23 March 2005
Mortgage lenders are an ungrateful lot. Having campaigned hard and relentlessly for an increase in the starting point for stamp duty and seen it doubled by Chancellor Gordon Brown in the Budget, they are now griping that it is not enough.
The ABI is lobbying the Government over plans announced in the Budget to tax orphan assets used by life offices to help support life offices' with-profits funds.
UK investors and IFAs who placed over 26m in an offshore Shepherds traded life fund face uncertainty as the beleaguered US company it invested through faces collapse.
Aifa is warning that product providers and IFAs may still need a higher initial charge to make it worth their while selling the Sandler stakeholder pension.
Axa's director of national sales says female advisers have an advantage over their male counterparts in that they are 'genetically nosy' and can get to the core of what a client wants and she is using this asset to forge relationships with the best IFAs in the industry.
The Inland Revenue will apply inheritance tax to alternative secured pension assets upon death to avoid the schemes being used for avoidance.
Informed Choice managing director Nick Bamford is accusing Barclays Financial Planning of confusing its customers by implying that its multi-tie proposition is whole of market.
Bankhall is running a series of roadshows for its Investment Strategies Limited members to ease them through the procedure of becoming directly authorised.
Scottish Life head of pensions strategy Steve Bee says A-Day should be postponed for the third time because the industry is not ready
Mortgage lenders are raising exit fees in an indiscriminate fashion and treating customers unfairly according to an Essex broker.
Brown said the UK's household savings ratio was four times higher than in the US and Canada but don't be fooled. In all three countries, this is dangerously low and cannot possibly be enough to sustain people through retirement.
There was precious little of substance to encourage people to save more for the long term. Over the coming weeks, politicians of all parties must be questioned about how they intend to encourage the public to save.
Amanda Newman looks at how Ucits III has led to the creation of directional bond funds, with some saying they are the future for bond funds and others claiming there is not enough demand for products of this type.
Chelsea Building SocietyThree YEar Fixed Rate Buy-To-Let
Close Property InvestmentRomulus High Income Fund
Now that the dust has settled on the regulation of mortgages and general ins-urance, an interesting by-product has arisen where possibly, for the first time, big distribution groups in the investment arena find themselves as equally big distributors in the mortgage and general insurance marketplace.
Britannic Asset Management's UK property fund will aim for income and growth by investing up to 100 per cent directly in UK commercial property.
Only 10 per cent of pensioners believe that the state benefits system does not punish them for saving for their retirement, according to Department of Work and Pensions research.
I have just come off the telephone answering a call from a long suffering client unfortunate enough to have a group personal pension policy with Norwich Union.
Countrywide is looking to set up a residential property fund when the Reit regulations come into force next year.
Abbey believes the management techniques of directional bond fund managers such as UBS will benefit multi-managers as long as risk profiles are not jeopardised.
The onus is on taxpayers to ensure they comply with the new pre-owned assets tax regulations, says Canada Life technical support manager Jeremy Pearson.
Dover Street Capital, a specialist venture capital and investment advisory firm based in London, has raised over £60m in the past three years, mainly through film financing. It has now brought out a venture capital trust, which will have a fixed life of six years.
Dover Street Capital, a specialist venture capital and investment advisory firm based in London, has raised over 60m in the past three years, mainly through film financing. It has now brought out a venture capital trust, which will have a fixed life of six years.
Last week, I looked at the Inland Revenue onslaught on the use of capital redemption bonds which sees corporate-held CRBs taken outside the chargeable-event rules. What will this move mean in practice?
When guaranteed critical-illness cover rates started to rise a couple of years ago, some providers predicted that the industry would have to develop a completely new product model if this type of cover was to survive.
The Exchange managing director David Child predicts about 10 per cent of its clients will be multi-tied by June with many others waiting to see how depolarisation works out before deciding whether to switch.
F&C grew its operating profit by 16.4 per cent in 2004 despite a third consecutive year of net outflows that have seen the fund company lose 19bn of assets.
F&C has lost management of the 227m F&C Pacific investment trust to Witan, which will adopt a multi-manager approach.
