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The Times: Why a stocks and shares ISA is the perfect gift for a baby

09 September 2021Insights, Press7 mins read

The Times

Violet is five months old — a good age to start investing in the market, says her devoted uncle David Brenchley.

It’s always exciting when you can welcome a new baby to the family. This was certainly the case with the birth of my niece, Violet, 20 weeks ago. Her arrival was particularly meaningful because it came ten months after my father died.

My brother and his family live a three-hour train journey from me, so I’ve made it down to see them only twice, but the trips have been memorable.

At points during our get-togethers my thoughts have turned to practical matters. I suggested that we set up a Junior Isa (Jisa) so that Violet has a nest egg for when she turns 18. My brother and sister-inlaw were keen, so I’m starting things off. You’d think that for someone who writes and reads a lot about investing, building a pot would be fairly simple. But when it involves the people you love it becomes more complicated.
Jisas are tax-free savings accounts that can be set up by parents or guardians for children under 18. A total of £9,000 can be paid in to a Jisa in the 2021-22 tax year, and anyone can contribute.

Once the child turns 16 control of the account automatically passes to them, and they can withdraw money once they turn 18. That’s why it’s important to educate them about financial matters if the hope is that some of the money remains invested.