The Importance of Financial Planning

Tax Saving Tips for Managing Your Stocks and Shares

Many people now own shares in publicly listed companies such as Glanbia, Ryanair, Kerry, Vodafone etc, but some are unaware that a little care and attention in managing your stocks and shares can save you a considerable amount of money in tax.


Shares sold at a profit or Gain incur a Capital Gains Tax liability. The current rate is 33% of the Gain.

The Gain is the difference between the sale price and the original cost price of the shares. So it is important to have a record of the original cost of the shares. This is known as the Base Cost.

Tax saving – Previous Losses

Previous losses on assets such as Property, Bank shares, (Anglo), etc are available for set-off against future gains. So any Gains will be tax-free until the previous losses are completely used up.

Tax saving – Annual Tax Exemption

Individuals can make a Gain of €1,270 free of Capital Gains Tax in each tax year. By holding the shares in joint names, spouses can generate Gains of €2,540 tax free each year.

It is important to utilise the annual €2,540 Exemption from Capital Gains Tax. This is done by “bed and breakfasting” the shares.

Bed & Breakfasting

“Bed & breakfasting” means selling a sufficient number of shares each year to generate a Gain of €2,540 (€1,270 for an individual), and buying them back again after a minimum of 30 days. The effect is to increase the Base Cost of the shares, and thereby lessen the Capital Gains Tax liability.

There is a risk that during the 30 days, the shares might jump in price. Of course if you sell, and buy back at a higher price, you lose some of the benefit of “bed & breakfasting”.

Dividends and Scrip Dividends

Dividends are a significant element of value in ownership of shares. By ensuring that you own the shares at the “ex-dividend date” you maintain your entitlement to the dividend.

Some companies offer the option of “Scrip Dividends”. This means the company issues new shares instead of paying cash dividends. There is no tax advantage for the owner, and scrip share certificates are liable to be lost. Replacing a lost certificate is expensive, and may cost more than the shares themselves are worth, making it uneconomic to replace a certificate for a small number of shares.

Our Recommendation

The paperwork generated by even a small amount of shares held in paper certificates can be daunting and confusing. We recommend holding shares in a Stockbroker account.

This ensures that

  • no loss of share certificates occurs,
  • accurate records of Base Cost are maintained,
  • Bed & Breakfasting is made easy,
  • Scrip Dividends happen automatically,
  • no more lodging (or losing) small dividend cheques,
  • paperwork is minimised,
  • a statement is issued every year setting out the Capital Gains Tax and Dividend Withholding Tax calculations for your Accountant/Tax Advisor.

To discuss this further, give Aidan a call at 087 2621006.

Aidan Wall Financial Services Ltd Trading as Lifetime Financial Planning is regulated by the Central Bank of Ireland.  Investments can fall as well as rise. Past performance is not a reliable guide to future performance.

The Importance of Financial Planning

How to Invest a Lump Sum


As someone who has advised clients on their investment options for over 30 years, people often contact me seeking impartial and unbiased advice on how to invest a lump sum. Whether you have recently received an inheritance, successfully completed the sale of an asset or even won the lottery jackpot the advice I provide is pretty much the same in every case. Here are some simple steps to help demystify the whole process:


1: Decide on your investment goals

Some important questions to ask yourself at the early stages of investing include:

  • How long do I want to invest for, is it short or long term?
  • What level of return do I expect to receive?
  • Do I want a guaranteed level of return?
  • Will I need access to my fund if my personal circumstances change?
  • Do I want to receive a regular income from my investment?
  • How much risk should I take?


2: Seek Impartial Advice

Often people assume that they save money on fees or commission by arranging their investment directly through a product provider, bank or other financial institution when in fact the opposite is often the case.

The Competition Authority recently noted that Life and Pensions companies tend to provide better product design, more flexible terms and more competitive quotes when engaging with an Impartial Financial Broker.

An Impartial Financial Broker is a highly qualified professional who is required by law to work in your best interest, not in the interest of investment companies.

Their impartiality enables them to research the market thoroughly for the most suitable investment opportunity and to provide a range of choices to suit your needs. This is known as fair analysis of the market as it gives you a much better picture of the range of investment choices available.


3: Ensure your Advisor conducts a “Factfind”

Before imparting any advice on how to invest a lump sum your advisor should conduct a “Factfind”, which is essentially an in-depth analysis of your current financial circumstances and includes your income and expenses, your family situation (number and ages of dependants etc) and your existing assets and liabilities. This helps both advisor and client to build up a picture of where you currently stand financially.


4: Ensure a Risk Assessment is carried out

All investment funds are rated from 1 to 7 in terms of the level of risk involved, with low rated funds offering lower returns and less chance of volatility, and higher rated funds offering the potential for greater returns, but also greater volatility.

By conducting a Risk Assessment an advisor can ensure that you fully understand the different levels of volatility risk involved. In recommending a particular investment for you, the advisor will also take into account what they believe to be your threshold for withstanding any potential losses that could occur. This helps you to gauge your own attitude to risk when deciding what type of fund you may want to invest your money in.

At Lifetime Financial Planning, conducting a Factfind and Risk Assessment is an integral part of our advice process.

5: Review your Investment Options

At this point your advisor will research the market thoroughly for a range of options to suit your needs, providing you with a choice of suitable investments based on your requirements, your financial situation and your attitude to risk.

A good impartial advisor will also take a number of other factors into account, such as the financial strength of the product provider, the past performance of similar investments, and the cost of fund management fees.


6: Conduct Regular Reviews

When you have made your investment decision we strongly advise conducting regular reviews with your advisor in order to stay up to date on the performance of your chosen fund. Conducting reviews also enables your advisor to stay updated with regard to your personal financial circumstances and recommend any changes needed to ensure you stay on track to meet your goals.


About Lifetime Financial Planning

At Lifetime Financial Planning we have been providing impartial investment advice to clients at all stages in their lives since 1983. If you are seeking impartial advice on how to invest a lump sum or you wish to conduct a review of an existing investment then please don’t hesitate to contact us.

We can help you to diversify your investment, devise a phased strategy and/or switch or redirect an existing investment if you so choose.

Call Aidan Wall, Lifetime Financial Planning, at 046 924 0961 or email:


Investments can fall as well as rise. Past performance is not a reliable guide to future performance.

Aidan Wall Financial Services Ltd T/A Lifetime Financial Planning is regulated by the Central Bank of Ireland.