How to invest in an Isa - and become a smarter investor

Mar 29, 01:12 PM

Investing in the stock market has been proven over time to be the best way to grow your wealth and doing so in an Isa can turbo-charge those returns.

There’s no tax to pay on investment profits or dividends and that means the magic of compounding can work that bit harder – and when you draw on your investment Isa in future the money is tax-free.

But what are the essential things you need to know about a stocks and shares Isa and investing in general, whether you are just getting started or an existing investor looking to spruce up their portfolio?

On this special Isa investing podcast, Rob Morgan, chief analyst at Charles Stanley, joins This is Money editor Simon Lambert to discuss how to be a smarter investor.

One thing investors must know is that this year’s £20,000 Isa allowance runs out in a week, on Tuesday 5 April, when the tax year ends. A fresh year’s allowance arrives on 6 April, but to make the most of the tax shelter it pays to make the most of each year’s allowance.

Thinking about how you invest is even more important right now, when a combination low interest rates and high inflation is eroding people’s wealth – and unsettling stock markets.

It’s easy at a time like this to think the stock market is too risky, but investing is a long-term game and if you zoom out and look over decades, rather than individual years, months or days, the picture looks far less volatile.
Among the topics discussed on the Isa investing podcast are:

  • Why should people invest?
  • What do they need to think about before they start?
  • Should people put off investing at a volatile time like this?
  • Why does investing in an Isa pay off?
  • How easy is it to get started investing in an Isa?
  • What should people think about when building their initial investment portfolio? Do they need to pick lots of shares or funds?
  • What are the traps investors can fall into?
  • What should existing investors do when they look at their portfolio?
  • How important is tailoring investments to your outlook on life? Should you go green?