Cover of MoneyWeek magazine issue no 740

What will they do to your money?

30 April 2015 / Issue 740

Who will win the general election? And what will it mean for you and your money? John Stepek and Matthew Partridge report. Read this week's cover story here.

• Did a British day trader really crash the US market?
• Now could be a good time to short the FTSE 100
• The world’s richest ringmaster sells up

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John Stepek

There’s a real choice here in the election

With the general election less than a week away, it’s hard to think of much else. And as an investor, it makes sense to care about the outcome. It’s tempting to be cynical about politicians, particularly when they’re spouting blatant new electoral bribes on a daily basis. But don’t be fooled into thinking that you don’t have a real choice here. There are very clear differences between both the policies and the overall philosophies of the main parties, and the smaller parties who are likely to be supporting them in the next parliament.

We looked at how the policies they’ve revealed so far (I imagine we’ll get more last-ditch bribes in the days to come) are likely to impact on your investments and your finances. But the short version is that, whoever gets in, it’s going to have a meaningful impact on your wealth. So ignore the likes of Russell Brand and get out there and use your vote.

That said, there’s a lot more for investors to worry about than the results of an election in one small part of the global economy. For one thing, stockmarkets around the world are getting more and more expensive by the day.

The US is in the lead on this front, with the tech-heavy Nasdaq index finally poking its head back above the record high it set back in 1999. But beyond the most reviled markets – Russia and Greece, for example – it’s hard to point to anything as being wonderfully cheap.

We still like eurozone markets like Italy, and our old favourite Japan, and even China is appealing despite the growing mania for leveraged betting among local investors. But it’s an increasingly frustrating time to be a value investor, as our regular columnist Tim Price notes in his recent interview with Merryn Somerset Webb.

• Read the full editor’s letter here: There’s a real choice here in the election