Brrrrr. I’m writing this from the home office, looking out at a snowy field with 15 pregnant sheep in, feeling pathetically sorry for them and like I should go and take them some warm breakfast. Spot the person who is new to the countryside!
On the basis that I am also surrounded by two small people and school is shut, I will keep this brief!
This week we launched a new report, rather imaginatively called “Online Investing 2018”. As well as reporting some key industry stats and data, we shared detail on the testing we conducted with our 25 test accounts throughout January this year.
At the end of December last year there was £205 billion in online investment accounts held by DIY investors. That’s 3.9 million accounts. It’s still a rather blokey game and just 29% of clients are women. The adoption of online pensions is on the rise and the average account size held is £53,000.
As for what we made of the providers themselves, we call out AJ Bell Youinvest as Most Improved; Hargreaves Lansdown as Most Consistently Boringly Good; newcomer Moo.la for great use of video and clarity; Wealthify for a lovely online experience and Wealthsimple for an interesting approach to comms and telling a story. I’d also highlight evestor as a nice-to-use solution offering access to a human being adviser for those wanting a helping hand at times.
If most of these smaller brands make you nervous, Aviva’s online journey is very yellow, easy to follow, dull but very solid. I think it’s a decent DIY pension option. Just ignore their awful snail mail which is a relic from the 1970s.
If you or a friend is having a think about the upcoming end of the tax year, and you need to make a decision about your savings, this piece I wrote for today’s Mail shares my response to a reader question about where is the best place to invest.
Over and out for this week.
Have a great weekend