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4 June 2008

Money Marketing

  • Shareholders urged to reject B&B plan

    5 June 2008

    Investment bank Collins Stewart is calling on Bradford & Bingley shareholders in vote against the repriced rights issue. The UK Shareholders' Association has written to the FSA asking it to investigate the firm.

  • US fund firm looks to buy Artemis

    5 June 2008

    US fund management giant Federated Investors has emerged as one of the frontrunners in the 550m auction of Artemis. It is believed a deal will be announced within weeks.

  • 2009 Could see turning point for oil prices

    5 June 2008

    Lehman Brothers predicts that oil prices will continue to rise until the bubble bursts in 2009.

  • A bridge too far?

    5 June 2008

    One of the common objections levelled against guaranteed retirement income products is that they are overpriced. But overpriced compared with what? Annuities? Or simply over-priced for what they offer?

  • A hunch on the crunch

    5 June 2008

    The protection market has been caught in the crunch, according to the latest figures from the Association of British Insurers showing a fall of 2.1 per cent in regular-premium accumulation and protection new business for the first quarter compared with last year.

  • A shaw thing

    5 June 2008

    Annie Shaw is a freelance financial journalistTo the Chelsea Flower Show as a guest of HBOS, where the flowers were fab and I met Jamie Oliver - no, not that one. The one enjoying Halifax's hospitality is the author of sundry books about death and sex (separate titles) and also writes about entrepreneurs and other financial things for the Daily Telegraph.

  • A shift of strategy

    5 June 2008

    There is nothing under this particularly regulatory sun that says a mortgage network should not expand to the life, pension and investment side of the fence.

  • Aberdeen property head quits after Goodwin deal

    5 June 2008

    Aberdeen head of property asset management in the UK Glenn Newson has left the firm after just over a year.

  • ABI at odds with life offices over cover changes

    5 June 2008

    The Association of British Insurers argued strongly against the Law Commission's plans to update insurance contract law despite 35 of the 39 insurers and reinsurers who responded supporting the reforms.

  • Advisers to see 2.5% rise in triple bill

    5 June 2008

    The FSA says fee rates for 2008/09 will remain at lar-gely the same level as fees consulted on in February, with three fee blocks seeing a reduction.

  • Aegon aims for 35% boost in two years

    5 June 2008

    Aegon plans to increase its value of UK new business by 35 per cent to £213m by 2010 from the present level of £157m.

  • AFB board nominations open today

    6 June 2008

    Nominations have opened for the election of three positions to the board of the Association of Finance Brokers.

  • Aifa reforms group to fight big firms set on wrecking RDR plans

    5 June 2008

    Aifa says some big financial institutions are putting themselves before their customers as they try and reverse the interim proposals of the retail distribution review.

  • Alexander Forbes hits out at rise in PPF levy

    5 June 2008

    Alexander Forbes has slammed changes to the Pension Protection Fund levy which it warns will hit the industry hard.

  • Algebra provides solution for Henderson

    5 June 2008

    Henderson's multi-manager team has invested in the Middle East and North Africa through Algebra Capital's alpha Mena fund.

  • Alpha bets

    5 June 2008

    One of the funds I invest in has been renamed an alpha fund. Can you explain what this means?

  • Altmann challenges Turner on pensions

    5 June 2008

    Former Downing Street pension adviser Dr Ros Altmann is calling on Lord Adair Turner to stand up to the Government on personal accounts in his new role as FSA chairman.

  • APC Underwriting launches insurance network

    9 June 2008

    APC Underwriting has launched APC Alliance, a network that enables mortgage brokers and IFAs to place insurance for commercial clients.

  • Auto pilot

    5 June 2008

    If the EU had not made this exception for the UK, many employers would have closed down contract-based schemes such as group personal pensions, estimated by Mercers to be about two-thirds of employer-offered pension schemes, and moved to a personal account trust-based structure, which would undoubtedly have made people worse off in retirement with the proposed lower contribution rate.

  • Axa Sun Life chief fears advice could suffer in RDR split

    5 June 2008

    Axa Sun Life chief executive Paul Evans has attacked FSA plans to create a clear differentiation between advice and sales, warning it could shrink the advice sector.

  • B&B at boiling point?

    6 June 2008

    The statement by Bradford & Bingley this week that arrears in its more recently acquired mortgages from GMAC have been higher than anticipated raises some interesting questions.

