This week in MoneyWeek: Keeping it in the family

This week in MoneyWeek: why family-run firms make great investments; how central banks are killing businesses; and five stocks that will reward patient investors.


This week in MoneyWeek: why family-run firms make great investments; how central banks are killing businesses; and five stocks that will reward patient investors.

Plus, why it's a good time to buy into the healthcare sector, why you shouldn't rely on your home as a pension, and how students can stretch their cash. All this and much, much more can be yours if you take out a subscription. You'll get the magazine, the iPad/Android app and full access to the website Why not sign up now?

Why you should invest in family-run firms

In this week's cover story, Richard Beddard looks at good old fashioned family values. When it comes to investing, it may surprise you to know that, in the long term, family-run companies outperform those owned by anonymous shareholders.

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But it shouldn't. Investing, really, is all about the long term. Sure, you can make a quick quid here and there, but if you want steady returns over a long periods of time, family-run firms "are natural bedfellows for long-term investors", says Richard.

And it's not just speculation. Studies prove that firms where families own at least 20% were "more profitable, fewer went bankrupt, and their share prices were less volatile than those of their peers". Returns were better too. "In the UK, the average return on assets for family firms was 16%, compared with 12% for non-family ones. Compound annual stockmarket returns were 16%."

There's a lot more to it than that, obviously. Richard explains the optimum family shareholding, which sectors to go for, and picks five of the best family firms to buy now. If you want to know what they are, take out a subscription to the magazine.

Value investing: tough going, but worth it in the long run

Equities might look expensive at the moment, but over the last few years there have really been very few other choices for the rational investor, says Merryn Somerset Webb. And the received wisdom in that time has been that blue chips are the best equities to own. But is that still true?

In her interview this week, Merryn talks to Jamie Carter of Oldfield Partners, a fund manager that's "fully focused on value". By value, of course, we mean stocks that are cheap and unloved, but which will, over time, come good.

"A good value investor needs to be different", says Merryn. You need to focus on "cheap, rather than exciting", and be "very patient" because success can be "a long time coming".

Forget growth stocks, value investing is "the right way to invest", says Jamie. He explains why, and picks five stocks that may not be fashionable, but should reward patient investors in the long run. Find out what they are by signing up here just £69 for a year's worth of issues.

Central banks are killing businesses

If you've been listening to even a small amount of what we've been saying over the last few months, you'll be well aware that central bankers are not particularly highly thought of at MoneyWeek Towers. But it's not just us.

This week, Peter Warburton, founder and chief economist of Economic Perspectives explains why the "experimental monetary policies that central banks have deployed in recent years" are not promoting greater investment, they are "killing off companies' desire to invest". Central bankers "don't have a clue about what motivates capital spending decisions", says Peter, and their polices are "poisoning business capex". It's stirring stuff. Read more with a subscription to the magazine.

IPOs, shipping collapse, and how students can stretch their cash

On paper, investing in companies as they float on the stockmarket "can be a good way to make money fast", says Matthew Partridge. But, he says "there are a couple of problems". There are hundreds of IPOs every year and, "more pertinently, ordinary investors rarely get access to the hottest IPOs before they start trading." There are exceptions however. Matthew explains what they are.

The global shipping industry has been struggling for a while now as world trade has slowed. Now, one of the world's largest container lines has collapsed. On his shares pages, Alex Williams asks if this is a turning point for the industry, rounds up the biggest bids and deals of the week, and collects the best share tips from the rest of the British press.

With students flooding back to colleges and universities around the country, Natalie Stanton picks some of the best ways to make their money go a little bit further, listing some of the many discounts available, from books to computers, travel and gyms.

As ever, there's a huge amount more in the magazine, including the benefits of pensions over property, a look at the incredibly complex finances of Formula 1, and why you should buy into healthcare. All that, plus travel, property, toys and a roundup of the week's news and views. A year's worth of this could be yours. Why not give it a go?

Ben Judge

Ben studied modern languages at London University's Queen Mary College. After dabbling unhappily in local government finance for a while, he went to work for The Scotsman newspaper in Edinburgh. The launch of the paper's website,, in the early years of the dotcom craze, saw Ben move online to manage the Business and Motors channels before becoming deputy editor with responsibility for all aspects of online production for The Scotsman, Scotland on Sunday and the Edinburgh Evening News websites, along with the papers' Edinburgh Festivals website.

Ben joined MoneyWeek as website editor in 2008, just as the Great Financial Crisis was brewing. He has written extensively for the website and magazine, with a particular emphasis on alternative finance and fintech, including blockchain and bitcoin. As an early adopter of bitcoin, Ben bought when the price was under $200, but went on to spend it all on foolish fripperies.