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Cadbury, Our Chocolate Fantasies & Investing Practically

The best form of non-fiction is arguably the memoir — who wouldn’t want to know how Obama did it? From Anthony Kiedis’ wayward history in ‘Scar Tissue’ all the way to Frank McCourt’s harrowing upbringing in ‘Angela’s Ashes’, everyone seems to have lived long, tough and stupendous lives.

Yet, as monumental as these memoirs are, there may never be a story quite like the experiences of the lucky people who get to eat chocolate for money. Yes, for. At £9 per hour, to be exact.

If you haven’t heard, Cadbury, the second largest multinational confectionery company in the world, recently announced the yummiest news: they are looking for chocolate tasters to taste-test their latest inventions in Reading, UK,  before the products hit the shelves! Talk about doing what you love for a living; chocoholics finally get to embrace their ikigai.

As deliciously nuts as this news may sound, the UK is no stranger to unconventional occurrences like this. With the upcoming cheese festival in Reading, anti-Valentine’s day events in London and the annual sheep race that happens in Yorkshire, the UK pretty much has it all!

Because of the excellent job market (as illustrated by Cadbury), education market (we know this) and overall communal togetherness in the UK (people are nice), the property market in the UK is allowed to flourish.

Like Cadbury, the UK property market can give you just as many sweet returns; a long list of satisfied local and international investors can vouch for this.

While the UK property market has taken some minor hits from the looming Brexit, recent price recoveries reveal its resilience in the face of political and economic upheaval.  And, unlike the volatile stock market, property, when invested in the right places, is known for its comfortingly steady returns!

CBRE’s 2018 Market Outlook forecasts continuing economic growth for the UK despite the uncertainties caused by Brexit. The report states that those uncertainties are likely to peak this year.

Underpinning the property market is the fact that there is a chronic undersupply of houses that will undoubtedly support price growth. To illustrate, here is a slightly more in-depth view of the current state of the property market in the UK:

The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) expects prices to drift higher in some parts of the UK with the strongest gains in Northern Ireland, Scotland, Wales and northwest of England, which includes cities such as Manchester, Sheffield, Liverpool and Newcastle. But, a slump in asking prices across London and the South East will drag down prices in the rest of the UK so that overall growth remains flat.

The Government recently announced its ambition of building 300,000 homes a year in the Autumn Budget alongside a tranche of policies aimed at increasing the housing supply. However, RICS said that as many of these measures won’t come into effect until the mid-2020s, they will do little to alleviate the immediate housing crisis.

Which means that demand will continue to uphold price growth in the housing market. 

Back to Cadbury and its offer of a job of a lifetime — application closes on Feb 16 🙂 Time to get cracking on that resume. But if you’re not in a position to do so and want to invest in property instead, we can help you with that 🙂

Article by Nimue Wafiya

CSI Prop proudly promotes international investment property with high yields at low risk. Our portfolio comprises residential and commercial property including student accommodation and carehomes, in cities across the United Kingdom (London, Luton, Manchester, Liverpool, Newcastle, York, Glasgow, Scotland; Sheffield, etc) and Australia (Melbourne, Perth, Brisbane). Our projects are concentrated in high-growth areas with great educational, infrastructural and job growth potentials. We aspire to make a difference in the lives of our clients by helping them achieve their investment goals through strong market research backed by third party experts and due diligence. 

Disclaimer: CSI Prop does not provide tax & legal advice and accepts no liability. Readers are encouraged to consult a qualified tax or legal advisor for a thorough review.

Need advice or clarification? Call us for more information and/or to find out about our projects! Hotline: 03-2162 2260

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UK Property and the Snap Election

Prime Minister Theresa May’s surprising announcement for a snap election brings the British people to the polls again for the 3rd time in as many years. Image credit: www.themirror.co.ukThe dust has barely settled since Brexit, yet the UK is now bracing for another political turn of events, thanks to PM Theresa May’s call for a snap election this June. This will be the third time Britain will go to the polls in as many years. The surprising announcement saw shock waves reverberate across the FTSE and capital markets as an immediate reaction. Meanwhile, the IMF has revised up its forecast for UK growth this year – from 1.5% to a punchy 2%.