  • B&B hit by GMAC arrears

    5 June 2008

    Bradford & Bingley says arrears in its recently acquired mortgages from GMAC-RFC have been higher than expected.

  • B&W cuts SVR LTV to 90%

    9 June 2008

    Bristol & West has reduced the maximum loan to value of its standard variable rate to 90 per cent across all business channels.

  • Baillie changes Pacific and Europe managers

    5 June 2008

    Baillie Gifford has had a reshuffle on its European and Asia desks.

  • Bank of England holds base rate at 5%

    5 June 2008

    The Bank of England's Monetary Policy Committee has decided to maintain rates at 5 per cent this month.

  • Bank of England to introduce new liquidity facility for all seasons

    10 June 2008

    Bank of England governor Mervyn King has announced it will be putting in place a liquidity facility that works in all seasons, not just under stressed conditions.

  • Barings bolsters fixed income and currency team

    10 June 2008

    Barings Asset Management has appointed Harjeet Heer as the group’s global head of aggregate business.

  • BBA announced Libor reforms

    10 June 2008

    The British Bankers’ Association is set to strengthen the London Interbank Offered Rate with a package of reforms announced today.

  • Belfast broker banned for mortgage fraud

    9 June 2008

    The FSA has banned Belfast mortgage broker Gerard McStravick, trading as Fast Track Mortgage and Finance Consultants, for knowingly submitting false mortgage applications to lenders.

  • Bidders could get more time on RBS insurance

    5 June 2008

    Royal Bank of Scotland is thought to have extended the deadline for bids to buy its insurance business into June at the request of suitors.

  • Big inflows for societies as net lending plummets

    5 June 2008

    Net mortgage lending dived by 40 per cent in April to 666m from 1.1bn in the same month last year, according to figures from the Building Societies Association.

  • Big rise from the big six

    5 June 2008

    Complaints to the Financial Ombudsman Service about banks have rocketed in the past year while advisers have seen a major drop-off in cases.

  • Broker offers 50% fee share for equity release referrals

    5 June 2008

    Equity-release broker Home & Capital Advisers has set up a referral service that pays introducers 50 per cent of the procuration fee for every case.

  • Broker Talkback

    5 June 2008

    Should the FSA publish complaints' information about poorly performing banks and financial companies?

  • Brought to account

    5 June 2008

  • Brown replaces Crawshaw at CML

    5 June 2008

    Bank of Ireland personal lending managing director Richard Brown has replaced Bradford & Bingley chief executive Steven Crawshaw as chairman of the Council of Mortgage Lenders in an acting capacity.

  • Bupa pays 80.8 per cent of critical illness claims

    4 June 2008

    Bupa paid 80.8 per cent of critical illness claims last year.

  • Can the raw run go on?

    5 June 2008

    They say timing is everything. Those canny investors who bought the Aberdeen (now New Star) technology fund in the mid to late 1980s would have seen stellar returns rather than those that simply jumped on the bandwagon in early 2000 just before the bubble burst.

  • Care necessities

    5 June 2008

  • Chartered and standard IFAs score equally in test

    5 June 2008

    Advanced and standard advisers scored identical pass rates in an online test on with-profits.

  • Chelsea and Catholic Building Societies to merge

    9 June 2008

    Chelsea Building Society and the Catholic Building Society have confirmed plans to merge.

  • Cinven buys majority holding in Partnership

    10 June 2008

    Partnership Assurance has been bought out by private equity firm Cinven.

  • Close encounters

    5 June 2008

    Last week, I started to look at the alienation rules in connection with long-term resident non-domiciliaries.

  • Close makes 6.4m profit on Grosvenor

    5 June 2008

    Close Ventures has made a 6.4m profit after disposing of its 49 per cent stake in occupational health service provider Grosvenor Health Group.

  • CML calls for Govt view on safety net for borrowers

    4 June 2008

    The Council of Mortgage Lenders has written to the Chancellor calling for a “clear statement” of its views on the potential reform of the safety net for borrowers.

  • Columbus buys Orchard Lane

    5 June 2008

    Wealth manager HFM Columbus has acquired independent financial adviser firm Orchard Lane.

