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Buying abroad could boom

Barclays says the number of Brits who buy property abroad will double to 4.4 million. It says 37% of people are considering buying a place in the sun. Spain is the most popular choice of destination, closely followed by the US and France. Just 8% are worried about paying too much for a property.

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Welcome for HIPs

Barnetts Solicitors has welcomed HIPs as a benefit to first-time buyers and potential cost cutter for customers. A spokesman says: “HIPs will make the whole home buying process more transparent by giving consumers more information upfront.”

Yorkshire donation

The Yorkshire has funded a guide dog puppy through its first year of life via donated mobile phones. Over 1,500 old phones were donated by the society’s staff and customers.

Derbyshire set to launch Salt on Monday

The Derbyshire is set to launch a separate stand alone brand called Salt on Monday.Offering near prime to heavy sub-prime, the products will initially only be available through a limited number of packagers, but the aim is to ultimately go direct through intermediaries.Three packagers are confirmed at the moment they include Abacus, Praxis and Pink […]

Net valuations

Hometrack has launched an online service allowing home owners and buyers to value a property to a level only previously available to high street mortgage lenders. The service could revolutionise the house buying process as the public can use the figures to negotiate on the price of a property or ensure an estate agent’s valuation […]

Strong dollar can be a powerful driver of UK dividend growth in 2015

By Robin Geffen, fund manager and CEO 

This year threatens to be a challenging one for UK dividend hunters. Last year saw an all-time record amount paid out in UK dividends — some £97.4bn, according to research from Capita Dividend Monitor. Yet as Capita also pointed out, out the biggest single factor driving the growth in the fourth quarter of last year was easy to identify: the rising US dollar. 

In our view, this trend is much more than simply a one-quarter phenomenon. It is actually the most profound issue to get right as a UK equity income investor in 2015. We believe that the US dollar will continue to strengthen significantly from its current level. This is due more to the US economy’s demonstrable de-coupling from the rest of the world than to a view on the UK. The US has a strong chance of tightening monetary conditions this year without jeopardising growth or de-stabilising its housing market. The same can unfortunately not be said about the UK.

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