75,000 teens could get a £2,000 windfall in September

75,000 teens could get a £2,000 windfall in September

Tens of thousands of teens could be eligible for a savings lump sum in six months

Brean Horne
Wed, 03/04/2020 – 15:31

Image

Around 75,000 teenagers could receive a lump sum when their child trust funds mature in September, according to new research from OneFamily.

Despite the first child trust funds maturing in six months’ time, 60% of teenagers and their carers are estimated to have lost track of their savings.

The average OneFamily account is estimated to hold around £2,100, but many have significantly more.

Here, we explain what a child trust fund is and how to track down a lost child trust fund account.

What is a child trust fund?

A child trust fund is a tax-free savings account offered to children born 1 September 2002 and 1 January 2011.  

The initiative was set up by the government to encourage parents and guardians to save for their children’s future.

The government made a contribution of £250 to each account and families in receipt of child tax credits received an extra £250.

Up to £4,620 can be saved into child trust accounts each year – which starts on the child’s birthday and ends the day before their next.

Anyone can deposit into a child trust fund.

From the age of 16 the child named on the account can choose to manage their child trust fund.

Once they turn 18, they can officially access their money.

How to trace a lost child trust fund

To track down a lost child trust fund, you’ll need to submit a request via GOV.UK.

You’ll need to a Government Gateway ID, which only takes a few moments to set up if you don’t already have one.

Once signed in, you’ll be asked if you’re the parent or guardian or the child the account belongs to.

It takes around 15 days to receive a response about your account.

Time to talk about finances

Discussing finances openly with children can help them understand the importance of developing a good savings habit.  

Jon Lee, head of investment proposition at OneFamily says: “This September we estimate that more than 75,000 teenagers will turn 18, the majority of whom will have a child trust fund in their name.

“People will have also moved home, sometimes several times, so it’s not surprising that they could have lost track of where their trust fund was invested. 

“However, we want to do our best to reunite teenagers with their missing money and the easiest way is through our online child trust fund tool. 

“The upcoming milestone also provides a great opportunity for teens and parents to talk about the different options for saving, and money more generally.

“By talking openly about money, families can help to establish good saving habits that will help teenagers with their future plans as they grow older.”

OneSite Article
6eea3298-fdb6-494d-ab17-f1c165547981

Syndicate to OneSite
On

Queued for syndication
Off

Coronavirus: what does it mean for your money?

Coronavirus: what does it mean for your money?

Find out how coronavirus could impact your pensions, travel plans, investments and more

Brean Horne
Wed, 03/04/2020 – 13:05

Image

Coronavirus has sparked concerns over the global economy. 

From investments and pensions to savings and travel, we round up how coronavirus could impact your finances. 

What does coronavirus mean for investments?

Last week stock markets dropped to their lowest levels since the 2008 global financial crisis due to fears about coronavirus. Uncertainty over the spread of the disease could continue to impact markets across the world.  

No one can predict how the markets will behave. Some of last week’s losses have been regained this week, but we do not know whether they will fall further or continue to rise. 

However, while it’s tempting to sell when markets are falling, this crystalises losses. For investors with a long time horizon, losses may hurt in the short-term but should be recouped over the long term so it generally pays to sit tight. 

What does coronavirus mean for savings?

UK interest rates have been notoriously low for years. Central banks across the globe, including the Bank of England (BoE), have proposed cutting interest rates further, if the stock market downturn affects the wider economy.

Mark Carney, governor at the Bank of England says: “The Bank will take all necessary steps to support the UK economy and financial system, consistent with its statutory responsibilities.”

A drop in interest rates could cause savings rates to fall again. Already this year we’ve seen NS&I slash rates and Premium bonds prizes and TSB cutting current account interest rates.

What does coronavirus mean for mortgages?

Should the BoE cut interest rates further, the cost of borrowing could fall as well. Variable rate  or new fixed-rate mortgages deals as well as new personal loans rates could become cheaper.

What does coronavirus mean for pensions?

Most workers in the UK have a private or workplace pension scheme which holds investments in the stock market. As a result, the stock market slump caused the value of pensions to tumble over recent weeks.

However, selling when markets are down generally doesn’t pay. Savers with a long time horizon should have time to make up losses and if you are contributing to a pension every month you will now be benefiting from lower prices. 

Savers who are close to retiring may want to consider if now is the time to take money from a pension or if the can delay making withdrawals. 

What does coronavirus mean for travel?

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO), is currently advising against travel to Hubei Province in China and the city of Daegu in South Korea.

It is also advising against all but essential travel to the rest of mainland China, Cheongdo in South Korea and 11 small towns in Italy.

If you have plans to travel to any of the FCO’s listed countries, you may be entitled to a refund from your airline or holiday provider.

For more travel information and advice, read our article coronavirus: what are your travel rights?