  • Cracking the Crunch, By Mark Chilton, managing director of Homeowners Mortgages

    9 June 2008

    Stephen Knight is certainly right when he suggest that what we are living with is not a credit crunch as much as a liquidity freeze. The real problem is that the real credit crunch is just beginning. And through a combination of lack of Government intervention and a market acting with more emotion than analysis we are on the verge of a self-fulfilling downward spiral.

  • Cracking the Crunch, By Richard Farr, director at the Association of Mortgage Intermediaries

    5 June 2008

    The Association of Mortgage Intermediaries believes the market has lost the power to heal itself. Market participants have insufficient ability to address the underlying fault lines – and running through the sub-strata is a thread of commercial advantage being played out as some institutions seek to remodel the market for their own benefit. What the market cannot solve, public policy must, if consumers are not to be the main losers.

  • Deficits may run another 10 years

    5 June 2008

    Twenty-seven per cent of trustees with defined-benefit pension schemes in deficit believe the schemes will still be in deficit in 10 years time, according to a survey by Aon Consulting.

  • Domestic affairs

    5 June 2008

    The Adviser Fund Index questionnaire for April shows that the panellists believe the UK is going to do relatively better than the US and Japan over the next 12 months.

  • Don't get locked out

    5 June 2008

    Falling house prices mean that would-be equity-release clients could be well advised to make their move sooner rather than later.

  • Dual to the death?

    5 June 2008

    In a competitive market, how far should your business go to gain advantage? Should you pursue opportunities for growth and increased market share, even if it compromises your corporate principles, values and vision? How long can you persist in positioning your business as a good corporate citizen when you are seeking to put your rivals out of business?

  • Dual-pricing won't hit advisers' market share

    5 June 2008

    Datamonitor predicts the intermediary share of the mortgage market will only shrink by 2 per cent this year despite the concerns over dual-pricing.

  • End of PPI cash cow?

    9 June 2008

    Credit providers making a killing from the sale of PPI were dealt a potentially show-stopping blow last week with the announcement that point of sale PPI may be banned.

  • Fair exchange

    5 June 2008

  • Fee deal aiming to boost Scottish FTB mortgage market

    5 June 2008

    The Edinburgh Solicitors Property Centre has linked up with the Bank of Ireland to offer low-cost access to the bank's 1st Start guarantor deal.

  • Fidelity heads Tory donor list

    5 June 2008

    Fidelity heads a host of financial services industry names donating to a resurgent Conservative party.

  • Fidelity picks duo to take on Stavis funds

    5 June 2008

    Fidelity has picked Michael Clark and Matt Siddle to take over the income plus and growth and income funds from John Stavis, who is taking a six-month sabbatical.

  • Five-year fixed deal from Network Data

    5 June 2008

    Network Data is offering an exclusive five-year fixed-rate mortgage deal from Abbey up to 60 per cent loan to value. Maximum loan is 550,000 and there is a 1,499 fee.

  • 'FOS figures prove the worth of IFAs'

    5 June 2008

    Aifa says the Financial Ombudsman Service's annual review is a "clear endorsement" that customers are satisfied with IFAs.

  • Friends could be close to agreeing Pantheon sale

    9 June 2008

    Friends Provident is thought to be nearing an announcement on the sale of Pantheon to a private equity buyer.

  • FSA appoints three new senior advisers

    4 June 2008

    The FSA has appointed Jeremy Bennett, David Smith and Simon Stockwell as senior advisers in the wholesale and institutional business unit, with immediate effect.

  • FSA bans three South London brokers for false mortgage applications

    9 June 2008

    The FSA has banned three South London brokers for submitting false mortgage applications to lenders backed by faked documents.

  • FSA cash website for young people

    5 June 2008

    The FSA has launched a new website, www.whatabout money.info, offering information for young adults as part of its National Strategy for Financial Capability.

  • FSA consults on banning use of surplus to pay compensation

    4 June 2008

    The FSA has published a consultation paper proposing to stop insurance companies from using the inherited estates of with-profits funds to pay compensation for mis-selling.

  • FSA formed contingency plan over B&B

    10 June 2008

    The FSA held talks with the UK’s largest banks to formulate a contingency plan in case the Bradford & Bingley rights issue had fallen through, according to press reports.

  • FSA loses four out of seven applications to appeal on case

    5 June 2008

    The Financial Services and Markets Tribunal has partially rebuffed the FSA over its application to appeal against a tribunal decision concerning solicitor firm Fox Hayes.

