Wealthy Lured To Buy Passion Investments

The golden touch of Britain’s latest Euromillions £107 million lottery winner instantly projected him in to the rich list.

The fourth largest UK lottery win ever sent car mechanic Neil Trotter, 41, into 745th place in the Sunday Times Rich List – above pop stars George Michael and Robbie Williams.

He scooped the jackpot after joking with his father-in-law and workmates that he would be a multimillionaire the next day.

Now, he plans to spend his cash on following his passion of motor racing – he came sixth in last year’s BMW Compact Cup for newcomer drivers.

Trotter can follow his sport without touching his fortune as £107 million a year generates more than £3 million in interest.

Antiques are a poor investment

Spending money wisely does not seem to be a trend for the super-rich.

A new study shows that many of the world’s wealthiest people disregard the business acumen that built their fortunes once they have disposable millions to spend.

Some spend on a lifestyle of excess, with never-ending holidays, fleets of luxury cars, helicopters and even personal jets at their disposal.

But for some reason, investing in antiques is a favourite hobby.

However, the study, by market research firm Wealth-X reveals that antiques are a poor investment with values lagging at levels last seen in the 1990s.

The statistic comes from the Antique Furniture Price Index, which hit a peak of 3575 in 2002, but now languishes at 2391.

Simon Smiles, global chief investment head for the ultra-high net worth segment at bankers UBS, considers antiques a poor investment.

Odd way to spend money

“Antiques are illiquid, emotional assets and significant, specialist knowledge is required to assess their potential financial risks and rewards,” he said.

“Most sales are made privately and the antiques industry is barely regulated.”

Nevertheless, passion investments like art and antiques, yachts, collectible cars and fine wine led to multimillionaires forking out around £48 million on their hobbies last year.

Wealth-X reckons billionaires own almost £20 billion of antiques, fashion, jewellery and collectible cars – an expense of £8.5 billion each on average.

The trap with passion investments is they mean something to the buyer, but the price is stripped right back by dealers who have no emotional attachment, but the knowledge to hike the price for another investor to maintain high profit margins.

“It seems odd to spend money this way for people who should be more financially astute, but perhaps they are just bored or like nice things around them regardless of the price,” said a spokesman.

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