Important information - investment value can go up or down and you could get back less than you invest. If you're in any doubt about the suitability of a Stocks & Shares ISA, you should seek independent financial advice. The tax treatment of this product depends on your individual circumstances and may change in future. If you are uncertain about the tax treatment of the product you should contact HMRC or seek independent tax advice.
Choosing a Quick-start Fund
Our Quick-start Funds are an easy way to start investing in your ISA. Six low-cost funds have been specially selected by experts, and many experienced investors rely on them too.
Each fund carries a different level of risk, and you will need to consider the level of risk you are comfortable with. As a very general rule, investors tend to choose higher risk when investing over longer periods.
Remember that these risk levels are just a guide, and risk exists in every investment.
You can choose between three passive funds from Vanguard (shown below), and three actively managed sustainable funds from BMO.
Vanguard LifeStrategy® 20% Equity Fund
If you are looking for less risk, rather than higher returns, this fund is a great place to start.
Vanguard LifeStrategy® 60% Equity Fund
If you are comfortable with a little more risk, this fund is a good middle ground investment.
Vanguard LifeStrategy® 80% Equity Fund
For potentially higher returns, in exchange for more risk, this fund could suit your portfolio.
How to add our Quick-start Funds to your ISA
There are two ways you can get up and running with our Quick-start Funds, or any other investments you choose.
Popular ISA investments with ii customers
Here are the shares, funds, investment trusts and ETFs that are most held by our ISA investors (by GBP value, as at 31 October 2023). Our most popular investments should not be taken as personal recommendations to buy or sell a particular stock or fund, and are not intended to provide advice.
See also: Top ISA funds
Top 5 Shares
Top 5 Funds
Top 5 Investment Trusts
- Alliance Trust Ord (LSE:ATST)
- Scottish Mortgage Ord (LSE:SMT)
- City of London Ord (LSE:CTY)
- Personal Assets Ord (LSE:PNL)
- F&C Investment Trust Ord (LSE:FCIT)
Top 5 ETFs
What type of ISA investments do ii customers choose?
Here are the types of investments ii customers held in their ISA in the first half of 2023:
- Shares (40.87%)
- Investment trusts (26.12%)
- Funds (25.32%)
- Exchange-traded products such as ETFs (7.14%)
- Other (0.3%)
Source: interactive investor. Note: These figures represent assets held by ii ISA customers between 1 January and 30 June 2023.
What are the most common investment options for a Stocks and Shares ISA?
Individual stocks and shares
When you buy individual stocks and shares, you are buying a ‘piece’ of that company. The price rises and falls in line with demand for the shares.
Share prices can be unpredictable. You may make good gains over time, or you could lose money. For this reason, only experienced investors tend to choose individual shares.
Some people invest in shares for the ‘dividend’ – a share of the company’s profits distributed to shareholders, usually twice each year. These can be very appealing, but companies may withhold dividends if they are struggling. Other investors may prefer growth stocks, which might generate a capital return rather than dividend income.
Funds contain a mix of investments. For example, a fund that focuses on tech companies might include shares in Apple, Tesla and Zoom, amongst others.
Other investment funds - known as index tracker funds - follow an entire market index, such as the FTSE 100.
Investing in funds can reduce risk, compared with individual stocks and shares. This is because you are less affected by a few shares underperforming. However, there is still risk involved - funds can (and do) fall in value.
Investment trusts are similar to funds in that your money is invested across multiple companies. The main difference is that trusts can be traded on stock markets, like shares.
Again, this can be less risky than investing in individual shares, but there is still a risk of losing money.
Things to be aware of when building an ISA portfolio
Every investment fund and trust comes with management fees - in addition to your account charges. These are usually represented as an Ongoing Charges Figure (OCF). You can find these in each fund’s Key Information Document (KID).
These fees typically range from 0.25% to 1.8% and are usually taken from the value of your investments – not paid up-front.
A Stocks & Shares ISA lets you invest up to £20,000 each tax year without paying any tax on the gains. You can only have one Stocks & Shares ISA at a time.
If you want to invest more than £20,000 in a tax year, you can also open a Trading Account - but you may have to pay tax when you buy or sell the shares.
Risks when investing
Remember, all investing comes with a risk of losing money. You can reduce this risk by spreading your investments across multiple options, but there are no guarantees. You should never invest money that you can’t afford to lose.
Other popular ISA investment options
We offer one of the widest choice of international investments on the market, and you can hold up to 9 foreign currencies in your ii account.
Index tracker funds
A tracker fund spreads your investment across a number of companies that make up an 'index'. This can reduce risk, making index tracker funds popular among investors.
Ethical Stocks & Shares ISA
Many investors are looking to build portfolios that reflect their values, while still delivering growth. Our experts have identified a range of ethical investment options to help you.
AIM stands for Alternative Investment Market. AIM shares can be more volatile than other investments, but some investors include them to add some higher-risk diversification to a balanced portfolio. These shares may be more likely to lose money than other shares.
Some people invest to try and generate a regular income from things like dividends and interest. A Stocks and Shares ISA can be an ideal place to keep these income investments, as there is no tax on the profits.