25% Levy On Overseas Pension Transfers Has Tax Advisors Scrambling To Find Loopholes

When QROPS – that’s Qualified, Recognised, Overseas Pension Transfers to you and me, were first introduced in 2006, it proved to be an unexpectedly popular piece of legislation.

In the last, “last” Spring Budget, Chancellor Philip Hammond acted swiftly and decisively to introduce a 25% charge on UK pensions being transferred overseas, which came into effect the very next day. Read more

The World Bank Releases Latest Guide To Remittances Prices Worldwide

Remittance Prices Worldwide (RPW), a subsidiary of the World Bank, has released its quarterly report on the costs of sending money across major remittance “corridors”.

Since September 2008, RPW has been monitoring the costs of international transfers, partly as a means to measure the progress of different regions towards global cost reduction objectives and targets, such as the G20 Commitment, which seeks to bring the average global cost of sending money abroad to less that 5% of the total sent. Read more

How To Move Money Out Of Russia

As of 2013, the Russian Government introduced fines to Russian nationals on any transaction where money was sent to overseas bank accounts. The fines could range from 75% – 100% of any transfer to a foreign account if the transfer did not go through a Russian bank account. Those most affected were people renting flats in foreign cities or those that received payments for freelance work from non-Russian firms. The thought process behind these fines, was that it would help the government in their quest to stop capital flight and fight corruption. Read more

Payment Services Directive 2 Explained (& An Infographic!)

Call it bad timing, but no sooner had the European Union delivered the first Payment Service Directive (PSD), to provide a legal foundation for the introduction of SEPA, that’s the Single Euro Payments Area, which effectively created a single market for payments across the European Union, covering credit transfers, direct debits and cards, when the payments industry entered possibly its most “disruptive” period ever. Read more

Can I Really Manage My Finances From A Smartphone App?

This guide is brought to you by The Money Cloud, where you compare the best rates for sending money overseas offered by top authorised brokers and money transfer agencies.

Remember when all you would hear during the ad breaks for your favourite television programme would be “there’s an app for that”.

This was a few years ago now, when apps were brand new and the likes of Apple, Google and Samsung wanted you to learn all about these mysterious new widgets that could solve your everyday problems at a cinch.

If we were initially sceptical, we certainly took to them in the end, but the trouble was, for every Tinder, Citymapper, or Uber, there were too many apps, rushed out by companies desperate not to miss out on the next big thing, or designed by Silicon Valley geek squads, that simply didn’t cut the mustard.

They were either too niche, too complex, too badly built, or simply released to act like Trojan horses, sneaking their way onto your phones and accessing your personal data to sell on to advertising companies.

It may have taken financial services institutions longer than most to come to the app party, but in fact, we should be thankful for that.

Banking and personal finance apps can now make a genuine difference to our lives, for the better. Here’s how. Read more

Top 5 Luxury Holiday Destinations in 2017

It’s hump-day, and budget day, so perhaps it’s time for a welcome bit of escapism.

With the end of the first quarter of 2017 rapidly approaching, if you haven’t started planning where to spend your major holiday for this year, here are 5 luxury destinations you might want to consider.

It’s well worth downing tools for five minutes and indulging yourself, if only for the smile it will put on the faces of your children, wife, husband, partner, and you!

Playa Paraiso, Cuba Read more

How To Use The Money Cloud To Transfer Money To Malaysia

At some stage of our careers, we all dream about what it would be like to work from a different location. Could it really be possible to swap the grey skies of London for South East Asia, for example?

The answer, of course it is yes, it’s more than possible, and it’s a great way to broaden your horizons and learn all about a new culture, plus relocating abroad could also be a boon for your business or career, too!

If the opportunity does cross your path at the right time, a spell abroad could be a highly desirable move.

But there may be all kinds of other reasons why you might want to send money abroad to Malaysia. You may be a Malaysian living overseas who wants to send their money back home to relatives. You may be a business paying a Malaysian supplier, or setting up an office there. You may be paying for a holiday in advance. You may be paying for tuition. You may be buying a property there.

Well, we can’t find you a flat in downtown Kuala Lumpur, but we can help you on the currency side – by showing you how easy is it can be to transfer money overseas.

Worked Example

Let’s say you need to transfer some money to Malaysia and complete a worked example. Read more

Top 5 Tips When Buying Property In France

Many British people every year choose to buy a property in France because of the wonderfully relaxed lifestyle France offers. The French have a strong appreciation for the good things in life and many consider them to be among the most cultured people in the world. They have good food and good wine and a more laid back style of life than in the UK, but there are things you need to consider when buying property in France. Read more

The Financial Services Compensation Scheme Explained

Back in August 2007, the UK experienced its first run on a bank in more than 140 years. TV crews rushed to film long queues of deposit holders outside branches of Northern Rock, at the time the 7th largest ranked bank in the UK in terms of assets, as fears grew that the bank and mortgage lender had run out of cash, and would allocate pay-outs to their customers on a first-come first-served based.

The Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) was designed precisely to ward off such an event, which could all too easily have a domino effect – sentiment is a very powerful force within the financial markets – and when people lose faith, big banks can topple in the face of hysterical demand, Mary Poppins style. Read more

5 Cities To Relocate Your Business To If Brexit Is not For You

If the thought of running your Fintech challenger, digital startup or indeed, any other kind of business in a post-Brexit Britain is just too horrific, there are plenty of places in Europe that will welcome you with open arms – provided your Europhile credentials check out, of course.

Here are 5 recommendations below – feel free to share yours with us – and of course, when it comes to arranging moving money abroad, we will be more than happy to help.

Lisbon

Read more

London & Hong Kong Financial Bodies Join Forces To Support Global Fintech Innovation

The UK’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and its Hong Kong equivalent, the Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) have signed a co-operation agreement that will promote information sharing between the two regions, and introduce a referral system that will make it easier for approved, UK based fintech startups to set up operations in Hong Kong, and vice versa. Read more

6 Payments Apps That Are Great For SMEs

After trialling the product for some time over here, Square, the US based payments provider startup founded by Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, has finally launched in the UK.

Square, which floated on the New York Stock Exchange in November 2015 at a valuation of around $6bn, provides independent traders with a means to take card payments using a reader- and it will retail over here in the UK at just £39.

It got us thinking about other payments apps that are valuable to startups and SMEs, and in that spirit, we present 6 of the best we could find! Read more

BREXIT: HOW WILL IT AFFECT THOSE LIVING OVERSEAS?

Although we don’t quite know how the UK economy will change as a result of Brexit, what we do know is that many of the news sources are focusing almost exclusively on how those living in the country will be affected. But how about those living abroad? British expats, EU residents, and even those living elsewhere in the world are beginning to ask how they might be affected by the result of the referendum, and want to ensure that they’re doing everything they can to protect themselves, and their money, at this time.

Business as Usual for UK Expats

If you’ve waved goodbye to drizzly England and taken up residence on sunnier shores, don’t panic. You’re certainly not alone – an estimated 1.3 million Brits live on the continent thanks to the free movement laws within the EU – and despite what some scaremongers are saying, it’s very unlikely that you’ll become an illegal immigrant overnight. While we can’t predict the future, it is suggested that the UK will enter into some sort of agreement with the EU. Think about Norway, for example. Although they are not a part of the EU, British citizens are still able to live and work in Norway without the need for a visa.

Perhaps the biggest concern for Brits living abroad is money transfers. If you’re receiving a UK salary or UK pension, unfavourable currency exchange rates can have an impact upon day-to-day life. But depreciation is nothing new. In fact, the pound was actually lower against the euro in December 2008 than it is following the referendum. People overcame this by using dedicated FX services such as The Money Cloud who can provide big savings on international money transfers; it’s no different this time around.

Good News for EU Residents

If you live in another EU state and have been thinking about coming to live and work in Britain, experts are saying that you will still be able to do so. ‘It will still be possible to employ personnel from EU member states’, says Omer Simjee of Irwin Mitchell Solicitors. There may be a little extra work to be done, and a few more ‘administrative costs’, according to Simjee, but it is expected that emigration from EU states to the UK for work purposes will not be significantly affected by the result of the referendum.

A Boost for the Developing World

Many countries around the world have voiced concern that Brexit will not only affect the European region, but elsewhere, too. However, it is possible that the situation will be beneficial to many of these countries, particularly those in the developing world. If the majority of UK trade is shifted from the EU, it is likely that the Commonwealth nations will be a major focus. Countries such as India, Kenya, and Pakistan could benefit significantly. Fortunately, services such as The Money Cloud make it easy to send money abroad, and receive money from abroad, providing the best currency exchange rates for trade.

By Emmanuel Addy – Emmanuel has over 12 years’ experience of developing partnerships in the FX/digital payments sector. He has also worked alongside Huw Jenkins, in money transfer comparison since the sector began before consolidating his experience to co-found The Money Cloud.

Offshore Money: The Good, The Bad And The Economy

Following the leak of the Panama Papers, offshore banking – and its capacity for exploitation by the rich – has been hitting headlines more than usual. Moreover, just before the 2016 anti-corruption summit – which took place in London at the beginning of this month – a large group of the world’s top economists put their names to a letter which called for an end to tax havens. Read more