  • FSA panel warns RDR could force advisers out and increase fees

    5 June 2008

    The FSA's Smaller Businesses Practitioner Panel has warned that the RDR may force some small firms out of business and as a result could push regulatory fees for remaining firms even higher.

  • FSA plans to ban orphan cash being used to pay for misselling

    5 June 2008

    Advisers have welcomed an FSA proposal to ban insurers from using with-profits inherited estates to pay misselling claims.

  • FSA puts UK landbanking firm into administration

    4 June 2008

    The FSA has asked the High Court to wind up a large UK ‘landbanking’ company for operating as an illegal collective investment scheme.

  • Goldsmith Williams helps brokers with free-fee conveyancing

    4 June 2008

    Law firm Goldsmith Williams is offering a free fee service to give brokers an alternative to lenders’ own free fee legal schemes.

  • He fought Brown and won

    5 June 2008

    Lord Adair Turner has been praised for improving the state pension structure as Pensions Committee chairman but there is a long way to go yet for personal accounts.

  • High price of loan deal

    5 June 2008

    Mortgage commentators have welcomed the completion of HBOS's 500m residential mortgage-backed securitisation recently but many are sceptical on whether it will have any impact on the market.

  • Home Funding chief gives warning on distressed sales

    5 June 2008

    Home Funding chief executive Tony Ward says banks and hedge funds are beginning to look at distressed sales from mortgage lenders.

  • House prices fall 2.4% in May, says Halifax

    5 June 2008

    House prices fell by 2.4 per cent in May, with prices 3.8 per cent lower on an annual basis according to the Halifax house price survey.

  • HSBC group chairman warns banks must go back to basics

    10 June 2008

    HSBC group chairman Stephen Green has told the banking industry it needs to go back to basics and realise the importance of retail deposits.

  • Hughes quits as Burns-Anderson chief executive

    5 June 2008

    Mike Hughes has resigned as Burns-Anderson chief executive less than three months after Money Portal acquired the business.

  • IFA faces string of deception charges

    5 June 2008

    An IFA has been sent for trial at Shrewsbury Crown Court on a series of deception charges.

  • IFA jailed after cheating old people

    5 June 2008

    A North-east IFA has been jailed for four and a half years after he stole more than £360,000 from investors.

  • IFAs 1 Banks 0

    5 June 2008

    The latest ombudsman report allows IFAs a wry smile as complaints against IFAs have plummeted while complaints against banks have rocketed.

  • IFAs are urged to build their own platforms

    5 June 2008

    A wealth manager forecasts that IFAs will increasingly look to develop their own platforms rather than adopting ready-made solutions.

  • IFAs paying an unfairly high price

    5 June 2008

    It comes as little surprise to read that, now the FSA-orchestrated hindsight review of mortgage-related endowments is finally fading into history, we are seeing a dramatic increase in the proportion of complaints against banks and other big financial services organisations.

  • IFAs see growing market for third-way products

    5 June 2008

    Nearly two out of five IFAs say they will advise clients to use guaranteed third-way products as an alternative to traditional annuities in the next year, says MetLife Europe.

  • Increase Omo demand and supply will follow

    5 June 2008

    The question of the open market option and pension investors' failure to use it has received widespread publicity in recent weeks.

  • Indian summer

    5 June 2008

    After a fall of around 23 per cent in the first three months of this year, the Indian stockmarket now looks to be highly attractive. Over the past 10 years, the Indian economy has grown at an average annual rate of more than 7 per cent and is forecast to grow by 8.7 per cent in 2008/09.

  • Influential voices

    5 June 2008

    Economic turbulence is nipping at the heels of UK plc like a determined Jack Russell. Coming as it does during a period of regulatory upheaval, members may ask what is being done to ensure that the voice of independent advice is heard above the hullabaloo.

  • Ingenious keeps a narrow focus

    5 June 2008

    Ingenious Asset Management says it decided against a fund of funds structure for its UK equity fund because it wanted to create a fund that was precision engineered.

  • Insurers and wet signatures

    5 June 2008

    Just last month I read that someone has launched a campaign for wet signatures for electronically submitted protection business.

