Investors want purely Aim stocks for ISAs

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MORE than 94 per cent of investors in the Alternative Investment Market (Aim) want the right to include stocks purely traded on Aim to be included in ISAs, research from the Share Centre shows.

The research, released ahead of the closing of a Treasury consultation on the matter this week, suggested that the current method of investing in certain Aim stocks using an ISA is “too complicated” for many individual investors.

Two in five Aim investors said that they didn’t know that under current legislation Aim traded stocks were only available in an ISA if they were dual traded, meaning that not many have been able to take advantage of any tax efficiencies, said the Share Centre.

The tax benefit and simplification of allowing purely Aim-listed stock into ISA wrappers would attract more investment into the market, the Share Centre added.

Gavin Oldham, chief executive of The Share Centre, said: “The announcement in the Budget to abolish stamp duty on Aim shares as from 2014 is a significant step forwards, but we believe the initiative to allow Aim shares into ISA portfolios can be implemented much sooner than the summer recess. Aim investment is a crucial growth engine for the economy.

“Allowing stocks and shares ISAs to include Aim investments would not just be popular; it would help small but growing UK companies raise the finance they need to play their part in the economic recovery.”

He added that changing the regulations would broaden investors’ choice if they want to invest tax efficiently in growing firms.