The report of the Employer Taskforce on Pensions published in December 2004 resulted in positive comment from the usual pension organisations and bodies representing employers, such as the CBI and British Chamber of Commerce.
The moratorium on the use of genetic testing in the setting of insurance premiums has been extended from 2006 to 2011.
The mortgage market remained flat in February says the Council of Mortgage Lenders, but the proportion of lending for house purchases is down.
Foresters Friendly Society chief executive Mark Rothery has been appointed president of the Association of Friendly Societies.
Friends Provident is offering a new internet-based investment portfolio planning tool for IFAs aimed at providing a flexible service.
Friends Provident has been picked by National Australian Bank group for its multi-tie agreement, selling its products through subsidiaries Clydesdale Bank Insurance Brokers and Yorkshire Bank Financial Services.
Friends Provident's pension sales have fallen amid broker concerns over the merger of F&C and Isis.
Managers of authorised schemes operating under the FSA's collective investment scheme sourcebook will no longer have to publish unit prices in a national newspaper from April.
The FSA is to issue guidance to advisers on VCTs amid concerns that the products could be sold to investors who are unaware of the risks.
Gartmore's policy of excluding internal funds from its multi-manager portfolios would be relaxed if a Gartmore fund were head and shoulders above its peers says the firm.
In a vote-winning gesture, Chancellor Gordon Brown announced the rise in the stamp duty threshold from 60,000 to 120,000 in last week's Budget.
One of the supposed watchwords in financial services is transparency.
Your chance to win fantastic sporting trips every month in a superb promotion being run by First Active.
Let me expand on a recent letter to Money Marketing concerning an online test application completed for an end-owment review. Apparently, no matter what responses the adviser gave, the test always suggested that he may have been missold.
Keydata says it hopes to offer IFAs the opportunity to diversify client portfolios with more innovative products.
As the Isa season draws to a close with the end of the tax year, thoughts are turning to the big themes for IFAs in the coming months.
New networks are starting to make a big impression with many financial intermediaries.
Small caps are not trading at the same discount to bigger companies that they have been for the past two years but they are still good value.
Jupiter corporate bond fund manager John Hamilton thinks the high-yield bond market is peaking.
KeydataFTSE Growthbuilder Plan 3
Poor technical support from product providers is a major problem for nearly half of all advisers, according to a survey by Assureweb.
As the April 6 deadline approaches for the first year of 40 per cent of tax relief for VCTs, Louis Nisbet, fund manager and managing partner of specialist investment manager Sitka explains why there is a need for education on VCTs.
At the beginning of this year, I started a series of articles reviewing the progress of certain key pension issues and highlighting opportunities for pension advisers to assist corporate and personal clients.
Small and medium-sized life insurance companies will be unable to cope with the avalanche of regulation and some could be wiped out, according to a report by consultants Deloitte.
Liontrust director Anthony Cross believes the resources bubble could be about to burst, with valuations in the small companies sector too high.
Slow industry take-up of multi-ties is not just a question of providers and advisers taking a wait-and-see approach but reflects deep-rooted problems with this distribution model.
Money Portal group operations director Richard Pearson is setting himself the target of more than doubling the advisory side of the business in 12 months.
Credit Suisse Asset Management's acquisition of Artemis' fund of funds business has attracted more press coverage than we ever imagined.
Product providers will be able to continue to offer with-profits within stakeholder pensions after amendments to DWP regulations accepted the need for MVRs to be calculated outside the charge cap.
NatWestBuy-To-Let Remortgage Deal
Octopus Asset Management Phoenix VCT - C Shares
Paragon Mortgages and James Hay are creating a joint venture to provide a range of Sipp products to buy-to-let investors.
Individuals tend to underestimate their longevity by five years or more, believing their pension will be payable for a shorter period than it really will, seriously affecting their provisions for retirement, says new research.
Invesco Perpetual's decision to consult on reverting to its old brand reflects a wider schizophrenia in the industry, says a brand guru.
Open letter to Mark Ommanney,Personal Finance Society.
The Personal Finance Society is asking its members whether to split the organisation into two faculties one covering personal and the other corporate financial planning.
