The Sunday Times seems to be going nap on first-time buyers today; headlines include “We snared a fire-sale mortgage” and “Young investors make mistakes, so stop gloating and help us out instead”.

An article titled “200%: the true cost of commission” reminds us that when someone provides us with a service, whether it is financial advice, finding cheap car insurance or getting a mortgage, we expect to pay for it. But finding out exactly how much we are paying and when the fees stop can be almost impossible to understand because the details are hidden. And while commission was banned for financial advice in 2013, other types of payments that look very similar to commission are prevalent.

Refreshingly, James Coney offers some sincere career advice for any young person looking for a job: become a fraudster, since bank fraud is too easy — and we are all responsible.


The Mail on Sunday reports that the Bank of England’s chief economist Andy Haldane is seeking a tax boost for firms that make the economy ‘faster and smarter’.

They ask if banks will start charging savers and paying borrowers; they also examine what the prospect of negative interest rates means for savers and mortgage holders.

With the end of mortgage holidays in sight, they suggest what we can do and what might be the consequences of extending the break.


The Sunday Telegraph highlights the plight of older pensioners who are hostage to unaffordable life policies; they must pay thousands a year or forfeit the lot.

They follow this up with another article which describes no-way-out life insurance policies ‘written in another era’ as more Faustian than fair.

The paper reveals that 600 savings accounts are still failing to beat the current rock bottom inflation rate; some top high-street accounts are paying as little as 0.01% to unsuspecting savers.


It seems HMRC’s haul from inheritance tax investigations has hit a four-year high; experts say the complexity of the tax system is leaving families exposed to mistakes.

Something maybe worth remembering this week – “It’s good to have money and the things that money can buy, but it’s good, too, to check up once in a while and make sure that you haven’t lost the things that money can’t buy.”  (George Lorimer)

This ‘Rule of Six’ malarkey may grate a little – it looks like it’s ruined a long-planned celebration and reunion event for me, certainly – but in the scheme of things rubbish happens. I’d rather go through this than have had to live through the Blitz, so please err on the side of caution and stay safe.


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