Good morning and welcome to your Morning Briefing for Tuesday 28 February, 2023. To get this in your inbox every morning click here.
New CEO for Octopus Investments
Octopus Investments, part of Octopus Group, has appointed a new chief executive to lead its retail and institutional fund management business.
Benjamin Davis, a 12-year veteran within the Octopus Group and current CEO of Octopus Real Estate, will succeed Ruth Handcock as of today.
Octopus Investments has also announced its plans to invest £50bn in the people, ideas and industries that will change the world, by 2030.
Consumer Duty questionnaire
Advice firm Lamb Financial is planning to launch its questionnaire on the Consumer Duty next month.
The questionnaire was initially set to be launched last year, but had to be postponed as the firm looked to refine it.
MM Meets Sophie Kennedy, EQ Investors
Sophie Kennedy was working in a William Hill betting shop across the road from BestInvest’s offices.
“They used to come in and gamble their salary, and I got introduced to a few of them,” she tells me when we meet in a central London wine bar.
“People say you make your own luck, but that was my introduction to BestInvest. And I joined the company as an analyst.”
Kennedy remained there until 2015, before being approached by John Spears — the founder of EQ Investors.
Quote Of The Day
The Chancellor likely has less fiscal room for manoeuvre than recent headlines might suggest.
– Isabel Stockton, senior research economist at the Institute for Fiscal Studies, warns that making permanent budget tax cuts or spending increases will be harder to justify.
New analysis of Freedom of Information (FOI) data by Quilter shows that over the last five years only an average of 123,000 people per year have made Class 3 National Insurance Contributions (NICs) which allow them to fill historic gaps in their NI records and receive a higher state pension.
People aged between 45 and 70 who have gaps in their NI record are most likely to be impacted by the upcoming rule change and should act now
5 April 2023
Under normal rules it is only possible to fill gaps in an NI record up to six years after the year in question, but people have until 5 April 2023 to go back an extra ten years
The rule changes mean that 2016/17 would normally be the earliest year in which NI records could be filled in 2022/23, but until 5 April 2023, people can fill in gaps all the way back to 2006/07
Further analysis of another previous FOI submitted show that over the last two years on average only an additional 45,000 people have made Class 3 NICs for each of the last five tax years
You can claim the new State Pension at State Pension age if you have at least ten years National Insurance contributions and are: a man born on or after 6 April 1951 or a woman born on or after 6 April 1953
According to the most up to date data available from the DWP, as of March 2020, 34% of the over 11 million people who receive the Basic State Pension did not receive the full amount equating to nearly 3.8 million people
Around 805,000 people don’t receive the full New State Pension equating to 55% of the nearly 1.5 million people who receive this type of state pension
In Other News
Gresham House Ventures has bolstered its investment team with the hire of Grant Paul-Florence as director of investments.
With decades of investment experience working with early stage, growth and mid-market businesses, Paul-Florence will provide further senior deal and portfolio management resource to the team.
His previous investments and board positions include healthcare technology company CM2000 and automotive software as a services business Clifford Thames.
Paul-Florence joins Gresham House Ventures from BGF, a private equity firm focused on small and mid-sized businesses in the UK and Ireland, where he led the London investment team.
Prior to this, he was head of intermediate capital at Octopus Investments and has also held private equity roles at AAC Capital and Levine Leichtman Capital Partners.
Paul-Florence was previously head of corporate development at logistics company Freightliner Group.
He started his career as a chartered accountant at PwC and gained experience in its corporate finance team.
Goldman Sachs has lost its way (Financial Times)
Payments firm Klarna posts smaller Q4 loss, eyes return to profit (Reuters)
Cost of living: Grocery inflation hits new record high of 17.1%, data shows (Sky News)
Did You See?
Andrew Aldridge, Partner at Deepbridge joins Kimberley Dondo to discuss how can advisers can be more tax efficient with investment portfolios and the benefits of investing in life science startups.