  • Invesco Perpetual fund manager Ed Burke to take early retirement

    10 June 2008

  • Investment companies reveal growth tips for economic downturn

    10 June 2008

    Investment company managers believe the energy, online retail, tobacco and infrastructure sectors are best positioned to weather an economic slowdown, according to an AIC report.

  • Is it only me...?

    5 June 2008

    My local paper has a regular column entitled Is it only me...? and each time I read it, I dwell on the financial services industry.

  • Just Retirement appoints Patrick Gale as COO

    9 June 2008

    Just Retirement has appointed former Sesame chief executive Patrick Gale to the role of chief operating officer.

  • Keenan quits Prestbury to set up bridging firm

    5 June 2008

    Prestbury co-founder and chief operating officer Stephen Keenan has resigned as director to launch a bridging lender.

  • Kensington to diversify with Investec range

    5 June 2008

    Kensington is to offer parent company Investec's structured retail products through its distribution channel as it looks to widen its business.

  • Keydata rolls out new structured products plans

    6 June 2008

    Keydata Investment Services is launching a new range of structured product plans in a bid to help financial advisers beat the credit crunch.

  • Legg Mason launches emerging markets fund through subsidiary

    9 June 2008

    Legg Mason has launched an emerging markets equity fund for its Dublin-domiciled global funds range.

  • Lifestyle counsel

    5 June 2008

  • Linda Will joins Stroud & Swindon

    10 June 2008

    Linda Will is to join Stroud & Swindon as sales and marketing director.

  • LV= launches enhanced with-profits annuity on The Exchange

    4 June 2008

    LV= has launched its enhanced with profit pension annuity on The Exchange’s Exweb portal.

  • LV= plan aims to shake up MPPI market

    5 June 2008

    ProtectionBy Helen PowLV= has launched a new income protection product which is designed to replace mortgage payment protection insurance.

  • 'Make Omo stand for Offer More Options'

    5 June 2008

    Living Time has launched a campaign to rebrand the annuity open market option to make retirees more aware that they are not just limited to lifetime annuities.

  • Market dries up for £1m-plus mortgages

    5 June 2008

    Mortgages for more than £1m are becoming increasingly scarce as lenders look to curb volumes by restricting lending, says wealth manager HFM Columbus.

  • Media madness

    5 June 2008

    One of the advantages - perhaps it is a disadvantage - of becoming old is that you begin to realise that life has a tendency of repeating itself. Although all of us are, potentially at least, free agents and able to determine how we behave, most people tend to assume the roles that have been prescribed for them, most of the time.

  • Mentor for web business

    5 June 2008

    IFA Life is running a six-month internet marketing mentoring programme to help firms build their presence on the web.

  • Meteor offers protected commodities portfolio

    5 June 2008

    Meteor Asset Management is offering a commodity-linked investment plan with a choice of capital protection.

  • Mform aids loan comparisons

    5 June 2008

    Online mortgage firm mform.co.uk is offering a service allowing borrowers to compare their deal with products from lenders across the whole market.

  • mform.co.uk warns NR customers to shop around

    10 June 2008

    Northern Rock mortgage customers coming off fixed rate contracts remain at risk despite a remortgaging deal with Lloyds TSB and should shop around for the best deal, according to mform.co.uk.

  • Midas reveals seven-strong fund range

    4 June 2008

    Midas Capital Partners has unveiled its seven-strong UK fund range following the acquisition of iimiaMitonOptimal in March.

  • Mirae adds range of Asia Pacific funds

    9 June 2008

    Mirae Asset Global Investments is launching nine emerging markets SICAV funds focused on the Asia Pacific region.

  • Money Marketing Markets: Rights issues coming to a head

    6 June 2008

    The FTSE slipped below the 6,000 barrier this week for the first time in seven weeks with the oil price continuing to drive much of the movement in the market.

  • Mortgage Partnership rebrands to Modus Mortgage Network

    10 June 2008

    The Mortgage Partnership has rebranded to become the Modus Mortgage Network, comprised of 25 appointed representative firms and over 40 registered individuals.

  • Multi-managers buy into Japan bounce

    5 June 2008

    Multi-manager firms are raising their Japanese equity exposure, believing the market is due for a bounce back.

  • Nationwide joins Govt's new shared equity scheme

    10 June 2008

    Nationwide has confirmed it will be taking part in the Government’s new shared equity scheme.

