UNIVERSAL ACCESS BONDS TRANSFORM INVESTMENT LANDSCAPE FOR US EX-PATS

  • Woodbrook Group announces launch of dynamic new financial products
  • UABs allow easy and compliant access to invest in diversified portfolios
  • ‘Investment game-changer for US ex-pats,’ says CEO Michael Doherty

New financial products that will dramatically alter the investment landscape for US ex-pats living across the globe have been announced today.

The launch of the Universal Access Bonds (UABs) has been described as “a game changer” for American ex-pats and US connected persons by the CEO of Woodbrook Group Holdings Limited Michael Doherty.

FATCA and stringent tax regulations over the past decade have severely curtailed US expatriates’ financial planning and investment capabilities.

Not anymore. The UABs allow ex-pats across the world, including Americans and US connected persons, easy and compliant access to the benefits of investing in a diversified portfolio through underlying funds.

The funds will be managed by a number of respected international financial institutions, with the process will be overseen by Woodbrook Group Holdings Limited, a leading international firm of financial advisers.

Commenting on the launch, Woodbrook Group CEO Michael Doherty said: “Universal Access Bonds are a game changer for American ex-pats living across the globe. They are a remarkably simple solution for ex-pats and US connected persons who are looking to invest in a diversified portfolio managed by top-tier investment managers.”

Mr Doherty added: “Woodbrook operates under the highest level international regulatory framework, which means we are look after clients of all nationalities all over the world.”

Woodbrook is regulated by the Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commissioner (CySEC). It holds a MiFID II investment license passported through the EEA along with IMD insurance mediation licenses through ICCS and IHK. Woodbrook recently announced the acquisition of Mondial (Dubai) LLC, one of the Emirates’ oldest established financial planning and wealth management companies which is regulated by the UAE Securities and Commodities Authority (SCA).

Commenting on the launch, Universal Access Bonds CEO Robert Rigby-Hall said: “I am delighted that Woodbrook, with their global reach and regulatory strength, is using UAB as their product for US ex-pats who have been in need of an investment solution for many years. Woodbrook is perfectly positioned to meet their needs with a strong culture of quality advice, client focus, and service delivery.”

Mr Rigby Hall said the new financial products will “change the investment landscape for ex-pats”, including the millions of Americans living outside the US with “a very limited choice of investments”.

He added: “Financial planning and investing for Americans has become harder in recent years with the IRS and FATCA causing Americans to be unwelcome at many financial institutions. UABs wrap underlying funds allow ex-pats, including Americans and US connected persons, easy and compliant access to the benefits of investing in a diversified global portfolio though underlying funds in multiple currencies.”

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

The two underlying funds are:

UBP Cautious
UAB aims to achieve modest appreciation over the longer term coupled with limited volatility in returns by reference to the UBP Cautious Fund. The reference fund is intending to invest in asset classes such as Cash and Cash Equivalent, Investment Grade Bonds, High Yield Bonds, Alternative Investments, Precious Metals, Commodities, and Equities, in both Emerging and Developed Markets. Investments may be implemented through pooled investment instruments or directly in underlying securities.

Reference Fund ESMA Risk Rating: 2

UBP Adventurous
UAB aims to achieve significant capital gains over the longer term by reference to the LodeStar UBP Adventurous Fund. Its strategy accommodates substantial volatility in returns. The investment policy of the reference fund will be to generate long term capital growth by investing in a mix of asset classes globally. These asset classes can include equities, fixed income (both government and corporate), Real Estate Investment Trusts and other Exchange Traded Funds that may give exposure to alternative strategies. Investments may be implemented through pooled investment instruments or directly in underlying securities.

Reference Fund ESMA Risk Rating: 6

How Universal Access Bonds work:

Universal Access Bonds allow ex-pats, including American citizens and US connected persons, easy and compliant access to the benefits of investing in a diversified portfolio, something that hasn’t been possible up until now.

The benefits of a UAB are:
Compliant: FATCA-compliant investments;
Liquid: Money in or out as with a mutual fund;
Established: European-regulated investments with proven top-tier asset managers
Reportable: Provide simple reports for client to file tax returns

Compliant
Non-compliant investments for U.S. citizens living overseas are taxed as income (up to 37%). Compliant investments like UABs will be taxed as capital gains tax (from 0%-20% subject to long/short-term considerations).

Liquid
Many US compliant overseas investments are pension based and cannot be accessed before retirement (age 50-59.5 years) without penalties. UAB is accessible from day 1 (consider short-term CGT liability) subject to monthly liquidity. UABs work throughout the world so the investor can move from country to country without disrupting investment and savings goals.

Established
UAB gives investors access to top-tier managers and portfolios normally only available for very high initial investment values. The UAB has a low fee associated with it, meaning it’s a cost-efficient way to access an actively managed portfolio product that usually only high net worth Americans living overseas can access. There are no hidden fees.

Reportable
UAB is reported in a similar fashion to a domestic mutual fund. The holder can file an 8621 Form because UAB is a Qualifying Elected Fund (QEF). Failure to report overseas assets can lead to fines or federal prosecution. Incorrect reporting of complicated assets can lead to over-taxation or subsequent accounting costs.

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