P2P-Banking Launches Database to Enable Investors to Compare IFISA Providers Easily

P2P-Banking launches a new IFISA database, that enables investors an easy comparison of offers by IFISA providers. UK taxpayers can invest up to 20,000 GBP per year tax-free in ISAs. This amount is per tax year, so a person could invest 20,000 GBP this tax year and invest 20,000 GBP in a different ISA next year. The Innovative Finance ISA, short IFISA, was introduced in 2016 with most offers becoming approved by HRMC only in the 2017/2018 tax year.

The new database of IFISA offers allows speedy selection and sorting to review IFISA products by different providers and then links to the provider’s website for in detail information. Investors can filter by interest rate, term, loan type, minimum investment amount, possibility of transfers in and out, flexible IFISA, bonus & cashback promotions and several other criteria. The  comparison focusses on IFISAs by p2p lending marketplaces but also lists IFISAs investing in crowd bonds and other investment types. Currently more than 15 IFISA providers are listed and P2P-Banking will list new offers as they are approved by HRMC and launched in order to help investors get the best IFISA rates that match their investment strategy and risk appetite.

Several companies have reported huge demand in their new IFISA offers. Lending Works reported a huge spike in investor deposits after launch and last week the consumer loans marketplace said, it has recorded £8.8m of subscriptions into its IFISA in the first 3 months with 815 investors lending. CapitalRise has stated earlier this month that the IFISA product raised 900,000 GBP in the first 4 weeks. Crowd2Fund, said that 95 per cent of its investments are now made through the tax free wrapper. CEO Chris Hancock said the platform is experiencing 50 per cent month-on-month growth and is expecting to originate 2 million GBP in loans in April. ‘Last week, 58 IFISAs were opened from 115 investor registrations,’ he said. ‘I think the IFISA market has grown three-fold in terms of investor demand over the past year.’

More p2p lending marketplaces have gained FCA approval recently and are preparing to go live with IFISA offers in the next weeks. Readers of P2P-Banking can subscribe to the free notification service and receive an email whenever the database is updated and a new provider is added.

Comparing MyC4 to Prosper

Researching the MyC4 concept (see previous post) there are some usability features that call for a comparision to Prosper.com:

  1. Auction: The model of Prosper seems much more straightforward to me then the auction model of MyC4. The possibility of bidding above the maximum interest rate as long as the weighted average interest is below it, gives it a major twist. Every lender on a loan ends up with a different interest rate while borrower nominal interest rate is the weighted average (mind-boggling, isn't it?). And the full transparency of all bids during bidding process is interesting.
  2. Usability, communication and transparency: The interface is designed for much interaction. Everywhere the user can post comments (to profiles, to blogs, to loans, to listings). And with a user added avatar on every comment, it is very personal. No anonymity since real names are used (not screen names). Anybody can view the loans other lenders are invested in. Users can add icons to their profile to show which motivation led them to MyC4 (be it profit, education, social lending, …) 
  3. Defaults. So far none, but naturally it is much to early to judge. Hopefully MyC4 will have defaults as low as Kiva and prove that third world borrowers are more reliable.

There will be continued coverage about my experiences at MyC4.