Understanding the financial industry and its jargon can be a challenge, even for those in the field. That’s why the team at Audley Wealth has compiled an A-Z list of financial terms to make it easier. Our comprehensive guide provides a clear explanation of the most commonly used terms, so you can stay informed and up-to-date.
Asset – A resource that has economic value that a person owns or controls. There is an expectation that this will provide a future benefit to the owner. For example a house or high-quality jewellery.
Annuities – a fixed sum of money paid to a person each year, for the rest of their life. For example, a contract issued by an insurance company is designed to provide a secure income stream throughout the entirety of your retirement years.
Accrual rate – This is the rate by which a pension from an earnings−related occupational pension scheme builds up from one year to another. The rate is shown as a fraction or a percentage of the member’s final yearly salary.
APR – Annual percentage rate (APR) is the official rate used to help you understand the cost of borrowing from a lender. It takes into account the interest rate and all lenders have to tell you what their APR is.
Arrangement fee – This is the fee that banks charge their customers for arranging the facility for an overdraft.
AER – Annual Equivalent Rate. The AER is the official rate of savings accounts. When you put your money into a savings account, the AER shows you how much interest you will receive from that deposit, regardless of when that interest is paid.
Bond – A fixed-income security that represents the ownership of debt and serves as a loan between a company or government and an investor.
Balloon payment – Some loan and finance agreements have lower repayments than normal in return for a high final payment. This is called a balloon payment.
Basic state pension– This is the retirement pension the Government pays to people who have paid enough national insurance contributions. Some people may receive a reduced basic state pension because they have not paid enough contributions.
Beneficiary – This is someone who benefits from a will, a trust or a life insurance policy
Bequeath – If you bequeath something, you leave it to someone in your will. You cannot bequeath land or real property but you can devise them.
Base rate – The standard interest rate set by the Bank of England which other financial institutions use as a guide when setting their interest rate. The Bank of England changes the base rate according to whether they are trying to encourage borrowing or spending to stimulate the economy.
Credit Score – A credit score is a number from 300 to 850 given to everyone. The higher the score, the better a potential borrower looks to potential lenders.
Compound Interest – When you save money, as well as earning interest on the savings, you also earn interest on the previous interest you have gained.
Capital gain – You make a capital gain if you sell or dispose of a long−term asset (such as a building) for more than it cost you.
Cash ISA – You can invest money in a cash ISA to earn tax−free interest.
Chargeable asset – This is an asset on which capital gains tax may have to be paid if it is sold or disposed of.
Capital – This is the amount of money that you invest or borrow – the initial lump sum.
Credit history – This is a record of the loans you have taken out in the past and any payments you have missed. This information is used by credit reference agencies to advise banks and building societies of your credit rating when you apply for new loans.
Child Trust Fund – The Child Trust Fund (CTF) is a long-term savings and investment account for children. In December 2010, the Government decided to stop opening CTFs, but those which had already been set up by then are designed to make sure that your children have savings up until the age of 18.
Conveyancing – This is the process of transferring legal ownership of property from one person to another.
Deductible – A fee paid out of pocket by a policyholder before an insurance company compensates for a claim.
Dividend – A periodic payment made to investors who own stock in a company, fund, or partnership, as a way to distribute earnings.
Diversification – The practice of spreading your investments around so that your exposure to any one type of asset is limited.
Depreciation – Depreciation is the drop in value of an asset due to wear and tear, age and obsolescence (going out of date) as recorded in an organisation’s financial records.
Devise – Devise means to leave land in a will
Deposit – Either a small amount paid towards the overall cost of a purchase to secure the item.
Debt – If you’ve borrowed money, then you are ‘in debt’, typically owing interest as well as the money initially borrowed.
Earnest money – A good-faith deposit you put on a property to demonstrate intent to buy it and pull it off the market.
Equity – Equity is the value of the shares issued by a company.
Equity Release – Equity release is the process of using the value of your home to raise cash – releasing the equity. There are two main types of equity release schemes available: lifetime mortgages and home reversion schemes. When the property is sold, the plan provider reclaims their loan and any interest due with the remainder going towards the plan owner or to their estate.
Estate Planning – For inheritance tax purposes, an individual’s estate is calculated as being their total assets minus any liabilities at the time of their death. Proper estate planning could save your family hundreds of thousands of pounds because IHT (sometimes called ‘death duty’) will be charged on what you leave behind. Currently, IHT is due at 40% of the value of all the assets you leave behind on death above the IHT threshold.
Fixed Rate – This is an interest rate which does not change during the life of a loan.
Floating charge – A floating charge is used to provide security for money lent to a company. The charge is over the company’s liquid assets(such as stocks and debtors) but it is only triggered by an event such as liquidation.
Grant – Financial aid that doesn’t need to be repaid. Can come from the government.
Gross interest – This is interest which has not had any income tax taken out of it.
Gilts – These may also be called Treasury bonds. They’re bonds that are issued by the UK government. They’re regarded as being very low-risk, secure investments because it’s the government promising to pay you back.
