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14 May 2008

Money Marketing

  • New intermediary chief at A&L

    15 May 2008

    Alliance & Leicester has appointed Viviane Clement as head of intermediary sales, making her responsible for the intermediary sales division.

  • 1.4M loss for Nucleus

    15 May 2008

    Nucleus Financial Group made a 1.4m loss in its first full year of trading to December 31, 2007. The firm says it is still on target to break even by the end of this year and aims to be in profit during 2009.

  • 42% Of mortgage and investment ads fail test

    15 May 2008

    Over 40 per cent of all mortgage and investment advertising does not comply fully with FSA regulations, according to Financial Services Consumer Panel research.

  • 82.5% of first time buyers use brokers

    15 May 2008

    The number of first time buyers using a mortgage intermediary has increased to 82.5 per cent in Q1 of 2008, up 10 per cent from last year, says the Council of Mortgage Lenders.

  • A shaw thing

    15 May 2008

    Sam Shaw is a reporter on Money MarketingIt took me most of the sunny bank holiday to recover from last week's Headline Money Awards, which many of the attendees seemed to use as an excuse for writing off the rest of Thursday and Friday as well.

  • A&L increases rates on BTL

    19 May 2008

    Alliance & Leicester is increasing its rate on its two year fixed rate buy to let product from tomorrow.

  • ABI rejigs protection committees

    16 May 2008

    The Association of British Insurers has restructured its protection committees to separate day-to-day work from long-term strategic thinking.

  • Absolute beginnings

    15 May 2008

    After months of consultation, the Investment Management Association has started an absolute return sector for funds that target positive returns in all market conditions. It initially comprises 17 funds, of which five are UK-based.

  • Advantage points for OPM

    15 May 2008

    OPM believes its experience in investing directly in asset classes such as UK equities gives it an advantage over multi-managers who invest entirely in investment funds.

  • Adviser Fund Index - Selection of the fittest

    15 May 2008

    On May 1 last year, the rules regarding the use of funds of funds in the AFI changed. Previously, panellists could only include multi-manager funds if they were an integral part of their in-house investment model.

  • Advisers demand tele-underwriting

    15 May 2008

    Advisers will stop using protection providers that do not offer tele-underwriting by qualified nurses, warns CBK Colchester principal Peter Chadborn.

  • Advisers urged to be more business-like

    15 May 2008

    Most adviser firms are "stuck in adolescence" and need to move quickly to transform their businesses to take account of the future regulatory landscape, says consultancy The Adviser Gym.

  • Aegon launches Income for Life retirement solution

    14 May 2008

    Aegon's new at-retirement solution Income for Life aims to bridge the gap between annuities and income drawdown.

  • Aegon takes hit to profits but sales stay stable

    15 May 2008

    Aegon UK's profits fell by 23 per cent to £34.3m in the first quarter of this year from £44m in the first quarter of 2007.

  • Aegon, Standard & Clerical receive Unipass Easy Access Award

    15 May 2008

    Three new providers have passed internal audits to gain the Unipass Easy Access Award.

  • Against the grain

    15 May 2008

    The FSA's interim report on the RDR aims to boost consumer confidence in the retail financial products market by marking a separation between sales and advice. The argument that these changes are necessary to allow customers to tell the difference between advice and selling is spurious. The market has been operating for 20 years with tied and independent advisers distinguishing themselves with mandatory disclosure without evident problems.

  • Aifa fears second-tier regulation via Fosbook

    15 May 2008

  • Aifa to recruit new policy director

    20 May 2008

    Aifa has announced it will not be recruiting a new deputy director general to replace Fay Goddard, but is instead looking for candidates to fill the new role of policy director.

  • All together now

    16 May 2008

    We seem to be seeing a trend for mortgage networks and those purely in the IFA space teaming up together, with Home of Choice having recently forged an introducer arrangement with IN Partnership.

  • Alliance Trust Savings adds to business development team

    20 May 2008

    Alliance Trust Savings has added to its business development team including a new Scottish BDM.

  • AMI hits out at FSA over last week's dual pricing speech

    20 May 2008

    The Association of Mortgage Intermediaries has hit out at the FSA over its speech on dual pricing at the mortgage business expo in Manchester last week.

  • AMI plan to beat our toughest challenge

    15 May 2008

    The mortgage intermediary profession is facing its toughest challenge since the introduction of mortgage regulation.

  • Asda cover for the over 50s

    15 May 2008

    Asda is offering an over-50s life cover protection plan.

