Merryn's blog

Our pension system, little-changed since Roman times, needs updating
People dressed as Roman centurions
Pensions

Our pension system, little-changed since Roman times, needs updating

The Romans introduced pensions, and we still have a similar system now. But there is one vital difference between Roman times and now that means the s…
25 Jul 2022
Holiday reading: five books to make sense of the 1970s – and the 2020s
Woman reading a book in a deckchair
Books

Holiday reading: five books to make sense of the 1970s – and the 2020s

With raging inflation, booms, busts and political crises, the 1970s has a reputation as a relentlessly awful decade. But things aren’t that simple, sa…
11 Jul 2022
We’re doing well on pensions – but we still need to do better
Pension portfolio on a laptop
Pensions

We’re doing well on pensions – but we still need to do better

Pensions auto-enrolment has vastly increased the number of people in the UK with retirement savings. But we’re still not engaged enough, says Merryn S…
4 Jul 2022
Prepare your portfolio for recession
Closing down sale
Investment strategy

Prepare your portfolio for recession

A recession is looking increasingly likely. Add in a bear market and soaring inflation, and things are going to get very complicated for investors, sa…
27 Jun 2022
Investing for income? Here are six investment trusts to buy now
Bank clerk handing over cash
Share tips

Investing for income? Here are six investment trusts to buy now

For many savers and investors, income is getting hard to find. But it's not impossible to find, says Merryn Somerset Webb. Here, she picks six investm…
14 Jun 2022
Everything is collapsing at once – here’s what to do about it
Investment strategy

Everything is collapsing at once – here’s what to do about it

Equity and bond markets are crashing, while inflation destroys the value of cash. Merryn Somerset Webb looks at where investors can turn to protect th…
23 May 2022
Value is starting to emerge in the markets
Investment strategy

Value is starting to emerge in the markets

If you are looking for long-term value in the markets, some is beginning to emerge, says Merryn Somerset Webb. Indeed, you may soon be able to buy tra…
16 May 2022
Cover of MoneyWeek magazine issue no 1022, Friday 23 October 2020

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ESG investing could end up being a classic mistake
ESG investing

ESG investing could end up being a classic mistake

ESG investing has been embraced with enormous speed and zeal. But think long and hard before buying in, says Merryn Somerset Webb.
3 May 2022
Older people may own their own home, but the young have better pensions
Pensions

Older people may own their own home, but the young have better pensions

UK house prices mean owning a home remains a pipe dream for many young people, but they should have a comfortable retirement, says Merryn Somerset Web…
25 Apr 2022
UK house prices will fall – but not for a few years
House prices

UK house prices will fall – but not for a few years

UK house prices look out of reach for many. But the truth is that British property is surprisingly affordable, says Merryn Somerset Webb. Prices will …
19 Apr 2022
Rishi Sunak can’t fix all our problems – so why try?
Budget

Rishi Sunak can’t fix all our problems – so why try?

Rishi Sunak’s Spring Statement is an attempt to plaster over problems the chancellor can’t fix. So should he even bother trying, asks Merryn Somerset …
28 Mar 2022
How to avoid a miserable retirement
Pensions

How to avoid a miserable retirement

The trouble with the UK’s private pension system, says Merryn Somerset Webb, is that it leaves most of us at the mercy of the markets. And the outlook…
21 Mar 2022
This isn’t the stagflationary 1970s – but neither is it the low-rate world of the 2010s
Investment strategy

This isn’t the stagflationary 1970s – but neither is it the low-rate world of the 2010s

With soaring energy prices and high inflation, it might seem like we’re on a fast track back to the 1970s. We’re not, says Merryn Somerset Webb. But w…
15 Mar 2022
ESG investing: defence stocks as an ethical investment
ESG investing

ESG investing: defence stocks as an ethical investment

The definition of what counts as “ESG” investing is getting so vague, says Merryn Somerset Webb, that at some point it will cease to mean anything at …
7 Mar 2022
Why we’re keeping RIT Capital Partners in our portfolio
Investment trust model portfolio

Why we’re keeping RIT Capital Partners in our portfolio

The RIT Capital Partners investment trust has lost 10% so far this year. But its longer term record is exceptional, says Merryn Somerset Webb.
1 Mar 2022
Ukraine crisis: for investors, things may well be different this time
Investment strategy

Ukraine crisis: for investors, things may well be different this time

Markets have withstood endless shocks in recent years – and investors have usually sailed through unscathed. But Russia’s invasion of Ukraine could pr…
28 Feb 2022
Young people are becoming a scarce resource – we should value them more highly
Economy

Young people are becoming a scarce resource – we should value them more highly

In the last two years adults have been bizarrely unkind to children and young people. That doesn’t bode well for the future, says Merryn Somerset Webb…
22 Feb 2022
ESG investing wanes as “dirty activism” spreads
Investment strategy

ESG investing wanes as “dirty activism” spreads

The “green” stocks that make up many ESG portfolios aren’t doing so well, so money is going back into “brown” investments. And that’s no bad thing, sa…
21 Feb 2022
The world needs more metal – so buy mining stocks
Mining stocks

The world needs more metal – so buy mining stocks

The world is in need of metal, but supply is constrained. That opens up huge opportunities for investors who buy the miners that produce them, says Me…
14 Feb 2022
How the new environmentalism makes bad land good
Soft commodities

How the new environmentalism makes bad land good

Around two decades ago farming was in crisis but today farmland is looking more lucrative. Merryn Somerset Webb explains why this is and how investors…
8 Feb 2022
Investors are waking up to the value in UK stocks – you should too
Investment strategy

Investors are waking up to the value in UK stocks – you should too

It looks like the value in UK stocks is finally becoming obvious to everyone else, says Merryn Somerset Webb. If you haven’t repositioned your portfol…
4 Feb 2022
Market crashes: what happens when investors believe the impossible
Stockmarkets

Market crashes: what happens when investors believe the impossible

Market bubbles – and subsequent crashes – are rarer than many people think, but all are driven by the same thing, says Merryn Somerset Webb: investors…
1 Feb 2022