Sunday, 26 March 2017

London Capital & Finance Reviews - Is it Real or a Scam?

You may have seen adverts for London Capital & Finance offering excessively high rates for what are claimed to be savings accounts.

The motto "if it seems too good to be true it probably is" has never been more appropriate. London Capital & Finance may not be a scam but it certainly isn't offering a savings account. It's not FSCS protected and you could lose ALL your money.

The advert claims London Capital Finance is a savings account, it isn't! It's a loan to a company that may not pay it back. Read closely and it says your capital is at risk

Wednesday, 15 February 2017

8% Interest Deposit Scam?

On almost a daily basis there are posts on MSE about an 8% bond where you could lose 100% of your money yet posters are ignoring the risk warnings and assuming it is a savings account.

But back in 1998 you could get 8% on instant access account with Egg!

Tuesday, 10 January 2017

Evidence of Ancient Advanced Civilisations

I write a number of blogs and it was hard to decide where this one should appear as it's not really on the theme of any of them. I've been interested in history for some time and fascinated by how our civilisation developed so some recent discoveries have been a real eye opener about our past. As a result it seemed a good idea to put some details together for my own benefit as much as anyone else to try to clarify things that are facts, scientific theories and pure speculation to try to put some order to them. I'll be adding to this over time so check back for any updates and feel free to comment if there are things you disagree with or I've missed out.

Is there any Evidence for Ancient Advanced Civilisations?

Civilisations as we understand them are believed by mainstream archaeologists to have begun around 5000BC. However, is it possible that advanced civilisations existed before this time and we have yet to find any evidence or understand the evidence we already have?

To try to assess the information I've grouped items into 3 headings.

Facts Beyond Dispute

Sea levels are much higher now than 10,000 years ago
Much of the planet has a very different climate to 10,000 years ago
Gobekli Tepi was used around 12,000 years ago, possibly as much as 15,000
Pyramids of Giza are aligned to exact compass directions
Many species became extinct around 12000 years ago especially in North America
Method of building the Pyramids is unknown
Date of construction of Sphinx is unknown
Asteroid or comet impacts have occurred in the past
Cave paintings have been dated to around 35,000-40,000 years ago
Jomon people in Japan
Harrapan/Indus Valley in India
Doggerland/Mesolithic Star Carr Lake Flixton 9000BC

Scientific Theories

Earth was hit by a comet or meteorite around 12000 years ago in North America
The Sphinx is aligned to the constellation Leo
The Pyramids of Giza are in scale to the circumference of the earth (Fact but coincidence or not?)
Ancients had no knowledge of astronomy or maths
The first civilisations began around 6000 years ago

Disputed Theories from Extrapolated Data

Weathering on the Sphinx indicates it was built when water flowed. This would be at least 8000 years ago.
The Sphinx is aligned to the constellation Leo which implies building 10,000 years ago
The Pyramids of Giza are in scale to the circumference of the earth and this was planned by the builders

Tuesday, 20 December 2016

Heron Global Alternative Investing Review - Is it genuine or a scam?

Heron Global Alternative Investing Review - Is it a scam?
Heron Global are advertising on national newspaper and other websites offering high interest paying investments but without any clear warnings of risks or of requirements. If you look closely in the terms you must be a sophisticated investor or have high net worth to use these investments - they are not suitable for retail consumer savers despite being advertised at them on consumer sites.

I would recommend extreme caution for any investments that highlights returns and do not highlight risks and more importantly are NOT FSCS protected so you could lose ALL your money.

Thursday, 30 June 2016

Can we have Alternatives to EU Trade Post Brexit?

Some have said that we could easily strike trade agreements with other countries and can ignore the EU. Rather shortsighted if you look at the numbers:

  • GDP of Ghana was under $40bn in 2014
  • GDP of Germany was under $4000bn in 2014
  • Our exports to Germany were $46bn in 2014.

So we export more to Germany than the entire Ghana GDP. Do you really think we can replace trade with Germany with Ghana instead?

It's all very well looking at other trade deals but the reality is that the volumes are way off what we have with EU and cannot replace them in the short or medium term before you even think about what we could sell to other countries - our manufacturing base isn't exactly massive.

Guardian Comment - Has Boris Been Ended with Check Mate?

This was the fascinating analysis from a post on Guardian comments by user Teebs the day after the EU referendum result was announced.

Now that Boris Johnson has confirmed he is not standing for the Conservative leadership it looks even more intriguing.

Teebs - The Guardian Comments 25 June 2016

If Boris Johnson looked downbeat yesterday, that is because he realises that he has lost.