  • Barings aiming to use CGT changes for yield

    15 May 2008

    Barings Asset Management has put off the launch of its European income fund as it looks to make use of the recent changes to capital gains tax.

  • Barings announces global agriculture launch

    19 May 2008

    Barings Asset Management is to launch a soft-commodities fund under the management of Jonathan Blake.

  • Barings to exploit CGT changes to increase yield

    14 May 2008

    Barings Asset Management is to defer the launch of its European income fund in a bid to take advantage of the recent capital gains tax changes.

  • Bestinvest brings in finance director to aid expansion

    15 May 2008

    Bestinvest has appointed Stephen Cooke as finance director.

  • Beyond comparison

    15 May 2008

    Down the road from me, there is an empty shop. It has been vacant for the best part of two years, probably a while longer. It is hard to see it ever returning to its former role - as a branch of Winsover Howden, a broking firm with a proud tradition in London and the South-east.

  • Blemain Finance offers help to Future's brokers

    20 May 2008

    Blemain Finance is offering a helping hand to brokers who may not be able to get a decision in principle of complete their second charge cases within Future Mortgage's normal pipeline rules.

  • BNP Paribas launches white-label Sipp

    20 May 2008

    BNP Paribas Securities Services is launching a white-label Sipp solution.

  • Broker Talkback

    15 May 2008

    Is FSA chief executive Hector Sants right to suggest that the recent dual-pricing strategies of many lenders do not break TCF rules?

  • Broker will name and shame lenders over dual-pricing

    15 May 2008

    A mortgage adviser has bought the internet domain name lendershallofshame. co.uk in a bid to name and shame lenders which undercut brokers.

  • Brokers becoming more adviser-like, says A&L

    19 May 2008

    Almost 80 per cent of mortgage brokers feel their role is becoming more advisory in response to current markets, says Alliance & Leicester.

  • Brown Advisory launches combined American fund to the UK

    19 May 2008

    Recent entrant to the UK market Brown Advisory has launched a fund combining their three US equity strategies.

  • C&G takes the direct approach

    15 May 2008

    An adviser has slammed Cheltenham & Gloucester for using the current market conditions to push life and protection products on to his client in exchange for a remortgage.

  • C&G to increase rates by 0.25%

    19 May 2008

    Cheltenham & Gloucester is to withdraw its entire range of mortgage products at end of play today, increasing rates by 0.25 per cent.

  • Cabinet notes show 10% fall forecast

    15 May 2008

    Secret Cabinet briefing notes, accidentally revealed by housing minister Caroline Flint, forecast UK house prices to fall "at best" by 5-10 per cent this year.

  • Callaghan departs Gartmore

    15 May 2008

    Gartmore has confirmed the departure of European fund manager Tim Callaghan.

  • Charity calls on Government to act on repossessions

    15 May 2008

    Money Advice Trust is calling on the Government to review the repossession action taken by sub prime lenders not regulated by the FSA.

  • Clear thinking

    15 May 2008

    The publication of the FSA's interim report on the retail distribution review is good news for those involved in the training and competence debate who see the RDR as an opportunity to raise standards in line with public expectation.

  • Corporate course

    15 May 2008

    For the patient stock-picker, the current volatility - combined with the rather gloomy prospects for the global market - could offer a wealth of opportunities.

  • 'Cost of regulation set to hit 50bn'

    15 May 2008

    Spending on regulation and compliance for the world's 100 biggest financial institutions could almost double to 50bn by 2010 after a rise of more than 30 per cent over the past three years, according to Deloitte.

  • Coventry wins broker acclaim

    15 May 2008

    Coventry Building Society has been praised by mortgage brokers for being intermediary-friendly.

  • Cracking advice for crunch times

    15 May 2008

    Money Marketing has launched a Cracking the Crunch section on our website.

  • Cracking the safe

    15 May 2008

    The variable annuity market has seen a lot of activity in the last two years and at least two providers, Standard Life and Aegon, have plans to enter the fray this year.

  • Critical approach paying off

    15 May 2008

    Friends Provident paid out 86.5 per cent of critical-illness claims last year, up from 81.3 per cent tin 2006.

  • Crunch to raise PI costs

    15 May 2008

    Professional indemnity insurance premiums for mortgage brokers of less than £500 are likely to be a thing of the past, says PI broker PYV.

  • Darling announces tax working group membership

    19 May 2008

    The CBI's Richard Lambert, HSBC's Douglas Flint and Nicolas Moreau from Axa have been appointed to a new multinational tax forum.

