets and we help you make sure you don’t have all your eggs in one basket.
  3. Sharp falls in markets can happen as a result of economic news or political crises.  The biggest gains can also can be just as unpredictable and often clustered together.  For this reason we recommend sitting tight during times of turbulence.  Missing the best gains can seriously affect your long term returns.

We’ll keep you posted on our views on regular basis over the next few weeks and months.   In the meantime, if you have any concerns please don’t hesitate to contact one of the team.

Tony Brierley – Managing Director, PM+M Wealth Management

PM+M Wealth Management is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.  

What Is Your Strategy For Clinical Negligence Services?

shutterstock_219074173It has been confirmed that the introduction of fixed recoverable costs in clinical negligence cases is still planned for 1 October 2016.  Whilst research shows that it has been more difficult for those on lower incomes to pursue claims, it is evident that there has been an increase from those on middle incomes.

There has been and will be much debate on this subject. My concern lies with how and indeed whether law firms are considering their strategy for delivering these legal services.

We have already seen a great shift in firms delivering personal injury legal services; downsizing, doors closing, focusing on other services, selling off books of WIP and of course those with deep pockets being able to purchase books of WIP and firms in their entirety.

If the limit comes in at £100,000 as planned, what does this mean for your caseload?  What percentage of your firm’s clinical negligence matters are below this threshold?  Do you actually hold this data?  For many, it could be as high as 80%, if not more. What does this mean for funding, staffing, space requirements to name just a few considerations?

Where we have seen PI firms succeed is where there is process and control with strong infrastructure.  Does your firm have this? If not, what is the plan?  Do you have working capital to throw at building the infrastructure in what is now a short timescale or are you prepared to take on additional external borrowing, if available, or inject additional partner capital? Cash is the answer here (as ever) if you want to succeed in the new world.

Success will also be built on readily available data on matters. The IT you have in place should be adequate to give you this information so that you can make quick strategic decisions. Economies of scale are going to produce the financial results you need for your firm to flourish and deliver the type of service you want to your clients.

Is now the time to get out of delivering clinical negligence services before the market is potentially swamped with firms trying to offload work that is draining their resources? Or are you ready to be a consolidator?

Yet again, we are about to watch significant change unfold in the profession and I wait with bated breath to see how firms react in the next few weeks – assuming they are proactive and not reactive.

Helen Clayton – Head of Corporate Services

Investing In Uncertain Times – Six Strategies To Help You Sleep At Night

shutterstock_210031072We’ve had a rocky start to the year on the investment front. Following a lacklustre 2015 markets are volatile. Concerns abound from the fall in the oil price to uncertainties over China’s growth rate and the level of public debt. Add to this the political dimension with the US election and a referendum on Britain’s membership of the EU and we have a potent mix.

So what should the investor do? We don’t possess a crystal ball but do believe that the positive economic outlook existing at the beginning of the year hasn’t changed. Markets simply reflect the prevailing sentiment and what we do need is a regular shot of optimism.

Here are 6 strategies to adopt for the next few months.

1. Hold sufficient cash – Work out how much you need for your immediate and foreseeable needs and keep that emergency fund on one side – whatever rate the bank or building society is offering.

2. Remember investing is for the long term – We don’t know when the next fall in the markets will occur or how quickly they will recover again.  We believe Warren Buffett has it right. Pick investments you believe will perform well in the long term and hold them.

3. Make sure your asset allocation is right – We still think that equities will outperform bonds but the current situation perhaps calls for some caution. So hold less risk assets in early 2016 than in 2015.

4. Increase the cash holding within your portfolio a little – This ties in with strategy 3. Returns on cash are still very poor but they will protect you in the event of a fall in riskier assets. Volatile markets create opportunity so holding more cash than normal now may give you the ability to purchase other investments at a low point during the year.

5. Invest in assets that provide an income –  The capital value of your asset is not important in the short term if you are investing for the long haul but at least you can see an income stream. Many equity income funds have stood investors in good stead over the recent past. Commercial property also looks more attractive than in recent years and provides a rental yield.

6. Phase your new investments – Setting out a regular investment programme means that you will buy additional assets at varying prices during the year. If you happen to buy when markets are down you get more for your money! It’s known as £ cost averaging and can significantly improve your overall return.

Our team at PM+M Wealth Management are here to help you achieve your long term financial goals and provide peace of mind. Contact Tony Brierley (tony.brierley@pmm.co.uk), Antony Keen (antony.keen@pmm.co.uk) or Richard Hesketh (richard.hesketh@pmm.co.uk) for further information.

PM+M Wealth Management Ltd is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.