Perhaps many Brexiters do not realise it yet, but they have actually lost, and it is all down to one man: David Cameron.

With one fell swoop yesterday at 9:15 am, Cameron effectively annulled the referendum result, and simultaneously destroyed the political careers of Boris Johnson, Michael Gove and leading Brexiters who cost him so much anguish, not to mention his premiership.


Throughout the campaign, Cameron had repeatedly said that a vote for leave would lead to triggering Article 50 straight away. Whether implicitly or explicitly, the image was clear: he would be giving that notice under Article 50 the morning after a vote to leave. Whether that was scaremongering or not is a bit moot now but, in the midst of the sentimental nautical references of his speech yesterday, he quietly abandoned that position and handed the responsibility over to his successor.
And as the day wore on, the enormity of that step started to sink in: the markets, Sterling, Scotland, the Irish border, the Gibraltar border, the frontier at Calais, the need to continue compliance with all EU regulations for a free market, re-issuing passports, Brits abroad, EU citizens in Britain, the mountain of legislation to be torn up and rewritten ... the list grew and grew.

The referendum result is not binding. It is advisory. Parliament is not bound to commit itself in that same direction.

The Conservative party election that Cameron triggered will now have one question looming over it: will you, if elected as party leader, trigger the notice under Article 50?
Who will want to have the responsibility of all those ramifications and consequences on his/her head and shoulders?

Boris Johnson knew this yesterday, when he emerged subdued from his home and was even more subdued at the press conference. He has been out-maneouvered and check-mated.
If he runs for leadership of the party, and then fails to follow through on triggering Article 50, then he is finished. If he does not run and effectively abandons the field, then he is finished. If he runs, wins and pulls the UK out of the EU, then it will all be over - Scotland will break away, there will be upheaval in Ireland, a recession ... broken trade agreements. Then he is also finished. Boris Johnson knows all of this. When he acts like the dumb blond it is just that: an act.

The Brexit leaders now have a result that they cannot use. For them, leadership of the Tory party has become a poison chalice.

When Boris Johnson said there was no need to trigger Article 50 straight away, what he really meant to say was "never". When Michael Gove went on and on about "informal negotiations" ... why? why not the formal ones straight away? ... he also meant not triggering the formal departure. They both know what a formal demarche would mean: an irreversible step that neither of them is prepared to take.

All that remains is for someone to have the guts to stand up and say that Brexit is unachievable in reality without an enormous amount of pain and destruction, that cannot be borne. And David Cameron has put the onus of making that statement on the heads of the people who led the Brexit campaign.

Monday, 27 June 2016

Will UK Leave EU? When will Article 50 be Triggered?

Now that the referendum votes have been counted and the result announced the expectation is that the UK will be leaving the EU. However for this to happen the UK government needs to notify the EU in accordance with Article 50 and this still may not happen for some time, if at all.

There has been a petition organised to have a second referendum where the margin of victory is required to be much higher. Ironically this was initiated by a Leave supporter before the results were known and when they were expecting Remain to win. I think this has virtually no chance of success.

David Cameron has given his resignation and handed the responsibility for initiating the formal process of withdrawing from the EU to his successor. At the moment the two likely front runners are Boris Johnson and Theresa May. As I explained in my previous blog I don't think Boris is an enthusiastic Leave supporter and the result was unexpected for him. Theresa May was a supporter of the Remain side although much less visible and vocal than some other cabinet members.

As a result if either become Leader of the Conservatives and thus Prime Minister they would be following a policy that they didn't believe was in the best interests of the UK. If the leadership election takes place as expected in October 2016 then it is entirely possible by then that negative impacts of the UK leaving would have become clear and public opinion may have swung decisively against Brexit. It's also possible that they may have found that the trade deal to access the EU Single Market just isn't available on the terms that they find acceptable.

One possible scenario is that the newly elected Prime Minister decides to call a snap general election on a manifesto of reversing the decision and to Remain in the EU. A subsequent win on that platform would mean that Article 50 wasn't triggered and that the UK would continue as a member of the EU. It would also mean that the momentum for a second Scottish Independence referendum would have been blown apart as the UK would still be part of the EU.

As of June 2016 this sequence of events might appear fanciful. However when the Berlin Wall was breached in 1989, no-one could foresee that Germany would be reunited so quickly or that the Soviet Union would be gone within a couple of years. The saying goes that a week is a long time in politics and there are plenty of pitfalls that could scupper the whole Brexit process over the next 4 months even without external influences.

What do you think? Is this a possible scenario?