  • Daydream believers

    15 May 2008

    Last week, I looked at the new day counting provisions for determining the matter of UK residence. A number of cases have been heard on this issue recently. The most well publicised has probably been the Gaines-Cooper case but there have also been a couple concerning airline pilots. One was Grace v HMRC and the other was the Shepherd case.

  • Default lines

    15 May 2008

    A few weeks ago, pension and benefit consultants Watson Wyatt predicted that the at-retirement market could grow at around 20 per cent a year for the next five years that by 2012 this section of the financial services market would be worth 30bn.

  • Direct deal dilemmas

    19 May 2008

    So the FSA moved last week to say that mortgage advisers can charge for advice when recommending that clients take out a mortgage direct from a lender.

  • Direct deals deemed fair play by regulator

    15 May 2008

    FSA chief executive Hector Sants has made it clear the regulator does not believe that dual-pricing on mortgages goes against the principles of treating customers fairly.

  • Discharge of duty

    15 May 2008

    Shopping around is a concept that can never be over-emphasised to consumers, especially where annuities are concerned.

  • Dodging torpedoes

    15 May 2008

    Investment flows are undoubtedly polarised at the moment. Some investors are seeking high potential returns through emerging markets, specialist funds and singlecountry funds such as India and Russia. Others are seeking the safe haven of cash or more recently bonds. The latter, as I have mentioned before, look good value.

  • Doesn't treating customers fairly apply to life offices?

    15 May 2008

    I recently stumbled upon a piece of paper from Friends Provident which read: "As part of our policy to treat all customers fairly, we are upgrading our contracted-out policies to be more in line with stakeholder. As a result of this, we have capped commission at a maximum level of 2.5 per cent for all rebate contributions received after April 6, 2005."

  • 'Don't expect any uplift in commercial property'

    15 May 2008

    Seven Investment Management's Justin Urquhart Stewart says investors should stay away from UK commercial property.

  • Dropping the dime

    14 May 2008

    New Star founder and chairman John Duffield has wielded the axe on his firm’s range of funds again this week after it was announced that the group is looking to merge two of its struggling single-country funds.

  • Dual route is road to conflict

    15 May 2008

    FSA chief executive Hector Sants' comments on mortgage dualpricing at last week's Building Societies Association conference make the FSA's position on the matter clear.

  • Edeus sets up savings plans

    15 May 2008

    Edeus has launched two savings products with Newcastle Building Society. They are a guaranteed minimum return account and a 50:50 balanced FTSE account. Both saving products, introduced through Edeus, will give intermediaries a procuration fee of up to 2.75 per cent of the deposit.

  • Equity release could ease care crisis

    14 May 2008

    Equity release should form part of long term care solutions, says Home & Capital.

  • EU gives GPPs the green light for auto-enrolment

    16 May 2008

    The European Commission has confirmed automatic enrolment of members into contract-based schemes, such as group personal pensions, from 2012, is consistent with EU law.

  • Every crunch has a silver lining

    15 May 2008

    At last, some good news to emerge from the credit crunch - anyone lucky enough to be thinking about buying an annuity now will benefit from the highest rates on offer for some time.

  • Ex-Scottish Re chief to be Pearl Life MD

    15 May 2008

    Former Scottish Re International chief executive officer David Huntley has been appointed the new managing director of Pearl Life.

  • Fay Goddard confirmed to be joining PFS

    20 May 2008

    The CII Group has officially announced the appointment of Fay Goddard as chief executive of the Personal Finance Society.

  • Fay Goddard to take over from Tim Eadon at PFS

    19 May 2008

    Former Aifa deputy director general Fay Goddard is tipped to take over from Tim Eadon as chief executive of the Personal Finance Society, following the announcement of Eadon’s resignation yesterday.

  • Fear and lending

    15 May 2008

    Are lenders in danger of becoming too cautious? Despite the Bank of England's £50bn rescue package, we have seen further evidence of lenders tightening criteria by cutting maximum loan to values (Abbey and Nationwide), introducing higher rates for those borrowing more than 75 per cent LTV (Alliance & Leicester) and hiking rates (too many lenders to mention by name).

  • First Direct resumes lending

    19 May 2008

    First Direct has resumed offering mortgages to borrowers today after withdrawing from the market in April.

  • FISA updates website with more secured loan information

    15 May 2008

    The Finance Industry Standards Association has relaunched its website with new information on secured loans regulation and compliance.

  • 'Five a day' plan for financial health

    15 May 2008

    JP Morgan Asset Management wants the Government to sponsor an awareness campaign supporting the work of IFAs including a "five a day" plan to boost financial wellbeing.