  • NDFA renews dividend offer

    5 June 2008

    NDFA is offering another issue of its regular fixed-income plan which takes advantage of the new tax treatment of non-UK dividends announced in the Budget.

  • New Star in 35 million share plan to lock in staff

    5 June 2008

    New Star has designed a new share-based incentive scheme to keep the core of its senior managers locked into the firm until the end of 2012.

  • Newcastle BS launches investment brand

    9 June 2008

    Newcastle Building Society has made a soft-launch of a range of savings and investment products for intermediaries under the new brand of Newcastle IS.

  • Northern Rock and Lloyds TSB enter mortgage deal

    5 June 2008

    Northern Rock has entered into a three-year commercial agreement with Lloyds TSB Bank to provide mortgages to Northern Rock customers approaching the end of fixed rate periods.

  • Norwich Union to cut up to 1800 jobs

    6 June 2008

    Norwich Union Insurance will make up to 1800 redundancies by the end of 2010 as part of a cost-cutting transformation programme.

  • Nottingham Friendly launches new stocks and shares Isa

    6 June 2008

    The Nottingham Friendly Society is launching a new stocks and shares Isa with ethical, UK and global investment options.

  • OFT raids on RBS and Barclays

    5 June 2008

    The Office of Fair Trading has raided the offices of Royal Bank of Scotland and Barclays in an investigation into alleged anti-competitive conduct over loan pricing.

  • OFT warns 12 businesses over unsolicited mailings

    5 June 2008

    The Office of Fair Trading has issued warnings to 12 businesses over sending unsolicited mailings which advise consumers to cancel existing individual voluntary arrangements.

  • Old Mutual fund manager to retire

    10 June 2008

    Old Mutual extra income fund manager Leonard Klahr is to retire.

  • Only here for the beer

    5 June 2008

    Cambridge University folklore tells of a student who, trawling through ancient legislation, found he could sit his exam while supping a beer. When he turned up to the exam and produced the proof, the astonished adjudicator brought him a pint. The next day, he was summoned to the don's office and fined for sitting an exam without wearing his sword.

  • Open debate

    5 June 2008

  • OPM fixes sights on investment-grade bonds

    5 June 2008

    OPM Fund Management sees greater value in the investment-grade area of the fixed-interest market compared with sub-investment-grade securities over the next two years.

  • Optional extras

    5 June 2008

    Imagine a world where every meal is baked beans, every holiday a fortnight in Bognor Regis, every car a silver hatchback and every retirement income product a lifetime annuity.

  • Pacific Life snaps up Scottish Re

    10 June 2008

    Scottish Re's international arm has been sold to Pacific Life for £36m.

  • Pension switch for LibDems

    5 June 2008

    LibDem Shadow Work and Pensions Secretary Danny Alexander is to leave the role to be chief of staff and chairman of the party's manifesto-writing committee. Cardiff Central MP Jenny Willott takes over.

  • PIMs 2008: RDR transition period will depend on final proposals, says FSA

    5 June 2008

    The FSA says the transition period it gives IFAs to conform to the new definition of advice set out in the Retail Distribution Review will depend on what shape the final regulations take.

  • Pink expands range to bridge income gap

    5 June 2008

    Pink Home Loans has become the latest network to expand its business range as a result of market conditions.

  • Point of sale PPI may be banned, says Competition Commission

    5 June 2008

    The Competition Commission is considering banning the sale of Payment Protection Insurance at the point of sale of a credit product in order to improve competition and lower prices.

  • Polin plans push into global equity and

    5 June 2008

    Resolution Asset Management director Jonathan Polin says he would like to move further into the global equity and alternatives sectors and is not ruling out a joint venture in the future.

  • Powers of attorney

    5 June 2008

    October 1, 2007 was a momentous day. Did you notice? For anyone involved in managing and investing assets for adults who lack, or may lack, capacity to make decisions for themselves because of a mental disorder or mental illness, it will go down in history as the day when a revolution took place.

  • Premier Group recruits extra advisers

    4 June 2008

    Midlands-based IFA The Premier Group plans to recruit 15-20 extra consultants by the end of the year to diversify its business and raise the level of support and services.

  • Prestbury promotes Maggie Cresswell to board

    9 June 2008

    Prestbury has appointed group compliance officer Maggie Cresswell to its board.

