Thursday 11 February 2010

Buying Gilts, Property, International Equities and UK Equities

As an employee of a company I have the option to contribute to a pension scheme. I have made the choice as part of my retirement investing strategy to contribute to the pension scheme as the company matches my contributions up to a limit, plus as I salary sacrifice into the pension, they also generously contribute the 12.8% employers national insurance that they would have otherwise paid to HMRC. I will complete a blog on pensions hopefully in the near future.

This is new money that enters every month and is currently the equivalent of about 0.5% of my total retirement investing assets. Another months worth of contribution has just been made. This is currently automated to occur each month and will be invested as follows:

- 4% to Index Linked Gilts. This adds up to be a very small contribution but I want to just keep nibbling a little.

- 60% to UK Commercial Property. A big contribution is made here as my desired low charge portfolio requires 10% asset allocation and my current low charge portfolio is only at 8.1%.

- 21% to International Equities. My desired low charge portfolio currently requires 13.3% asset allocation and my current low charge portfolio is only at 13.1%. This is the only input to International Equities that I am currently exploiting.

- 15% to UK Equities. This is one that requires a little explaining. My desired UK Equities is 18.6% and my current UK Equities is 18.6% so I am where I need to be. Where I am underweight heavily is Emerging Markets Equities by 2.3% and my total Equities exposure is also underweight by 2% at 54%. In an ideal world I would be buying Emerging Markets however my company based pension is inflexible (like a lot of company based schemes I would guess) and the lowest cost Emerging Markets Equity fund that I can buy has fees of 2%. Now I refuse to pay anyone 2% in fees and so the compromise I have made is to try and bolster my Equities allocation while acknowledging I am underweight Emerging Markets. Not ideal I know but fits with strategy to minimise fees.

As always DYOR.

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