26 July 2006
Open letter to Treasury Economic Secretary Ed Balls
The 32,000 Maxwell pensioners received their pensions but there are perhaps 100,000 being left without. Many of them have lost their state pension too, ending up worse than if they had never put a penny into their company scheme at all
Lender profile: Guy Anker looks at how Edeus is aiming to be number one by putting brokers at the heart of its operation, creating a unique technology package and vowing to slash the time it takes from loan application to offer
The Allianz Bric stars fund is backed by an experienced team and in-house research system which has given it a competitive edge in an unproven market
Too many equity-release advisers are failing to factor in social security benefits
Yes: 25% No: 75%
Recently I saw a new client who was dissatisfied with her existing discretionary fund managers and felt that her portfolio needed to be refreshed. She left us with details of the portfolio, so we were able to analyse what she had.
Ex-ABI chief will work part-time and says claim firms and advisers that dodge regulation will be prosecuted
Society drops charges for borrowers switching to repayment mortgages
With people having to face financial realities at an increasingly younger age, it is vital for the industry to help them graduate with honours from the school of life, says ifs head of faculty financial regulation
Controversial consumer champion Mick McAteer is leaving Which? after 13 years of battling the financial services industry to concentrate on doing charity work on financial exclusion.
Client information: Nicola York reports on the battle between brokers and lenders over releasing clients' data
The continuing saga of calculating transfer values for DB schemes
Innovation is needed to keep the protection industry afloat
The practitioner panel and the FSA are rowing about the quality of the regulator's mystery-shopping exercises.
Matt Goodburn says fund firms are sticking with Eastern Europe and particularly Russia as they believe in the fundamentals despite recent downturns
The soft launch of Edeus included some typically hyperbolic features. I nonetheless believe that its arrival will in years to come be recalled as an industry-impacting event. That prediction might appear sycophantic but backing Edeus to succeed is like backing Tiger Woods to outscore Terry Wogan, Bruce Forsyth and Ronnie Corbett in a Sunday morning four-ball.
Mystery surrounds the identity of four mortgage networks that have voluntarily agreed not to recruit further appointed representatives following an FSA investigation.
The FSA has appointed Rosemary Hilary as director of the business review and audit division.
Research by the FSA in the field of lifetime mortgages has found significant weaknesses on fact-finding carried out by advisers before coming up with a recommendation.Firms must have close regard for knowing and understanding all elements of their clients' financial circumstances.
I would like to turn my attention this week to the importance of applying some basic mathematics to the subject of pension planning, as prompted by some recent questions from a client. Having been presented with a statutory money-purchase illustration from his pension provider, he asked my guidance on the effect of any of the assumptions used in the report proving incorrect.
Pensions tax simplification has swamped the industry with a 400 per cent increase in technical guidance pages and nearly double the number of pages of legislation that existed pre A-day.
Integrated technology seems to be the answer to the regulator's treating customers fairly demands
Attempts to put positive spin on last week's U-turn have not impressed those firms which have spent 225m preparing for Hips, says Guy Anker
Watchdog once told it should 'stick to testing toasters' but it has built a powerful reputation
Mortgages plc, the UK lender and subsidiary of Merrill Lynch, has today entered the prime buy to let market by launching a range of products which includes prime buy to let and 'house to let' options.
The latest salvo of damning mystery-shopping revelations to hit the financial advice sector has prompted a fierce backlash from Aifa director general Chris Cummings.
'Ambitious plans to increase retail business share from 3 to 5 per cent of the market by 2009'
Live and kicking
Promotions in the general insurance and sub-prime mortgage sectors are still not up to scratch and need to be improved, according to an FSA report.
As financial advisers or product providers, we have a moral obligation to persuade the public that efficient financial planning means that money works harder and goes further.
Continuing to look at the amendments to this year's Finance Bill
Russia's performance is influenced by its oil companies and the market will bounce back after some volatility
After enacting the Civil Partnership Act last year, the Government could draw up a legal framework for common-law partners who see their relationship break down. Jeremy Abraham, who heads the family and private client department at law firm Russell Jones & Walker, examines proposals put forward in a Law Commission report
Our panel consider the prospects for new lender Edeus plus the Ship strategy for qualified advice only on equity release
The Department of Trade and Industry will shortly abolish audit requirements for regulated small firms and ARs.
Borrowing: Heritable Bank marketing manager Alison Walley says many lenders are rejecting the old style of income multiples in favour of an affordability calculator which can enhance a borrower's credit facilities and at the same time cut costs for lenders as the underwriting process can be automated
The maths of ASP are not rocket science but are beyond the Government
Simon Conn is fast making a name for himself as the guru on overseas mortgages. Conn, who has been involved in financial services since 1980, set up Conti Financial Services in 1994 when the company consisted of himself and a small office in Hove.
One of the first lessons all journalists learn at the start of their careers is that any official report can be interpreted in diametrically opposite ways, depending on the person reading it.
Hot on the heels of the announcement that Jupiter has poached Schroders opportunity fund manager Ben Whitmore, the fund house has achieved a second notable scalp.
The controversy over home information packs will just not go away and the news that property website Rightmove has dumped its Hips proposition has added ammunition to those that believe Hips will not happen at all.
Select committee members can expect less of an ear-bashing in future when examining financial services issues after this week's announcement that Mick McAteer is standing down as principal policy adviser at Which?
With the Compensation Bill finally receiving royal assent claims chasers will have to make the most of their last few months of comparative freedom.
Select committee members can expect less of anear-bashing in future when examining financial services issues after this week's announcement that Mick McAteer is standing down as principal policy adviser at Which?
Nicola York assesses the protection industry's appetite for severity-based payouts on critical-illness products and asks whether this new model, introduced in the UK by Virgin and Prudential, will become as popular as in South Africa