The Share Centre calls on all parties to consider the importance of personal investors in their manifestos

With the publication of manifestos expected imminently The Share Centre is calling on all political parties to consider the needs of personal investors when compiling their policy promises.

With the publication of manifestos expected imminently we are calling on all political parties to consider the needs of personal investors when compiling their policy promises.

It is widely recognised that individuals are typically not saving enough for themselves and their family’s financial futures. Therefore, it is important the next Government supports personal investors in their endeavours and does more to encourage a healthy culture of long term saving and investment.

Following research undertaken among its customer base, we are calling for all parties to make three commitments:

  • Continued support for the Individual Savings Account (ISA) and more broadly a commitment to stability in the tax and incentives which impact savings and investments
  • Improving financial awareness with a commitment to increase provision within the National Curriculum including consideration of a Financial Awareness GCSE
  • Improved access to capital markets for personal investors following a period since the financial crash where the number of quoted companies on the stock market has halved

Commenting, Richard Stone, Chief Executive, said:

The key issue for personal investors is for stability and certainty in the tax regime. The taxation rates and incentives to encourage savings and investment have been regularly tinkered with by respective Governments which leaves personal investors unsure of whether their savings and investments will continue to be treated in the same way in the future. We are therefore calling on all parties to commit to provide stability in the tax and incentives for savers and investors so that they can save and invest with certainty and confidence.

To encourage saving and investing Government needs to play a more active role in giving personal investors confidence. We are therefore calling on Government to increase the level of financial awareness throughout the education system in particular, potentially through the introduction of a Financial Awareness GCSE. With the Child Trust Fund (CTF) product, launched by the Labour Government in 2002, reaching maturity with recipients turning 18 from September 2020, this also provides a great opportunity to boost the level of financial awareness around savings and investment as those young adults gain access to their savings pots.

Finally, recent years have seen a steep decline in the number of quoted companies on the stock market as a greater proportion of companies have become privately owned. This makes it more difficult for personal investors to access the capital markets. Thriving capital markets are vital for the effective running of the economy and the funding of the small and medium sized businesses which are the engines of growth. We are therefore calling on the next Government to initiate a drive for greater ownership and to improve access to capital for personal investors.

* We surveyed 1,192 of our customers online between 2- 6 November 2019

 
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