  • Former Spurs keeper to run farming fund

    15 May 2008

    Eclectica Asset Management is to launch a second agriculture fund under the management of former Tottenham Hotspur goalkeeper Espen Baardsen.

  • FSA aims to help with fees for direct advice

    15 May 2008

    The FSA is investigating how it can remove regulatory barriers to make it easier for mortgage brokers to charge a fee for advising a client to go for a direct deal.

  • FSA clarifies KFI requirements for fee-based mortgage advice

    15 May 2008

    The FSA has moved to clarify its rules around mortgage disclosure to enable mortgage brokers to charge for advice when recommending that clients take out a mortgage direct from a lender.

  • FSA disappointed by plea-bargain delays

    15 May 2008

    The FSA has hit out at the Government for dragging its feet in sanctioning the new plea-bargaining powers the regulator will be given to help curb market abuse.

  • FSA fines Thinc Group £900,000 for sub-prime failings

    15 May 2008

    The FSA has fined Thinc Group £900,000 for sub-prime record keeping failings.

  • FSA looks to appeal as ban on GI broker is quashed

    15 May 2008

    The FSA is seeking permission to appeal after the Financial Services and Markets Tribunal overruled the regulator's decision to cancel general insurance intermediary Salman Khan's permission to undertake regulated activities.

  • FSA puts pressure on providers to improve stress-testing

    15 May 2008

    The FSA says firms need to improve and regularly review their stress-tests to avoid future vulnerability, as proven by the state of overall financial climate of the last nine months.

  • FSA rides forth as the new champion of advice

    15 May 2008

    The FSA has at long last woken up to the fact that while it still has some issues to deal with in the IFA sector, most of the problems in the retail financial services sector have been created by the banks.

  • FSA warns aggregators on fairness

    15 May 2008

    The FSA has called on insurance comparison sites to ensure they are treating users fairly after uncovering a mixed bag of good and bad practice in the market.

  • FSCS confirms first default of mortgage broker

    20 May 2008

    The Financial Services Compensation Scheme has declared mortgage firm Kingsfield and its adviser Gordon Benville in default and has started paying claims against the advisor.

  • Future Mortgages shuts up shop

    19 May 2008

    Citi Bank subsidiary Future Mortgages has become the latest lender to close its doors to new lending.

  • 'Give FSA top job to someone from Bank of England'

    15 May 2008

    The job of FSA chairman should go to someone with high-level Bank of England experience, says a financial services thinktank.

  • Goddard is joining the CII

    15 May 2008

    Aifa deputy director-general Fay Goddard is to take a senior role at the Chartered Insurance Institute.

  • Goodfellow is new BSA chairman

    15 May 2008

    Skipton Building Society chief executive John Goodfellow has been elected chairman of the Building Societies Association for 2008/09.

  • Goodwin quits Credit Suisse

    19 May 2008

    Credit Suisse global head of equities Kim Goodwin has left the firm after less than two years.

  • Govt breaking its bargain with the people says Cameron

    19 May 2008

    Conservative leader David Cameron has attacked the Government for "breaking its bargain" with the people to deliver quality services in return for taxes.

  • Green money is focus for Aifa seminar

    15 May 2008

    The Association of Independent Financial Advisers is to host a seminar on ethical and green investment as part of National Ethical Investment Week.

  • Growing trend goes with the grain

    15 May 2008

    From time to time, I am afforded the opportunity to share my views on what is happening in world markets with a wider audience through radio or TV. Last week provided just such an opportunity when news was thin on the ground and a wider trawling of the stories circulating on investment topics was necessary. The news that the Indian government was considering banning futures trading in agricultural commodities caught my eye and led to deeper research in the following days.

  • Halifax to cut rates by average of 0.15%

    19 May 2008

    Halifax is cutting some mortgage rates by an average of 15 basis points.

  • HBOS completes £500m UK securitisation

    20 May 2008

    HBOS has completed the first public UK residential mortgage backed securitisation deal completely placed to investors since July last year.

  • HBOS sells stake in Rightmove

    19 May 2008

    HBOS has sold its entire stake in property website Rightmove for £59.2 million.

  • Henderson turning to corporate bonds

    15 May 2008

    Henderson's multi-manager team is increasing its exposure to investment-grade corporate bonds as prices already reflect a major recession and higher default rates, particularly in the banking sector.

  • High risk customers to end up on SVR, says Mform.co.uk

    20 May 2008

    Borrowers regarded as high risk may only be offered standard variable rate deals by their existing lender under new "customer profiling" rules when their current mortgage offers run out.