“Naturally, there there are pros and cons. But in a nutshell, the election will pave the way to a clean slate, for the new government to gracefully negotiate Brexit to protect the interests of Britain and its investors/stakeholders. However, the issue of housing shortage remains critical. There will be uncertainty in the market from now leading up to the election, but the impact will not be a long-drawn one, given the short time frame and the surprise element of the PM’s announcement. This is the opportunity the new government should seize to address housing supply for the sake of first-time house buyers, and policies for the sake of landlords, foreign property investors and the buy-to-let market who are crucial in housing supply,” said Virata Thaivasigamony of CSI Prop, alluding to changes in stamp duty policies announced by the UK government.

The pound strengthened significantly when the snap election was announced and has been on an upward trajectory since. Image credit: xe.com
  1. Stronger Sterling

The sterling rallied to its highest level in more than 6 months on the day of the PM’s surprise announcement, jumping 2.37% to $1.2904 against the USD — its highest surge since early October 2016. Deutsche Bank, one of the world’s biggest sterling bears, finally reversed its stance on the sterling, describing the early election as a game-changer for the currency. We accurately predicted that the value of the sterling will drop and rise again with Brexit & Article 50, which was what happened. Our sense is that the sterling will continue to strengthen over the next few months.

  1. Housing Market

The housing market in the UK has been generally resilient. However, there will be uncertainty in the housing market leading up to the election; major decision-making may be put on hold until the election results are out. Uniquely, the announcement was not leaked, which means the uncertainty will be relatively short as the element of surprise has prevented any build-up to affect the housing market. Ultimately, there is a chronic and unsustainable shortage of housing in the UK, which will continue to underpin housing market. Demand will outpace supply and keep prices up for years to come. However, the election is an opportunity for the new government to begin on a clean slate and affect change that benefits the market. It is an opportunity also for the new government to revise legislations and policies on behalf of local landlords, foreign property investors and the buy-to-let market as they play a party in the supply of housing. A clear election result could boost the housing market.

Deutsche Bank has taken a positive stance on the UK snap election and its impact on Brexit negotiations. Image Credit: Ed Conway
  1. Brexit Negotiations

Our sense is that if Theresa May consolidates her position, it will strengthen her mandate to bring more stability particularly vis-a-vis Brexit. Her domestic agenda is to build a country that works for all. A big win means she will be less answerable or beholden to groups interested in a ‘hard exit’; it gives her flexibility to make compromises and cut a more moderate deal for Brexit without worrying about support from the party or Eurosceptics. This will obviously have a positive effect on the UK economy and the pound will keep strengthening. Economists also argue that the election raises the chances of a ‘transitional deal’ after 2019 (when Brexit should have happened), as the next government won’t need to hold another election until 2022 . This is good for investors who are taking advantage of the favourable exchange rate.

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CSI Prop proudly promotes international investment property with high yields at low risk. Our portfolio comprises residential and purpose-built student property in cities across the United Kingdom (London, Luton, Manchester, Liverpool, Newcastle, York, Glasgow, Scotland; Sheffield, etc); Australia (Melbourne, Perth, Brisbane) and Thailand (Bangkok). Our projects are concentrated in high-growth areas with great educational, infrastructural and job growth potentials. We aspire to make a difference in the lives of our clients by helping them achieve their investment goals through strong market research backed by third party experts and due diligence. 

Disclaimer: CSI Prop does not provide tax & legal advice and accepts no liability. Readers are encouraged to consult a qualified tax or legal advisor for a thorough review.

Need advice or clarification? Call us for more information and/or to find out about our projects! Hotline: 03-2162 2260