Online - April 2011
Mel Kenny says is it never too late for advisers to learn and the profession would be worse off for losing a wealth of experience post-RDR.
John Woolley, of Technical Connection, takes a close look at Budget financial planning opportunities.
Colin Dickie says comparing index trackers with GEBs is like comparing elephants with giraffes.
IFA consultancy Harrison Spence Partnership says many adviser firms are being undervalued.
Provider says decision was made to avoid longer term fee hike.
Aberdeen Asset Management’s multi-manager team is rebranding its £7.9m multi-asset growth fund and is giving it a stronger total return mandate.
Aberdeen Asset Management reports 54 per cent increase in pre-tax profits for the last six months.
Association of Consulting Actuaries chairman Stuart Southall urges policymakers deliver on coalition pledge.
Living Time becomes first fixed-term annuity provider to join the firm’s annuity panel.
IFAs have called for adjudicators to have industry experience and minimum industry qualification levels in a survey.
CII noticed problems when candidates were unable to load exam.
Newly appointed chief executive Adrian Grace confirms structure of leadership team.
Stephen Snowden to co-manage two investment grade bond funds with Euan McNeil.
Aegon Asset Management has reappointed Stephen Snowden seven years after he left the firm to join Old Mutual Asset Managers.
Product available for £999 completion fee at 3.48%.
Trust calls on shareholders to reject proposal from Laxey, an activist investor, to take a stricter approach to controlling the discount at which the trust’s shares trade.
IFG Group has announced that an approach has been made for the Sipp and international corporate trustee services company.
Artemis Investment Management has taken on two fund managers to create a new global equities team.
Artemis UK Special Situations fund co-manager Derek Stuart has reshuffled his holdings in the utilities sector by selling out of National Grid and International Power.
Average LTV now 60.8%, up from 56.2% in March 2010.
The firm will also introduce an inheritance guarantee as it looks to “revamp and refresh” its equity release offering.
Guaranteed 80 and guaranteed 90 products will allow investors to take limited investment risk and could be placed on the provider’s pension wrapper.
The Aviva Platform will bring legacy assets and wrap together and include protection policies and annuities.
Earnings fall from £1.24m to £1.01 for Q1 2011.
Baillie Gifford is to convert its £32m European Smaller Companies fund into a global smaller companies mandate named Global Discovery, subject to investors’ approval.
Adam Smith Institute says solutions should be market led.
FSA says banks have a responsibility to assess whether every PPI complaint can be progressed, rather than simply delay cases.
Largest cut at 75% LTV, with mortgage now starting at 2.79% above base rate.
Barclays has announced a 9 per cent fall in pre-tax profits for the first quarter of 2011 and expects to pay £100m towards Government bank levy.
Rate kept at 0.5% for 25 consecutive months.
Q1 saw small upturn in economy after 0.5% decline in Q4 2010.
Rates start from 2.75 per cent.
BSA chairman David Webster calls on regulators to minimise increased regulatory costs on building societies.
Merchant Investors to be rebranded Sanlam Investments and Pensions, Buckles Investment Services to become Sanlam Private Wealth.
Business Secretary Vince Cable attacks RBS for setting up obstacles to prevent report into its collapse.
Prime Minister David Cameron indicates he may block Brown bid to become IMF chief because he does not “get” dangers of high debt.
Adam Byford will take over from Matt Humphrey next month.
Discretionary manager launches five risk-rated funds.
Govt announces plans to give scheme administrators and private sector joint stake in running scheme.
CML expects conveyancing quality mark to become industry standard.
Davis was previously chief executive of Openwork.
Former Skandia tax guru Colin Jelley will start at the firm in May.
Countrywide has acquired Mortgage Intelligence in a deal that has raised its mortgage market share to over six per cent.
Talks between Countrywide and Savills Private Finance over a potential acquisition have collapsed, Money Marketing understands.
Fixed rates start at 4.15% and flexx deals at 2.59%.
Andrew Dalton, the founder of the Dalton Strategic Partnership, has passed away following a heart attack, leaving Magnus Spence to head up the firm.
Losses believed to be around £6m.