  • History dictates long road to recovery for US markets

    15 May 2008

    Fannie Mae vice-president and chief economist Doug Duncan has warned it is likely to be three years before the US will see risk spreads come back.

  • HSBC aims to go from £90m to 1bn

    15 May 2008

    HSBC managing director of UK wholesale Andy Clark believes the company's trio of open funds will break through the £1bn barrier before the end of 2009.

  • Hunt review manager defends appeal stance

    15 May 2008

    Introducing a formal appeal process for the Financial Ombudsman Service would slow down complaint handling and worsen accessibility to the service, claims Hunt review project manager Chris Kenny.

  • IFAs can beef up profits through outsourcing

    16 May 2008

    IFAs should look to outsourcing in order to increase their profits, says threesixty.

  • In the interim

    15 May 2008

    Paraphrasing the line from that great film Jaws: "Just when you thought it was safe to go into the water" seems very appropriate on hearing the news that you have to be working for the client to be an adviser.

  • Income protection sales down 14 per cent

    16 May 2008

    Swiss Re paints a dismal picture in its latest Term & Health Watch report, which shows income protection sales were down 14.3 per cent last year compared with 2006.

  • Inflation could cut retirement spending by 40%

    14 May 2008

    Increased longevity and inflation can cut people’s spending power in retirement by as much as 40 per cent over 25 years, according to Ernst & Young.

  • Insurers get it in neck over Omo materials

    15 May 2008

    The FSA pulled no punches this week with its stark warning to life companies that open market option standards for annuities had to dramatically improve after discovering shocking numbers of consumer correspondence failings.

  • Investment matters - Kira Nickerson

    15 May 2008

    The Investment Management Association's launch of an absolute return sector begs the question as to what exactly constitutes absolute return? And how exactly does it differ from total return? Or targeted returns for that matter.

  • L&G says adviser confidence crunched

    15 May 2008

    Legal & General is seeing a drop in adviser confidence as a direct result of the credit crunch. The mortgage division of L&G saw a 50 per cent drop in the number of advisers predicting better sales and protection sales are also expected to decline.

  • Legg Mason adds Dublin fund duo

    15 May 2008

    Legg Mason is to bolster its offshore range with a European fixed income fund and a 130/30 fund.

  • Lenders are told to stop burying the bad news

    15 May 2008

    Senior technical manager at John Charcol Ray Boulger has called on lenders not to dress up bad news about product withdrawals.

  • Life companies fail on open market option

    14 May 2008

    The FSA has warned life companies that Open Market Option standards for annuities must dramatically improve after uncovering shocking evidence that nearly 40 per cent of their consumer correspondence fails to meet regulatory requirements.

  • Life companies fail on open market option

    15 May 2008

    The FSA has warned life companies that open market option standards for annuities must improve dramatically after uncovering shocking evidence that almost 40 per cent of their consumer correspondence fails to meet regulatory requirements.

  • Liontrust appoints Rob Page to marketing role

    14 May 2008

    Liontrust Asset Management has announced the appointment of ex-New Star marketing director Rob Page.

  • Listen and learn

    15 May 2008

    The FSA has clearly moved on. Its interim RDR report notes that "the market called for a simpler marketplace and a clear separation between advice and sales".

  • Lloyds sends further 450 jobs to India

    16 May 2008

    Lloyds TSB has announced that its information technology division will be exporting up to 450 UK-based jobs to India over the next nine months.

  • LV= pays 86% of IP and CI claims

    14 May 2008

    LV= paid 86 per cent of income protection and critical illness claims in 2007.

  • Merger plans for New Star funds

    15 May 2008

    New Star is to merge two single-country funds. The 5.5m Japan fund will merge into the 105m Pacific growth and the 7.7m North America fund merges with the 12.6m North America Fof portfolio.

  • 'Midas investors will reap long-term rewards'

    15 May 2008

    The Midas funds have suffered a setback in performance because their overseas prop-erty holdings have continued to trade at a discount to net asset value. High volatility has also affected the quoted value of some structured holdings and a preference for value stocks has hurt as these have been hit by the credit crunch.

  • Mirae adds to UK team

    20 May 2008

    Mirae Asset Global Investors has announced the appointment Hendrik Cosijn von Ripperda and Andrew Lawley as senior executives.

  • Misselling alert on lifetime annuities

    15 May 2008

    Living Time chief executive Kim Lerche-Thomsen has branded lifetime annuities as "Dickensian" products and claims they could become the next misselling scandal.

  • Money extra is offloaded

    15 May 2008

    AWD Chase de Vere is offloading telesales and client servicing operations arm Moneyextra as it brings its business units under a single brand.

