I started listening to a podcast from Financial Times in the UK, The FT Money Show, because I’m interested in how people in other countries deal with their finances. I’ve heard the expression that “England and America are two countries separated by a common language.” It is true. Just from listening to two recent shows, I’ve learned quite a few things for which the terms are different in the UK and in the US. I had to look them up in Wikipedia. I’m listing them here with their rough equivalents in the US.
|Building Society||Savings & Loan|
|Current Account||Checking Account|
|Property Fund||open-end mutual fund which invests directly in real estate, uncommon in the US|
|Property Investment Trust||closed-end mutual fund which invests directly in real estate|
|gearing, geared||leverage, leveraged|
|Unit Trust||Mutual Fund|
|Individual Savings Account (ISA)||Roth IRA|
|Venture Capital Trust (VCT)||no equivalent in the US|
|dealing charges||(brokerage) commission|
|Base Rate||Federal Funds Rate|
|quid (1 quid = 1 pound)||buck (1 buck = 1 dollar)|
Terms aside, people in the UK are actually dealing with similar issues. There is concern for the housing market (flat to slightly down) and for the commercial real estate market (down 30-40%). There is speculation on what the British currency will do against the U.S. dollar, on whether the central bank will lower interest rate, talks about getting account opening bonuses for switching checking accounts and lowering utility costs by switching energy providers. It is quite interesting.