  • Profitable Cofunds hits £15bn

    5 June 2008

    Cofunds has passed the £15bn mark in assets under administration on its platform.

  • Property investments bring a loss of 8m

    5 June 2008

    Property-related investments hit Bradford & Bingley as it suffered an 8m loss in the first four months of this year.

  • Property plunge is gathering pace

    5 June 2008

    House prices fell by 2.5 per cent in May, the biggest monthly fall in the history of Nationwide Building Society's house price survey.

  • Protection deal on Axa estate account

    5 June 2008

    Axa is offering an estate planning account with an opt-ional guarantee to protect either the settlor's income or the beneficiary's inheritance from stockmarket volatility.

  • PruProtection boosts Vitality discounts

    4 June 2008

    PruHealth and PruProtect policyholders could get return travel to Paris for as little as £10 in a new partnership with Eurostar.

  • Ratings dropped on three Artemis funds

    5 June 2008

    Bestinvest has dropped its ratings on three Artemis funds, citing issues with fund size and investment process SmartGarp.

  • RBS places rights issue rump at 230p a share

    9 June 2008

    The Royal Bank of Scotland Group says it has placed a rights issue rump at 230p a share for the remaining 299,375m new shares.

  • RBS rights issue gets 95% take up

    9 June 2008

    The Royal Bank of Scotland has received a 95 per cent take up of its £12bn rights issue.

  • Regulator still faces toxic test, says Aifa

    5 June 2008

    Aifa believes the FSA must continue to be on its guard against toxic products although its plans will help to stop spikes of misselling.

  • Re-reg and regulation

    5 June 2008

    The thorny question of platform to platform re-registration, or rather the lack of it, is again attracting widespread commentary from many wrap providers.

  • Resolution AM highlights Japanese inflation prospects

    6 June 2008

    ResolutionAsset Japan fund manager Natasha Chetwynd believes the return of inflation in the country after 15 years could trigger an overdue shift into equities.

  • Rights price is slashed as US firm takes stake

    5 June 2008

    Steven Crawshaw, Bradford & Bingley chief executive officer, has quit due to cardiac health problems as US private equity firm Texas Pacific Group takes a 23 per cent stake in the firm for £179m.

  • RIT top again for Alliance Trust's Isa investors

    5 June 2008

    Alliance Trust Savings has revealed the top 20 investment trusts used by its investors for Isa saving for 2007/08.

  • Ros among thorns

    5 June 2008

  • Royal London to merge international businesses

    10 June 2008

    Royal London is merging its international businesses, Scottish Provident International Life Assurance and Scottish Life International.

  • Salaries set for 10% fall

    5 June 2008

    Salaries for mid and toplevel financial services workers are set to fall by at least 10 per cent this year, says a survey of 20 top City and Wall Street recruiting firms by Smart Cube.

  • Sanlam consolidates UK businesses for reporting purposes

    10 June 2008

    Sanlam has brought the reporting of its different UK business interests under a single entity - Sanlam UK.

  • Schroders shuts multi funds to switch to Nurs

    5 June 2008

    Schroders is to close its three existing multi-manager portfolios and open new versions to convert from Ucits III to non-Ucits retail schemes.

  • ScotProv Intl transfers to RoyLon

    5 June 2008

    Scottish Provident Inter-national has transferred to become part of the Royal London Group.

  • Scottish Life reports increase in demand for CAR

    4 June 2008

    Scottish Life has reported an increase in demand for customer agreed remuneration models.

  • Shake-up ended up on the Rock

    5 June 2008

    Outgoing FSA chairman Sir Callum McCarthy may be responsible for shaking up financial services regulation, but will be remembered most for the regulator's failings over Northern Rock.

  • SIG Global Best Ideas mandate given to Treasury Asia Asset Management

    5 June 2008

    Skandia Investment Group has appointed Treasury Asia Asset Management to run its £30 million Asian mandate for its global best ideas fund.

  • Skipton withdraws BTL SVR for new business

    10 June 2008

    Skipton Building Society is withdrawing its buy to let standard variable rate for new business.

  • Slipping up on oil

    5 June 2008

    The market is in danger of becoming almost as much of a washout as last week's bank holiday. The week before the bank holiday weekend saw equity markets worldwide suffer their worst fall for a quarter and the more shares had recovered, the more ground they gave back.