Hard inquiry – A type of credit check that lenders undertake to review an applicants creditworthiness.
Hedge fund – Hedge funds are a high-risk investment: they comprise a complicated set of strategies that aims to make attractive returns on the stock markets.
Interest – The amount of extra money you will need to pay back when you borrow money from a lender. It is generally expressed as a percentage, such as an annual percentage rate (APR).
Inflation – This is the name for general price increases.
ISA – Individual Savings Account. There are 4 types, cash ISAs, stocks and shares ISAs, innovative finance ISAs and Lifetime ISAs
Inheritance Tax – This tax is charged on certain gifts, and on the value of the estate left by someone who has died.
Intestacy – This happens when someone dies without leaving a will. Their estate is divided up between their relatives following the rules set by law.
Joint lives – Some life insurance policies cover two people’s lives and then pay out on the first death.
Joint lives last survivor – This sort of life insurance is on two people’s lives and pays out on the second death.
JISA – Junior ISA. For children under the age of 16. This can be invested into cash or equities and grows tax-free. Once the child reaches 16 it converts to an ISA but they are unable to withdraw any amounts until they turn 18.
Leverage – Financial leverage is when you borrow money to make an investment that will hopefully lead to greater returns. It’s built on the idea of spending money to make money.
Liquidity – The amount of money that is available to meet debts or to use for investment, whether in cash or assets that can be quickly converted to cash.
Liabilities – These are debts that a person or an organisation owes
Lifetime annuity – A lifetime annuity will give you a regular income for the rest of your life. You buy an annuity with the cash sum that’s built up in your pension fund so that you can have a regular income during retirement. There are different types of annuities to suit your needs and circumstances.
Mortgage – A loan to buy a property, which is then ‘secured’ on the property. This means that the lender may eventually have the right to take over the property if you do not keep up with the repayment terms of the mortgage.
Mutual fund – An investment portfolio that uses a pool of money from large numbers of people to purchase stocks, bonds, or other securities.
Mature/maturity – If an investment policy comes to the end of its life, it has reached maturity
Net Income – The amount of money you bring home after taxes and deductions are taken out of your paycheck.
Occupational pension – Schemes are set up by employers to provide pensions for their employees.
Output tax – This is the value-added tax (VAT) charged by a business registered for VAT, on the goods and services it sells.
Premium – A fee paid in either monthly or yearly increments toward an insurance policy.
Portfolio – The collection of all your financial assets.
PAYE – An employer collects income tax and national insurance are collected from employees’ pay and pays it to the Inland Revenue. This system is called Pay As You Earn (PAYE).
Pension mortgage – This is a mortgage which will be repaid out of the lump sum from a pension policy or retirement annuity.
PPI – Payment Protection Insurance was an insurance normally taken out alongside a loan which would cover the repayments in the event of you being unable to work and make payments
Premium Bonds – Government Back Savings through National Savings & Investments. Capital is guaranteed but pays no interest. Instead, you are entered into a monthly prize draw where you could win up to £1,000,000.
Pensionable age – This is the age people have to reach to be entitled to draw their state pension
Retail investor – A nonprofessional trader who buys and sells securities through a brokerage account.
Remortgage – When you apply for a new mortgage with a different lender, but stay in your current home.
Reserves – These are amounts set aside in one year’s accounts, which can be spent in later years. Some types of reserve can only be spent if certain conditions are met.
Recession – a period when an economy declines, as measured as a reduction in economic output.
Stamp Duty – Stamp Duty is a tax you might have to pay if you buy a residential property or a piece of land in England or Northern Ireland over a certain price
Stocks and Shares – Both terms mean the same thing: companies’ stocks and shares that can be bought and sold. Owning a share in a company means owning a part of that company, or owning some of that company’s stock.
Standing order – This is an instruction by a bank’s customer to the bank, to pay an amount of money regularly to another bank account.
Tangible assets – If an asset can be physically touched, it is a tangible asset.
Trust – A legal entity that can hold almost any asset, including real estate, bank accounts, investment accounts, business interests, and life insurance policies.
Term – A term is any of the clauses which form part of a contract.
Trustee– A trustee is a person who takes responsibility for managing money or assets that have been set aside in a trust for the benefit of someone else.
Unsecured loan – An unsecured loan is a loan that doesn’t require any type of collateral. Instead of relying on a borrower’s assets as security, lenders approve loans based on their credit score.
Valuation – Valuation is the process of determining the worth of an asset, such as a house, or company. This will help with the sale of an asset or calculating your wealth in assets.
Variable Interest Rates – Rate on a loan or security that fluctuates over time.
Volatility – How quickly the value of an investment fluctuates.
Whole of life assurance – This is life assurance cover which lasts the lifetime of the person whose life is assured
Yield – How much income an investment generates.
If you would like any more terms defined by our team, or are interested in our financial services, get in touch – www.audleywealth.com/contact-us