19 March 2008
The Mortgage WorksThree-Year Self-Cert Fixed Rate
I’m getting used to putting in calls to Windsor Life’s PR team at the moment due to the volume of complaints Money Marketing is receiving from disgruntled advisers.
I am clearly not the only person in the UK wondering exactly what the difference is between generic financial advice and money guidance, the former having been dropped in favour of the latter by Otto Thoresen.
Alliance & LeicesterFive Year Fixed Rate
Alliance & LeicesterBuy to Let Two Year Fixed Rate
Barclays Capital has established the ecological trio deposit account, a guaranteed equity bond aimed at investors with offshore life bonds and UK wrap accounts.
It has been a nightmare few days for investors again as markets have been left reeling by the collapse and subsequent emergency sale of US investment bank Bear Stearns.
Former Bedlam Asset Management fund managers Julian Pendock and Matt Jones have brought out the first fund under their new venture, Senhouse Capital.
Blue Sky Asset ManagementAsset Allocation Accelerated Growth Plan
Insurance bonds are still the right investment for certain clients and advisers have a vital role to play advising on the best course of action following this year's Budget announcement.
Well, for those of you who thought Gordon Brown's last Budget delivery was boring, the latest Chancellor took us to subterranean levels.
BuildLoanSkipton Three Year Base Rate Tracker
BuildLoanTMB Lifetime Tracker
There seems to be a swelling tide of resentment among some professionals in the financial services industry, including IFAs, about the way in which the Financial Ombudsman Service deals with disputes between customers and firms.
Cheshire Building Society2-Year Discoun
Has the Treasury finally removed its fingers from all the pies on the Government's table with last week's Budget?Alistair Darling's speech was less chief executive, UK plc, more bank manager. The Chancellor had little room for manoeuvre bound by the deteriorating economic situation and public finances Northern Rock and all.
FSA managing director of the UK retail business unit Clive Briault is to leave the regulator by mutual agreement.
With the copylines shown above all on display in current Isa ads, no one could claim, as I sometimes have in the past, that fund managers are failing to acknowledge current market conditions. But equally, no one could claim that this forest of caution makes Isa investing look like a particularly attractive option.
The mortgage industry has hit out at the Government for not taking urgent action to address the liquidity crisis in last week's Budget.
Structured product provider Dawnay Day Quantum has introduced protected commodities dynamo, a capital-protected bond linked to a basket of eight commodities.
Any industry should learn from its mistakes but sometimes it takes bold action in order to realise those mistakes.
Breeding Capital II and III is an enterprise investment scheme that aims to raise up to £4m to invest thoroughbred horses for horseracing and in related assets such as stallion shares.
The Power Amp Music EIS fund is an enterprise investment scheme fund aiming to raise £10m to develop, produce and promote a portfolio of 20-30 music artists.
When asked to write an article on emerging markets, I was in a quandary. Did the commissioner of the article really want a commentary on the risks and rewards of investing in higher risk markets? If so, I am not sure I should be concentrating on emerging markets.
Guinness Asset Management has introduced an alternative energy fund to provide growth by investing globally in companies involved in the alternative energy and energy technology sectors.
The title of the four-time Oscar winner No Country for Old Men is sure to resonate with advisers of a certain age facing the current turbulence in the mortgage market.
The outlook for fund management firm F&C has improved in the past couple of weeks with the publication of two positive sets of results.
Scottish Provident has been referred to the FSA and the ABI by Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury Angela Eagle after its treatment of a cancer victim was highlighted in Parliament.
Following the publication of the Thoresen report, will properly implemented generic financial advice or money guidance increase the take-up for protection products?
Before last week's Budget, the Chancellor announced proposals to introduce a gold standard or kitemark that would be given to good quality mortgage securitisation.
Henderson's multi-manager team has added Neptune European opportunities to all three of its independent portfolio funds of funds.
The end of the protection price war has been predicted repeatedly but it seems to be only the smaller companies that are trying to lead the move away from price by focusing on product innovation.
Invesco PerpetualEuropean Equity Income Fund
Invesco PerpetualEuropean Opportunities Fund
It seems that my wee firm finds itself disapproved of at the ABI. This seems to happen whenever we urge providers to be open and honest and so regain the moral high ground that an insurer should always seek to hold.
Last week, I made reference to the Cofunds platform conference on Investing in Retirement. With the rise in commodity prices and the Budget, I omitted some of the more interesting aspects. I know I am biased, being chairman, but it was not the usual post-retirement patter.
London & CapitalPortfolio Management Service
M&G has brought out two European funds - one investing in special situations and the other investing in undervalued stocks.
A couple of weeks ago,multi-managers were talking of seeing value ininvestment-grade fundsagain after a tough time forcorporate bonds – with theaverage corporate bond funddown 3.8 per cent over the 12 months to March 3.
Blue Sky Asset Management and Meteor Asset Management have introduced capital-protected bonds that are based on a share basket comprising five major UK banks.
Meteor Asset Management has brought out a capital-protected bond that offers investors two risk and reward options in relation to commodities exposure.
There is a cold regulatory wind blowing through financial services from Canary Wharf.
Lawrence House Fund Managers and Pharon IFA managing director Mike Sargeant is celebrating 21 years with the business this year.
Investors will be relishing the long Easter weekend after an extraordinary week that revealed just how jittery the markets really are in the present climate.
Nothing excites a fund manager more than numbers that do not seem to add up - it often flags up investment opportunities.
I am 30, earn £35,000 a year and want to start paying into a pension. What would you recommend? I am renting and have no meaningful savings.
PrudentialIncome Drawdown With Sipp Option
The proposals to reform and simplify the capital gains tax regime generated an enormous amount of comment. The changes will affect individuals, trustees and personal representatives when disposals are made on or after April 6 this year.
Invesco PerpetualEmerging European Fund
Shore CapitalPuma Venture Capital Trust V and VI
The Skipton Building Society Group has acquired an 86 per cent shareholding in Torquil Clark in a bid to strengthen its financial advice offering.
Much of the debate around pensions has focused on the savings side - how much should individuals save for retirement and where and how should they save it?
Swip's multi-manager team says it has achieved good relative returns for its multi-manager diversity and multi-manager select boutiques fund despite difficult market conditions.
Multi-asset specialist Tactica has made its debut into the UK retail market with a range of three risk-graded Oeics, which invest directly in a range of asset classes and through investment funds.
Perhaps it seems clever to knock the competition but I fail to understand the logic behind TV ads from the UK's biggest banks and building societies which criticise certain forms of financial distribution and advice.
I may have mentioned this before but in my spare time I am a vintage scooter fanatic. So are quite a few readers of this column. Indeed, one of my best mates in scootering is the former principal of a large IFA firm that flourished in the late 1980s before expiring some time around the formation of the old Personal Investment Authority.
A gold and precious metal fund called the Craton Capital Precious Metal fund launched in November 2003 has proved popular among European investors, but is as yet little known in the UK.
When I am on holiday, I never quite switch off and so it was I found myself pondering the Malaysian state and private pension system.
Exchange traded funds have been one of the most notable investment success stories of recent years, with the European market growing by 30 per cent to reach euro 90bn last year.
Discussing possible topics for this article, one of my colleagues suggested writing about deeds of variation, especially in light of the introduction of the transferable nil-rate band.
Who is to blame when someone borrows too much money - broker, lender or borrower? Money Marketing gets the feeling it is going to be the subject of great debate following comments from the ombudsman Tony Boorman.
Multi-manager investment trust Witan says the three new managers it appointed last year following a restructuring of the trust have each outperformed their benchmarks.