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Prudential International launches new portfolio account

Prudential International has introduced its new Portfolio Account, an open architecture single premium offshore portfolio bond.

The new account offers access to more than 2,000 funds from different managers, tax efficiency and four charging options, allowing investors to pick a structure that best suits their needs. The fund choices also extend to specialist types not available in the UK and those denominated in different currencies.

The investment grows free of tax as funds are not liable for income or capital gains tax, only the withholding tax levied on dividend income from some assets held in the funds. Tax deferral benefits mean that investors do not pay income tax on their investment profit until the money is taken out of the bond.

However, 5% of the original investment can still be withdrawn each year without investors paying tax immediately. If part of the investment is switched from one fund to another there is no capital gains tax liability on any profit made on the switch.

Prudential International said that for tax return purposes the Portfolio Account also simplifies matters as only the bond itself needs to be detailed, not each of the funds held in it. For individuals and trustees, the bond does not need to be detailed until a chargeable event arises.

The Portfolio Account requires a minimum investment of GBP50,000 and provides 20 free fund switches in the first year and 10 in subsequent years. There is also a choice of 11 currencies in which to put money in and take it out.

Richard Leeson, head of UK development for Prudential International, said: The Portfolio Account brings together for the first time factory-gate pricing and an almost unlimited range of collective investments from markets across the world and will provide an alternative for investors who might have looked at fund supermarkets or wraps in the past.