  • Small change

    5 June 2008

    Having seen a strong bull run in the first half of the decade, stocks in the UK smaller companies sector have recently been overshadowed by their bigger count-erparts following a marked slow down in the economy.

  • Stephen flood

    5 June 2008

    Stephen Flood and his business partner Mark O'Bryne have quietly and quickly become among the top gold traders and investors in the world.

  • Stimulating tales

    5 June 2008

    Emerging Europe governments are pushing forward with much needed investment initiatives to boost the long-term development of their economies. Much of Eastern Europe, and to a lesser extent Turkey, has suffered from under-financing for more than 20 years and poor infrastructure is one of the main obstacles to improving economic growth.

  • System failures

    5 June 2008

  • Terms of engagement

    5 June 2008

    How often do you open your mobile phone bill and groan in disbelief? Or when the bank statement drops on the doormat, do you wonder whether the three gym visits you have made over the last month justify the 40 membership you are paying?

  • Thames River multi-manager team adds to Japan exposure

    4 June 2008

    Thames River multi-manager heads Gary Potter and Robert Burdett have bolstered their Japan exposure across the group’s five-strong fund range.

  • The australian angle

    5 June 2008

  • The CBI became approachable

    5 June 2008

    FSA chairman in waiting Adair Turner is widely credited with building a friendly relationship between the Confederation of British Industry and New Labour during his time as CBI director general.

  • The games we play

    5 June 2008

    Politicians, lorry drivers, brewers and some fund managers are as one. The price of commodities is ridiculous and someone had better do something soon before everyone gets very angry. It is worth remembering that a much smaller group comprising farmers, oil sheikhs and another bunch of fund managers thinks high and rising commodity prices are a blessing. "Bring it on," they cry.

  • The Russia house

    5 June 2008

    I still believe that some of the key themes in the future of world markets are commodities and infrastructure. In the short term, they could be somewhat overcooked, especially oil. I would not be surprised to see it fall back to $100 or so, given that world demand has not picked up in the last few months. Indeed, if anything, it has fallen.

  • There’s no place like home

    4 June 2008

    Fidelity has revealed further changes to its floundering UK range this week following the announcement that John Stavis is to take a six-month sabbatical from the firm.

  • Tisa adds to growing call for early auto-enrolment

    5 June 2008

    The Tax Incentivised Savings Association has joined Standard Life in calling for the Government to allow auto-enrolment into group personal pensions before 2012.

  • Treasury wants independent valuer for NR shareholder compensation

    9 June 2008

    The Treasury is advertising for an independent valuer to assess any compensation that may be due to Northern Rock shareholders following its nationalisation in February.

  • Turning the tables

    5 June 2008

    The FSA is considering compiling a league table based on banks' complaint-handling procedures and publishing the number of complaints that banks and financial services companies receive.

  • Warren opens compliance consultancy

    5 June 2008

    Compliance expert Bill Warren has started a new consultancy providing compliance support for financial services companies.

  • Watchdog fines broker for self-cert failings

    10 June 2008

    The FSA has fined Andrew Jeffreys, trading as Chepstow Financial Services, £10,500 for failures in the sales process for self-certification mortgages.

  • Website offers securities' data

    5 June 2008

    The securitisation industry has started a website giving information on thousands of mortgage-backed bonds and similar deals. Independent data provider Lewtan Technologies launched the service following demands from regulators to open up the world of complex bonds.

  • Why do advisers sell annuities?

    5 June 2008

    Julian Stevens asks why anybody should want a annuity, as if no adviser has ever asked this question before.

  • World view

    5 June 2008

    It would seem that the expanding fund universe should offer plenty of choice for advisers. However, the fund universe isn't really growing, at least not as much as one would expect, considering that there have been nearly 500 launches in the past five years. Numerous closures have kept the overall number of funds fairly consistent for much of the past decade.

  • You've never had it so tough

    5 June 2008

    It is widely assumed that the UK mortgage crisis is part of a worldwide situation but the reality is that the problem has been brewing up in the UK for five years or longer and is much more deep rooted. The Treasury and the Government have known about it and have failed to act.

  • Zinkula becomes COO at L&GIM US

    5 June 2008

    Legal & General Investment Management has appointed Mark Zinkula as chief executive officer of L&G Investment Management America.

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