  • Money Marketing Markets: "Rights issues and rampant inflation dent confidence"

    16 May 2008

    Any hopes that the credit crunch is close to an end were dashed this week with cash calls and writedowns once again battering the banking sector.

  • Mortgage Expo: Advisers say self-cert/fast-track fraud is rife

    14 May 2008

    Mortgage advisers have hit out at self-certification and fast-track mortgages today at the Mortgage Business Expo declaring they are rife with fraud.

  • Mortgage Expo: FSA warns mortgage fraud set to increase

    14 May 2008

    The FSA has warned that the number of mortgage fraud cases will increase following several years of lenders focusing on volume of business rather than quality.

  • Mortgage Expo: Govt must pump £350bn into market says Wriglesworth

    14 May 2008

    Mortgage guru John Wriglesworth has called on the Government to pump £350bn into the UK mortgage market through its Special Liquidity Scheme.

  • MPs berate the banks for blaming FSA for crunch

    15 May 2008

    MPs have attacked the banking sector for using the FSA as a scapegoat for the credit crunch.

  • N&P wants risk-based cash rules for brokers

    15 May 2008

    Norwich & Peterborough chief executive Matthew Bullock has called on the FSA to introduce a variable capital regime for brokers as part of its retail distribution review.

  • Nationwide slices rates on fixed deals

    15 May 2008

    Nationwide is cutting some of its fixed-rate loans by up to 0.3 per cent from May 16, including two-year fixed, two-year fixed without fee and two-year remortgage.

  • Networks linking up in financial planning deal

    15 May 2008

    Mortgage network Home of Choice has set up a strategic partnership with IFA network IN Partnership to offer a full financial planning service.

  • New houses drop 21% in first quarter, says DCLG

    16 May 2008

    The number of new housing starts in the first quarter of 2008 have dropped 21 per cent to 32,100 compared to the previous quarter, official figures from the Government have revealed.

  • New release of life

    15 May 2008

    The equity-release market has seen a fall in recent demand but remains fairly stable in comparison with the mortgage market.

  • New Star economist predicts 4% inflation

    15 May 2008

    New Star chief economist Simon Ward says inflation could reach 4 per cent this year if energy prices continue to rise, ending hopes of early base rate cuts.

  • Noland Carter joins Heartwood

    19 May 2008

    Heartwood Wealth Management has appointed former Barclays and Rothschild Private Bank CIO Noland Carter to be its chief investment officer and head of the investment management division.

  • NU reverts back to monthly valuations on property funds

    15 May 2008

    Norwich Union has reverted back to monthly valuations for its property funds after seeing a rise in cash levels and sharp falls in redemptions.

  • Octopus and Openwork in multi-asset partnership

    15 May 2008

    Openwork is teaming up with alternative investment specialist Octopus in an investment joint venture called Omnis Investments.

  • OFT bans Scottish estate agent

    19 May 2008

    The Office of Fair Trading has made a prohibition order against an estate agent in Scotland banning him from estate agency work.

  • On the warpath

    15 May 2008

    The RDR, as described in interim form, looks just like it should. There is a treaty or two to negotiate but we will all be home by Christmas. The brave and fair Amanda Bowe has sent the complexifiers packing.

  • Openwork in sales shake-up

    15 May 2008

    Openwork has made 15 staff redundant after a shake-up that sees members of its sales and marketing team leave the firm.

  • Outflow of staff from Origen as 18 quit

    15 May 2008

    Four senior managers and around 14 advisers have left Origen in the last six weeks.

  • Pause in rate cuts is 'missed opportunity'

    15 May 2008

    The Council of Mortgage Lenders says it is disappointed the Bank of England's monetary policy committee did not cut base rate last week, failing to anticipate worsening economic conditions.

  • Peter Barrett joins Genworth Financial

    19 May 2008

    Ex-Charcol managing director Peter Barrett has joined Genworth Financial as senior vice president.

  • PFS launches equity release support package

    15 May 2008

    The Personal Finance Society has created a new member support package Promoting Excellence in Equity Release.

  • Portal points

    15 May 2008

    The reporting on the Bates' conference in last week's issue surprised me. Andrew's presentation, which we thank him for and which was arguably the highlight of the week, was indeed critical in some areas of the way that Money Portal manages its regulatory businesses. However, the article was unbalanced and missed two very important points.

  • PosSol picks Carter as chief operating officer

    15 May 2008

    Positive Solutions has appointed former Origen Financial Services risk management and compliance director Greg Carter as chief operating officer.

