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Thursday 18th April 2024

Must-know money: financial cold calling banned

From a ban on financial cold calls to chaos at NS&I and avoiding the savings tax trap – here are our favourite must-know money stories this week to help you get your head around your personal finances.

Financial cold calling banned

The Government has announced a ban on all cold calling relating to financial products, the BBC reports.

Mirroring an earlier ban on pensions cold calling, anyone receiving an unsolicited phone call relating to financial products or matters will soon be reassured that the call is a crime.

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The Government has also announced a new ‘fraud squad’ of 500 police officers to tackle financial crime – the most common type of crime in the UK with one in 15 people affected.

Media regulator Ofcom says 41 million people received some form of suspicious call or text last summer.

NS&I “in chaos”

Angry customers are complaining about “chaos” at NS&I, Toby Walne writes for This is Money.

Customers have complained that the customer service is in chaos with long hold times on the phone, customers locked out of accounts for weeks on end, months in dealing with sensitive cases and application rejections without explanation.

The Government savings provider’s woes are such that angry customers are taking to Trustpilot and other sites to vent their fury.

In response to the reader complaints the bank comments: ‘We are sorry that some of your readers have not received the high standard of service that they have come to expect from us. In April the average speed to answer phone calls was ten minutes but some times of the day are busier than others.

“Last year, we added two-factor authentication to our website as part of our security. More than three million online customers have successfully enrolled. Those who have not been successful can call customer services on 08085 007 007.”

Savings tax trap

Savers should be wary of a tax trap, Cris Sholto Heaton writes in MoneyWeek.

Savers might cheer the return of better savings rates as the Bank of England has hiked the base rate, but better returns on cash come with the risk of tax liabilities.

With basic rate of income tax and savings allowance totalling £17,570 anyone earning more than this on their savings per year could be liable to pay tax on their earnings.

Cash ISAs or NS&I Premium Bonds are two alternative options however that would shelter a saver’s cash from tax liabilities.

Photo Credits: Pexels

Edmund Greaves

Editor

Edmund Greaves is editor of Mouthy Money. Formerly deputy editor of Moneywise magazine, he has worked in journalism for over a decade in politics, travel and now money.

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