Marathon mortgages, the big business squad and shampoo

Simon’s reflections on weekend reporting, everything you need to know for engaging client success this week!

Homeowners must show immediate interest

Homeowners can access the biggest mortgage choice in 16 years (some 6,000 variations at start of March) but typically have 15 days to make a choice, pilling on the financial pressure for what is often the biggest financial decision to date.

Despite UK inflation falling to 3.4% interest rates look certain to stick at 5.25%. The MPC has a real desire to see further evidence that inflation is not entrenched with some suggesting any cuts earlier than August are unlikely. 

With savings pots a bit sparce and a greater reliance on loans for lunch, a diet of debt is a real concern according to AI powered analytics. For those looking for a rosy retirement, 1 in 5 aged 55 plus expect to have unpaid mortgage. The good news is that people 65 or over have £2.6 trillion of net housing wealth, but for those first-time buyers (now 34 years old), 20% will take a ‘marathon mortgage’ of 35 years, its 72 years if you want to pay the same monthly amount as 2022 levels. No surprise that retirement pots are under strain, with 46% of offsprings wanting their parents to splash the cash before they die.

MPC to BBS and beyond!

From the Monetary Policy Committee to Big Business Squad, Oxford educated Mark Carney (the country’s economic policy appears to be heavily Oxford influenced!) famed for presiding over the longest period of lowest base rates, has joined the Shadow Chancellor’s task force to drum up billions in private investment creating a national wealth fund with £1 public funding matched by £3 private sector investment. Mr Hunt’s patriotic British ISA is a nice to have but patriotism is not necessarily a good investment strategy, the FTSE 100 has fared less well than the dynamic Dow which has returned 17% in the past 12 months.

Mondeo Man to Land Rover Len

A General Election always drills down on a target audience, Essex Man or Mondeo Man, but in a world where it appears that many politicians have got no idea what people want – relating to ‘Sustainable Steve’ or ‘Waitrose Wendy’ or ‘Land Rover Len’ could be a tough ask in the numbers required to be first past the post.

Last week, Rishi polled a meagre 20% vote share, some 24 points off Mr Starmer. Some 17% sitting Tory MP’s have chosen to not loose but cut and run. Is reform required, 1 in 5 Tory voters think so. Could a fifth leadership change be on the cards, a potential unity leader in Penny Mordaunt (most popular with grassroots Tories) waits in the wings, can she be any match for a Farage foray or is ‘Boris Bounce’ needed. As it stands the Tories are on for a 1997 electoral end that would see them with less seats than the Blairite victory, around 40% today’s number, less than 150!

In other news, jobs for window cleaners, gardeners and driving instructors shown the biggest rise. In St Patrick day form Bolton is the cheapest place (£3.83) to gulp a Guinness and women’s shampoo cost 96% more than men’s, that head and shoulders more!

Simon Cossey is Dafferns’ Business Development Consultant and part of our Strategic Advisory team.