What does coronavirus mean for travel insurance?

Most travel insurance policies will help you cover the cost of non-refundable expenses if your trip to a listed FCO country is cancelled or if you have to stay in quarantine abroad. This could include anything from flights and accommodation to pre-booked events and activities.  Travel insurance is unlikely to pay out if you choose not to travel to a country that is not listed by the FCO for fear of contracting coronavirus.

Stuart Lloyd, travel insurance expert at Columbus Direct says: “If anyone is looking to cancel a trip, make sure you review your travel insurance policy as most, but not all of them, will cover cancellation for an epidemic or due to FCO advice. If there is no mention of epidemics or reference to the FCO included within the list of things that are covered under cancellation, then there is a good chance that any losses from not travelling will not be covered by the policy.

Unfortunately, choosing not to go on holiday due to fear of contracting Coronavirus or any other illness, is not something that your travel insurance would provide cover for.

So, if you are due to travel to a country or region that the FCO has not advised against travelling to, but cancel the trip anyway, this will definitely not be covered.”

What does coronavirus mean for income protection insurance?

Income protection is a type of insurance that pays out if you’re unable to work due to injury or illness.

If you are unable to work as a result of coronavirus, your policy is likely to pay so long as you developed the illness after your policy started.

New income protection policies are likely to cover time off due to the coronavirus if you haven’t contracted the virus at the time of applying.

Some providers, however, have changed the questions set to ask new customers if they have lived or travelled to a list of affected countered in the last 30 days, according to new findings from protection website and broker, ActiveQuote.

What does coronavirus mean for work?

If you have to take time out of work to self-isolate due to coronavirus you will be entitled to sick pay. Self-isolation should be considered as “sickness for employment purposes” according to health secretary Matt Hancock.

Where you are not ill and your employer asks you to stay home, you will be entitled to your usual salary.

Workers who have to take time off to care for someone affected by coronavirus will be entitled to leave but there is no statutory pay.

For more advice and information about your entitlements read out round up coronavirus: what are your rights at work?

OneSite Article
282634f7-6a4e-49a0-a5bb-49666fa9d8a9

Syndicate to OneSite
On

Queued for syndication
Off

Tesco issues 620,000 new Clubcards after data attack

Tesco issues 620,000 new Clubcards after data attack

The supermarket believes hackers used stolen usernames and passwords from other websites

Stephen Little
Wed, 03/04/2020 – 11:02

Image

Tesco is reissuing 620,000 new Clubcards to customers after criminals tried to hack accounts.

The supermarket giant believes the hackers stole passwords and usernames from other websites and then tried using them to redeem vouchers.

Tesco says it has contacted 620,000 Clubcard holders who may have been affected by the breach.

The company says no financial data was compromised and that all affected vouchers have been cancelled.

It has apologised for the inconvenience and assured customers that no Clubcard points or vouchers will be lost.

Customers will be able to carry on using their current card until a new one is issued.

A Tesco spokesperson says: “We are aware of some fraudulent activity around the redemption of a small proportion of our customers’ Clubcard vouchers. We have strict security measures in place and our priority is protecting our customers.

“Our internal systems picked this up quickly and we immediately took steps to protect our customers and restrict access to their accounts.

“We have asked customers affected to reset their passwords and are contacting customers whose Clubcard vouchers may have been affected to let them know that we will replace these vouchers and issue new Clubcards, as a precaution.”

Around 19 million people have a Clubcard account.

Clubcard holders were made aware of issue after they were sent an email by Tesco.

Image

In 2014, Tesco was forced to suspend over 2,000 online shopping accounts after details were posted online.

Its banking division was also fined £16.4 million in 2018 after a cyber attack that saw £2.26 million stolen from customers in 48 hours.

Tesco Clubcard was first launched in 1995 and then relaunched in 2018 with contactless cards.

With Tesco Clubcard you collect one Clubcard point for every £1 you spend in Tesco and one point for every £8 you spend everywhere else. The points can be turned into vouchers, so 150 points are worth £1.50.

What can you do?

Experts believe that incidents like this are exacerbated by users using the same log-in for multiple accounts.

Make sure you change the passwords on all your accounts. Be sure to use a strong password that is unique and contains letters, numbers and symbols.

Stewart Room, head of data protection and cybersecurity at multinational law firm DWF, says: “This breach is about the balancing act between security and convenience and highlights the dangers of relying on passwords as a single form of authentication. 

“This incident should be a lesson for customers to not use the same password for multiple accounts. If cyber criminals manage to use stolen credentials once, in all likelihood they’ll be trying the credentials on other sites too.”

If you are worried that your email has been compromised, you can check on the website haveibeenpawned.com.

OneSite Article
1164d6df-6670-446b-8a4d-25d901f9cc58

Syndicate to OneSite
On

Queued for syndication
Off