  • Potter warning of further falls

    15 May 2008

    Thames River co-head of multi-manager Gary Potter says he is sceptical of the current market rally and warns that the UK and US are moving from a credit crisis to a solvency crisis.

  • Practise what we preach

    15 May 2008

    HBOS is preparing for a £4bn rights issue only a month after declaring that it had no liquidity problems. It will also apparently be one of the biggest participants in the Bank of England's £50bn scheme exchanging mortgages for bonds.

  • Praise for FSA's 'positive' thinking on RDR

    15 May 2008

    The retail distribution review interim report is the most positive thing to come out of the FSA for years, says Informed Choice joint managing director Nick Bamford.

  • Prime Minister warns of need to meet £6bn LTC shortfall

    15 May 2008

    The Prime Minister says "radical reform" is needed to address the £6bn shortfall in funding for long-term care.

  • Professional performance

    15 May 2008

    Pagan Osborne is a firm of legal, financial and property specialists. Providing holistic professional services advice that meets all our clients' needs has always been central to our business philosophy.

  • Pru brings new flexible Sipp to market

    20 May 2008

    Prudential has launched FundSipp, a flexible self-invested personal pension in partnership with Cofunds.

  • Push to keep tied and muti-tied advice, urges E&Y

    20 May 2008

    Product providers and banks need to convince the FSA that there is a real need for tied and multi-tied advice ahead of the next RDR report in October, according to Ernst & Young.

  • 'RDR won't work without tiered advice'

    15 May 2008

    The FSA's proposal to separate advice and sales is "impossibly flimsy" and unlikely to see the light of day in its present form, claims Beachcroft Regulatory Consulting.

  • Reform the fos to bring justice

    15 May 2008

    As part of Lord Hunt's independent review of the Financial Ombudsman Service, he was asked to consider whether the FOS should do more to increase its visibility and accessibility to those it is designed to serve.

  • Relief mission

    15 May 2008

    I have just come across another pension scandal that is almost as corrosive for the people involved as many of those that have grabbed the headlines over the last decade. It is not a case of fraud, underfunding or bad actuarial calculations. I am talking about the hundreds of thousands of high-earners in private workplace pensions who are missing out on a fifth of their pension contributions because they are failing to claim higher-rate tax relief.

  • RICS says no rerun of early 1990s despite 40% fall in transactions

    19 May 2008

    The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors has insisted the property market will not face a rerun of the early 1990s despite predicting that transactions will fall by at least 40 per cent this year.

  • Risk and reward

    15 May 2008

    There are very few products which pay a tax-free income of 8 per cent a year without a great deal of risk.

  • Rock sets out new range as arrears soar and lending dives

    15 May 2008

    Northern Rock has seen the number of borrowers in arrears soar in the first quarter as its mortgage book shrinks.

  • Route planner

    15 May 2008

    My husband and I are approaching retirement age in three years time and he has been offered a two-year contract abroad. We have 101 questions that need answering before we make a decision but perhaps most important are the different financial implications that present themselves if: a: My husband goes abroad but I stay in the UK. b: I go for only part of the time. c: I go for the whole duration of the contract. d: He turns down the offer.

  • RSM Bentley Jennison acquires part of Wenham Major

    20 May 2008

    Professional services firm RSM Bentley Jennison has acquired the audit, accounting and tax compliance arm of accounting firm Wenham Major.

  • Rules won't end confidence crisis

    15 May 2008

    Building Societies Association outgoing chairman Iain Cornish warns it could take between 18 months and two years for confidence to return to the mortgage market.

  • Sandler says 5% fall in house prices would strain Rock plan

    20 May 2008

    Northern Rock executive chairman Ron Sandler has admitted a serious fall in house prices could significantly dent the bank's plan to pay back its £27bn Bank of England loan by 2010.

  • Scot Prov's Phil Alibone dies of cancer

    15 May 2008

    Former Scottish Provident national account director Phil Alibone has passed away after suffering liver cancer.

  • 'Seasonal figures failing to show the real picture'

    15 May 2008

    John Charcol senior technical manager Ray Boulger has warned economists that too much weight is being given to seasonally adjusted house price figures.

  • Simon Rogerson

    15 May 2008

    Octopus Investments is one of the UK's fastest-growing alternative investment specialists. The company's revenue and customer base has more than doubled every year for the last five years and it now manages funds of over £500m.

  • Six on list for FSA

    15 May 2008

    There are six candidates in the running to replace Sir Callum McCarthy as FSA chairman, including Lloyds TSB deputy chief executive Michael Fairey, Money Marketing understands.Fairey, 59, is retiring from the bank in the summer and is a member of the FSA's retail financial services group.

