Money roundup video: Inflation falls to 0% and are Help to Buy Isas attractive?

The Independent’s Personal Finance Editor Simon Read talks over the latest money news

This week: Inflation falls to 0%; Fresh pension text scammers warning; are Help to Buy Isas attractive?;  and the money-saving deals of the week 

Inflation falls to 0%

Consumer Price Index (CPI) inflation has fallen to zero for the first time since comparable records began and is expected to turn negative in the coming months. That seems good news for borrowers, as mortgage rates will remain low, and bad news for savers as returns on savings will remain paltry. But o per cent inflation means that all interest-paying savings accounts now offer a real return.

What the new record means for consumers.

Fresh pension text scammers warning

Be wary of dodgy pension scams, the City watchdog has warned. With the new pension freedoms coming in on 6 April the Financial Conduct Authority says people need to watch out for scammers trying to trick you into investing your retirement savings into questionable schemes.

Scammers tend to ring out of the blue, so don’t listen to cold callers, the FCA advises. Chief executive Martin Wheatley says: “If you get cold-called about an investment opportunity, hang up. People need to be aware of the dangers of scammers offering opportunities that are too good to be true.”

Research by Old Mutual suggests that some 15 per cent of over-55s have been targeted by cold callers offering a “pension review” in the last year. “The new pension freedoms will signal open season for scammers,” warned Adrian Walker at the firm.

More on the story here.

Help to buy Isas may not be as attractive as they first seem

The newly announced "Help to Buy" Isas sound, on the face of it, a great boost for first-time buyers. They will be handed a 25 per cent bonus on money they save towards a deposit up to a maximum of £3,000 if they save £12,000.

George Osborne claimed £15,000 was the figure chosen as it's the average first-time buyer deposit. Obviously this will depend on where you live.

But that figure, once you do the maths, reveals a possible political trick that the Tories pulled on us all, while persuading us that they are trying to help young people on to the housing ladder.

More on the story here.

Money-saving deals of the week

Meerkat Movies offer 2-1 tickets on Tuesdays and Wednesdays while you can get 20% off walking boots when you recycle a pair through a charity offer at Mountain Warehouse.

Full details and more offers here.

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