Five questions on: Investment charges

Are they going up?

Fields of dreams: venture capital trusts help young companies to grow, potentially delivering big returns for investors

Mark Dampier: You take a chance but VCTs have sorted the wheat from the chaff

Fields of dreams: venture capital trusts help young companies to grow, potentially delivering big returns for investors 

Questions of cash: My father’s estate is waiting on a refund from Npower

Q | My father died last year and we sold his house in December. Final meter readings were supplied to npower that month. In April npower sent a final bill which showed that they owed his estate £911.52. I was told this would be refunded within 28 days.

Npower failed to reimburse me by that deadline and so I made a formal complaint. The Ombudsman issued his report at the end of July requiring npower to pay the amount of £911.52 within 28 days and to credit my account with £150 as a gesture of goodwill, in addition to the £100 that npower had already agreed. Npower wrote to me on 26 August, 16 September and 15 October to say that it couldn’t refund me due to a technical issue. This has prevented me closing my father’s estate and paying out the proceeds to the beneficiaries. PC, by email.

Sarah Bibby and Robert Allinson, with their children Charlotte and Ethan, confronted the ‘difficult’ questions’ posed by making a will

Simon Read: There may be trouble ahead for cohabiting couples who don’t make a will

Your children have it all, your partner gets nothing

Don't go deeper into debt by spending yourself dry this Christmas

Simon Read: Pension mortgages, debts, splashing out for Christmas and the ghost meter

Don't go deeper into debt by spending yourself dry this Christmas

The FCA has imposed £1.1bn in fines on five banks over forex trading practices

Simon Read: Catch 22 for borrowers who are turned down by banks

There are many reasons for people to turn to high-cost credit, but being turned down by their banks for a loan is one

The sunlit uplands: switching out of a final salary pension may seem like madness, but there could be cases where it makes sense

Gold-plated pensions – the key to retirement freedom?

With some people are weighing up whether they will be better off cashing in their final salary pension next spring, Samantha Downes asks the experts

Weekly Money: Round-up of the personal finance stories you may have missed 17-21 November

Unclaimed Premium Bonds; problems with energy bills and tariffs; current account battle heats up; inflation rise hits savings; high investment charges leave us out of pocket; the stories we noticed this week.

Five questions on: Battling fuel poverty

Isn’t the Government sorting this problem out?

Money Alert: Alternative Finance

Alternative finance, such as peer-to-peer lending and crowdfunding, is doubling in size every year and could reach £4.4bn in 2015.

Donald MacInnes: I was fired for making up horoscopes and then my lifestyle deteriorated

Judging by the literally no emails my secretary Karen received while I was off, you welcomed my break from The Independent as much as I did.

If you’ve got a card in your wallet that charges a low standard interest rate, there’s less financial impact if you can’t repay your full statement balance.

Money Insider: Save money with the right credit card

Research from Sainsbury’s Bank Credit Cards this week revealed that 15 per cent of people making a large purchase on their plastic didn’t use one with 0 per cent interest on purchases

Playmobil

Bargain Hunter: Discounts at Playmobil let you give your children some retail therapy

Playmobil is offering 25 per cent discounts to Christmas shoppers

Last week was hangover time, when Stock Spirits, a vodka producer, distilled a profit warning that sent its shares crashing more than 25 per cent. (image: Rex Features)

No Pain No Gain: Vodka causes a hangover as shares in Stock Spirits slump

Last week was hangover time, when Stock Spirits, a vodka producer, distilled a profit warning that sent its shares crashing more than 25 per cent

Investment melting pot: the price of gold may have fallen but Artemis Strategic Assets believes its value cannot be debased

Mark Dampier: Strong returns can be found if you go the opposite way to the crowds

Investment melting pot: the price of gold may have fallen but Artemis Strategic Assets believes its value cannot be debased

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