  • Skandia adds BlackRock fund to platforms

    16 May 2008

    Skandia has added BlackRock's UK absolute alpha fund to its platforms.

  • Skipton BS withdraws SVR

    16 May 2008

    Skipton Building Society is withdrawing its standard variable rate for new business with immediate effect.

  • Small shareholders seek judicial review on Northern Rock

    15 May 2008

    A group of 150,000 of Northern Rock's small private shareholders have filed an application for a judicial review of the compensation terms being offered by the Government.

  • Sobering thoughts

    15 May 2008

  • 'Staggering returns' from corporate bond funds

    15 May 2008

    Tora Partnership principal Brian Tora believes the diversity in yields has made fixed interest one of the most exciting areas of the market.

  • Standard absolute fund goes retail

    15 May 2008

    Standard Life Investments is making its global absolute return strategies fund available to retail investors.

  • Standard platform glitch halted income

    15 May 2008

    Standard Life has rectified an error on its FundZone platform which was preventing income being paid into a number of client accounts.

  • Stay cautious over equities, says Threadneedle

    14 May 2008

    Threadneedle is urging investors to retain a cautious approach to UK equities, despite recent upturn.

  • Swiss Re tells protection providers to up their game

    20 May 2008

    Swiss Re has had a pop at protection providers after its latest Term & Health Watch, put out last week, painted a depressingly gloomy picture of the state of the protection market.

  • Take it to the limit

    15 May 2008

    Following the changes to the inheritance tax treatment of trusts contained in the Finance Act 2006, the Association of British Insurers asked HM Revenue & Customs to increase the IHT reporting limits for chargeable transfers to reduce the number of returns made where no tax will be payable.

  • Tenet backs simplification of RDR

    20 May 2008

    The FSA has done the right thing by oversimplifying the RDR interim report, rather than working backwards from a complicated structure, according to Tenet Group.

  • TFC Homeloans surviving packager crisis

    15 May 2008

    TFC Homeloans says it is surviving beyond many of its competitors in the packaging market as a result of the credit crunch with a 30 per cent rise in new applications this month.

  • The bigger picture

    15 May 2008

    Whether you are a private investor, an IFA or a fund manager, there appear to be few, if any, obvious investment choices at present.

  • The colours of money

    15 May 2008

    Ethical investing has become part of the mainstream market over the last few years as financial institutions have competed to launch products designed to invest in socially responsible or ethical companies.

  • The rate attitude

    15 May 2008

    Sales of enhanced annuities passed 1bn for the first time last year but they still account for only 10 per cent of annuities sold. Consultant Watson Wyatt suggests that this is a fraction of the potential market and that up to 40 per cent of annuitants could be entitled to an enhanced annuity.

  • Tim Eadon quits PFS

    19 May 2008

    Personal Finance Society chief executive Tim Eadon has resigned from his post in order to pursue “other interests in the financial services sector”.

  • TMB launches online tracking system for packagers

    19 May 2008

    From today, all packagers and brokers will be able to access their clients' offer documents online, through a new system offered by TMB.

  • Tracker funds end long run of outflows

    15 May 2008

    Fund business saw a massive fall in the first quarter of this year compared with the previous year.

  • Triple crowns for Money Marketing

    15 May 2008

    Money Marketing won a hat-trick of awards at the prestigious Headline Money awards. Chris Salih won trade investment reporter of the year, Tanya Powley won trade mortgage reporter of the year and Paul McMillan is trade journalist of the year.

  • Variations on a theme

    15 May 2008

    "The overall retirement income market is going to grow significantly, not least because there are more defined-contribution schemes as people reach maturity," says Burrows.

  • Vertex and HSBC launch new IT system for first direct

    19 May 2008

    Vertex Financial Services and HSBC Life have launched a new life insurance straight-through-processing system for first direct.

  • 'Whistleblow on bad advice'

    15 May 2008

    Personal Finance Society chief executive Tim Eadon says advisers should whistleblow on firms that are not acting in a professional manner.

  • Why did we depolarise in the first place?

    15 May 2008

    The retail distribution review interim report is polarisation reinstated.

  • World economy has been like a pyramid scheme

    15 May 2008

    A former economic adviser to Tony Blair has suggested that the world economy has been functioning as a pyramid scam in the style of 1920s' crook Charles Ponzi.

  • 'You don't need to be whole of market to be professional'

    15 May 2008

    Intrinsic chief executive Kevin Ronaldson says it is nonsense to suggest that people can only give good professional advice if they offer products from the whole of the market.

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