The European Central Bank is raising its rates from 1 per cent to 1.25 per cent to help reduce above-target inflation in the eurozone.
Pension Capital Strategies says the majority of DB schemes will close this year despite £93bn funding boost.
The European Union is looking to agree a bail-out package for debt-stricken Portugal by the middle of May.
UK contributions could reach up to £4.5bn.
European Parliament proposes increasing limit for investment compensation and a pre-funding model with firms contributing 0.3 per cent of assets towards the scheme.
Latest announcement comes after recent launch onto Transact.
Protection Forum says differences in commission options and tele-underwriting need to be addressed.
European chief executive Robert Higginbotham warns the regulator’s approach is damaging the UK’s competitiveness.
Business volumes grew across all sectors, apart from banking and finance houses.
World’s central banks and regulators say there are a number of “disquieting developments” in the ETF market.
First State Investments is planning a fixed income offering for British investors later this year.
Avery will be responsible for finding a replacement for departing chief Martin Davis.
Fraudulent letters and emails are in circulation claiming to be from the FOS.
Firm expects deal activity to remain on the agenda in 2011.
Former UBS and Prudential man will determine the firm’s at-retirement strategy.
FSA imposes fines totalling £450,000 on four advisers who used misleading and inaccurate information to secure mortgages.
Adrian Bancroft has been convicted of 18 financial crime offences, including arranging clients’ policies to be surrendered without their knowledge.
The twelve CCJs against the adviser, or her firm, totalled £531,224.
Specialist Solutions fined £35k over UCIS failings, with another firm censured over failings related to geared traded endowment policy sales.
Building Society has been fined £1.4m over failing to give suitable advice on Keydata products.
Move to new regulatory structure sees 352 staff leave the regulator over the last year.
Law firm Clifford Chance commissioned to conduct inquiry.
Supervision and risk business units have been replaced by Prudential Business Unit and Conduct Business Unit.
The FSA’s report into the collapse of RBS is indefinitely delayed amid three way legal wrangling.
The regulator plans to consult on reforming FSCS funding by the end of the year.
European Mortgage Federation says EC directive “not fit for purpose”.
New approach revealed by FSA head of insurance Julian Adams.
Plan promises 5% yearly income from home.
The FSA has issued a warning at the BSA conference that mutuals must improve their compliance structures.
Regulator says firm has no connection with St James’s Place and is not authorised to carry out regulated activity in the UK.
Investment intermediaries are expected to face a lower levy than the £40m previous estimate.
The FSCS has announced that any recoveries relating to Keydata compensation will first go to investment fund managers rather than advisers.
TSC report slams banks’ dominance in “gateway” current account market for hitting competition in product market.
Compensation scheme has finalised deal with the building society over compensation already paid for Keydata sales.
Former Gartmore star duo Roger Guy and Guillaume Rambourg are set to launch a hedge fund together, according to reports.
ONS figures show UK economy has returned to growth in the first three months of 2011.
Cardy has joined Bluecoat software to develop its FinPlan practice management system.
Former PM says not realising how entangled and global financial services are meant FSA had wrong focus.
DWP proposes limited acceleration of current plans alongside the “more radical” option of a £140 single-tier benefit for future retirees.
ACA chairman Stuart Southall says policymakers should increase employer tax-incentivised limit to improve access to independent financial advice.
Chartered Institute of Taxation says tax changes should be consulted on not announced at last minute.
Service available online, over phone and face-to-face.
Figure 2% down from £11.5bn in March 2010.
Code calls on people to take advice before transferring.
Henderson Group has seen its assets under management fall by £1.2bn in the first quarter of 2011.
Banks have 21 days to consider whether to appeal.
The FSA may still lose its enforcement powers to a new force that will take over from the Serious Organised Crime Agency in 2013.
House purchase approvals remain mostly static between February and March.
PYV chief executive Neil Pointon will move to Howden as part of the acquisition.
Iceland has once again rejected a deal that would see the UK and the Netherlands reimbursed for money lost during the collapse of the country’s banking system in 2008.
The £40m Ignis international greater China fund has been renamed and the wording of its investment policy changed to reflect its lack of exposure to Taiwan.