The board of Securities Trust of Scotland says it will respond in detail this week to Perpetual income & growth investment trust's formal takeover offer.
PlatformSelf-Certification Five Year Base Rate Tracker
Positive Solutions is setting up Positive Mortgages to offer support services to mortgage brokers.
Positive Solutions is targeting Investment Strategies Limited members with a series of seminars following the recent move by Bankhall to close down the ISL network.
Premier Asset Management is offering a Sipp which is free of charge to those who invest a minimum of 250,000 into any of its funds or managed investment services.
The launch of HSBC's new deposit account is the latest of some recent headline-grabbing regular savings accounts following on the heels of Halifax & Abbey.
We decided to remain truly independent and offer a choice to our customers to pay us for our genuine advice through commission or fees.
A joint industry-government strategy for financial services in Scotland has been launched aimed at strengthening the industry's future in the region.
Campbell Dallas Financial Services has signed up Scottish rugby player Ross Bottomley to head its corporate and employee benefits section.
Scottish EquitableProtected Growth Fund
Selestia is hoping to attract more IFAs by setting up an online distribution channel with phone support.
IFAs face formidable challenges but they can continue to thrive.
Pension investors in an offshore traded life fund run by Shepherds are being forced to withdraw their funds after it was delisted.
A row has broken out between Skandia and Selestia over the pricing of Skandia's mirror funds.
Skandia has cut its Multibond allocation rates by up to four percentage points and is launching an onshore discounted gift trust in a revamp of its bond range.
Skandia Investment Managements asset allocator fund range comprises seven multi-manager Oeics which enable IFAs to build a bespoke mix of asset classes across different geographical sectors.
Thousands of small businesses and regular savers will be liable for pre-owned assets tax after April 6, despite life offices lobbying the Inland Revenue.
Events surrounding the price of black gold are far more exciting than Brown's political Budget, says Brian Tora.
As we grow older, most of us are less willing to take risks. That is certainly true as we approach retirement when we begin to take stock of how much income we will have in retirement and how best to protect it.
Standard Life has appointed Fidelity FundsNetwork as the fund supermarket platform for its Sipp.
A Leicester adviser is complaining to Standard Life that its with-profits communications to customers are confusing and put crucial information on severe penalties in cryptic language.
Most financial advisers are probably fed up reading about how the new pension tax regime will affect people above the lifetime allowance because the vast majority of their clients will not come anywhere near to 1.5m of pension value over their working lifetime.
The first candidates in the Securities and Investment Institute's pilot for a new financial services exam achieved an 85 per cent pass rate to gain the Introduction to Investment qualification.
More than twice as many public sector workers have access to final-salary pension schemes than people in the private sector, according to research from the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development.
Is this year's Budget good for your clients?
The AITC's Geoff Procter looks back and forward after nearly 40 years in financial services.
Independent financial advice rules, it always has and it always willIt was interesting to read Wai Man Cheung's arguments recently in Money Marketing for giving up his IFA status in order to become a partner at St James's Place Partnership.
Simplified price-capped products have failed in the European countries where they have been introduced, according to a study by Charles River Associates for the European Commission.
Our client approached us, having been asked by her mother's financial adviser to act as a trustee for a gift & loan inheritance tax scheme. She asked what responsibilities she would be taking on and whether she could agree and leave everything to her mother's adviser.
Over half of private investors believe the FTSE will rise by up to 10 per cent over the coming months, according to research by TD Waterhouse.
The Parliamentary Ombudsman has written to members of occupational pension schemes in wind-up pledging to finish the investigation into whether the Government contributed to the downfall by July.
The Government is aware of 133,000 people over the age of 53 who are losing out because they have contracted out of the second state pension, according to the Liberal Democrats.
West Bromwich Building Society has bought Mortgage Force for an undisclosed sum.
Standard Life marketing technical manager John Lawson warns that advisers are in for a rollercoaster ride trying to explain the implications of the new pension tax rules to business clients as the Revenue moves in to take more control of employer contributions
If I follow the logic of your leading article (Money Marketing, March 17) and the views of the Financial Services Consumer Council, the best investment I can make is to try and get a financial adviser to sell me a venture capital trust.