Turning Lead into Gold

Date Published:27/11/2008

There was much speculation in the press as to the content of Alistair Darling’ s Pre-Budget report. One thing is certain; the measures to be announced will impact on all of us.

We have heard that inflation has fallen from the recent high levels of 5.2%. This is good news. Further good news for borrowers is the recent reduction in interest rates from 5.75% 12 months ago, to the current level of 3%.

Everyone remembers the recent 1.5% reduction.

There is a general consensus of opinion that interest rates are likely to fall further over the next 12 months.

Whilst for borrowers, once fully passed on, these rate reductions are most welcome. However, for depositors, these reductions in interest rates may not be so welcome.

Here at Ferry Financial, we have recently written a paper explaining to our clients, and other professional advisers, how the financial crisis, which has become known as the ‘The Credit Crunch’, actually happened.

It is widely acknowledged, even mentioned by Mr Darling in his speech, that it all started with sub-prime mortgage lending in America but you may like to know how this widened to such a global crisis with large and well known banks becoming insolvent, global share prices falling, house prices falling with repossessions rising, investment fund bankruptcies and a whole host of other global problems including a global recession.

There have been stories of how Wall Street turned ‘lead into gold’. This is discussed in our paper and you may be interested to read about this.

In summary, it revolved around segregation of investment schemes so that certain investors in theory had more protection against loss than others. These investments ended up being classed as top grade investment quality, even though the investments in the scheme were at best, lowest grade investment quality. We now know that these schemes did not work!

In the middle ages, European and Arabian alchemists tried to turn common metals, such as lead, into gold. They even spent much time searching for the ‘philosopher’s stone’, supposedly an essential ingredient for this process.

Needless to say, these alchemists never managed to achieve their goal although, it is worth noting that some exceedingly clever nuclear physicists have since managed to convert one chemical element into another.

If you would like to receive a copy of our paper, please contact us and we will be delighted to add you to our mailing list.

By the time you read this, Alistair Darling’s pre-budget measures will have been fully reported and we will all be able to see how these should be of immediate benefit.

There will of course be a repayment of these measures over time but with some good advice and management of financial affairs, you should be able to ensure that you make the best possible use of these changes, whatever they are.

My advice to investors is, as ever, to seek good quality professional advice, request a copy of our paper and thoroughly review your own investment portfolio requirements.

balanced stones