Ignis Asset Management head of marketing Rob Page is leaving the firm to join former Liontrust colleagues Jeremy Lang and William Pattisson at Ardevora Asset Management.
Trade body has decided not to pursue a judicial review of the Financial Services Compensation Scheme interim levy.
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has become the latest organisation to revise down its economic growth forecast for UK.
Pan-European insurance bodies have written to the European Commissioner saying their concerns are being largely ignored.
Raising the base interest rate to address inflation could be disastrous for Britain’s economic growth if carried out too soon, according to M&G Investment’s Ben Lord.
The interim Financial Policy Committee will hold first formal meeting on June 16
James Hay says iSIPP designed with RDR regulations in mind.
JO Hambro Capital Management has bought Silver Metis Capital Management, an investment boutique specialising in Asian stocks.
Group pre-tax profit down 51.1% to £25.5m in 2010.
Rates available from 4.79 per cent.
Product is fixed for two years at 5.79%.
Provider has seen a 12 per cent rise in new business in the first quarter of 2011.
Shadow Treasury financial secretary Chris Leslie slams ’pathetic’ £2.6bn levy.
Tycho van Wijk and Tjeert Keijzer will join Lazard Asset Management to launch an unconstrained global equity strategy.
Curran taking on responsibilities of national director of mortgages Debbie McArdle after she left business.
Lighthouse has three year contract to provide financial advice to union’s 121,000 members.
Liontrust is to sell off its credit business to Avoca Capital Holdings.
Lloyds claims Vickers’ proposals are based on “limited evidence”.
Latest announcement follows 570 job losses last month.
Move comes after closure of C&G for Intermediaries.
Kevin Purvey to leave after four LBG intermediary bosses were asked to reapply for their jobs.
Bank preparing to offload Scottish Widows as part of a review by chief executive António Horta-Osório, according to reports.
Luke Kerr has resumed his management of the £179m Old Mutual UK Dynamic Equity fund after a year’s break to focus on his health.
Four firms in the race for LV= Asset Management, according to reports.
M&G has announced several manager moves to a number of its retail funds, including the appointment of a new co-manager on its European strategic value fund.
Neil Bridge, the former head of UK retail sales at Schroders, will become MAM Funds’ new head of business development.
Leading markets plunge as S&P downgrades US debt outlook from stable to negative.
Bank of England governor Mervyn King has warned of the “severe” consequences of raising interest rates.
Sipp and SSAS administration firm has held “various discussions” with third parties about sale or transfer of Sipp business despite returning to profit in 2010.
British banks could suffer downgrades or reviews to their credit ratings because authorities are no longer as willing to bail them out, ratings agency Moody’s says.
Figure is an improvement on £696k loss the year before.
Figures 12% down on the year before.
Datamonitor says market will not grow much this year but will reach £170bn by 2014.
Over 500 new products added in March, taking total products to 10,418.
Buy-to-let lender MT pulled out of new lending in February 2008.
Public accounts committee report says Treasury had lack of effective sanctions for when RBS and Lloyds failed to meet lending targets.
Treasury select committee says new Government scheme to help FTBs could push up prices, making homes less affordable.
Anne Gunther previously chief executive of Standard Life Bank.
Customers hit out at N&P board for delays in dealing with the problems over Keydata.
Occupational pensions organisation warns of potential “governance vacuum” if employers switch to contract-based pensions provision.
Applications received from April 6 considered on repayment basis only.
Brokers will have to submit all pre-sale application enquiries through LiveTALK from May 3.
New Zealand-based Southern Star Retirement Fund to shut on June 30.
Weeks after Guernsey release code, NZ begins work on its own.
Falling incomes, 5% inflation and Government cuts mean sluggish recovery.
Lender has launched a number of buy-to-let percentage fee products and tracker.
Wrap says it expects to break even this year.
Economic growth in the G7 countries outside Japan could rise to an annualised rate of about 3 per cent in the first half of 2011, according to the OECD.
Sites targeted disabled people, military personnel and those with impaired credit history.
ABI research shows customers underestimate the cost of financial advice, as trade body continues to push for simplified advice model.
Hargreaves Lansdown says PPI’s maximum drawdown estimate of 3.1 million people is “conservative”.
Over 100 MPs sign motion calling for Northern Rock to be remutualised.
UK could be asked to contribute up to £4.4bn.
Portugal has agreed the details of its anticipated bailout with the international community as its finances become increasingly stretched.
Firm says feedback from partners made it reconsider proposal.
Firm expects up to 70 partners to join new proposition.
At least 18 members of Positive Solutions resign after the firm hikes its member charges by up to 5 per cent.
Lender has also replaced its percentage fees with fixed fees.
Tidjane Thiam will get an annual bonus for last year of £1.57m, despite failed AIA bid.
Pension provider says “correction payments” will be made to 39,000 Scottish Amicable unit-linked pension policyholders.
PSigma income fund manager Bill Mott has made changes to his portfolio following continued unrest in the Middle East and as the oil price nears $120 a barrel.
Six separate public sector organisations will today issue an application for a judicial review of change in pensions inflation measure.
The heads of UK retail and global distribution at Gartmore will not join Henderson upon the completion of the Gartmore acquisition on Monday.
Independent Commission on Banking recommends ring-fencing retail banking, higher capital adequacy, a bigger Lloyds sell-off and making it easier to switch accounts.
Managing director Steve Lewis says deal will allow the Retirement Partnership to expand its services in the corporate sector.
Royal London reports mixed first quarter as asset management sales drop from £578.7m in Q1 last year to £113.4m this year.
Palmer previously Legal & General group finance director.
Royal London has signed a deal that sets out the potential transfer of Royal Liver’s asset and liabilities to Royal London.
Ratings agency could downgrade Japan’s debt rating amid fears finances will suffer following earthquake and tsunami disasters.
Santander Asset Management is to build a global multi-manager team, with Tom Caddick heading fund management and José María Martínez-Sanjuán heading fund selection.
Business will be renamed SPF Private Clients.
Schroders has cut its forecast for Japanese GDP growth in 2011 from 1.2% to 0.8% as a consequence of last month’s earthquake and tsunami.
Schroders is to launch a commodity investment trust, to be run by its specialist absolute return multi-managers firm, Schroders NewFinance Capital.
MPC member Andrew Sentance says committee’s credibility and commitment to inflation target could have been eroded.
Network says initial pilot will train 15 students to QCF Level 4 in 18 months.
Serious Fraud Office says not enough evidence to prosecute so will focus on tracing ’misappropriated’ assets.
Bazalgette will take up new role on 1 July 2011.
Standard Life Investments has confirmed it intends to soft-close its UK smaller companies fund
Strategies numbered one to five depending on risk level.
Levin to take over from Andre Oszmann as CEO from June.
Succession Advisory Services member Berkeley Burke has acquired Leicester IFA firm Baker Richmond Financial Services.
Firm sells institutional fixed income business Epic Asset Management to Hume Capital for £2.1m as part of plans to focus on wealth management.
Products are two-year discounts at 4.99%.
The network says many employers are unsure of full responsibilities ahead of changes.
Supermarket giant has “excess” of deposits over loans in preparation of mortgage launch.
In case you’ve missed it, we now have a new flexible pension regime. At time of going to press it is unclear how many providers have been either willing or able to offer the full fexibility available to clients.
Threadneedle has hired Daniel Isidori from Barings Asset Management to manage its £1.2 billion Latin America fund.
Range includes one-year tracker at base rate plus 1.99% up to 65% LTV.
Conservative MP Steven Baker says the Government should be banned from borrowing money.
Firm says loss caused by “exceptional costs” of Edward Jones integration and opening of 11 new offices.
The Treasury to introducing clause in the Finance Bill to stop Qrops being used for tax avoidance.
Lack of evidence leads to rejection of early access; officials propose simplification of trivial commutation rules by looking at expansion to private pensions.
How should investment trusts use discount control mechanisms?
The UK CPI annual rate of inflation has fallen to 4 per cent, down from 4.4 per cent in February.
UK unemployment falls by 17,000.
Just 21% of private sector schemes now open to new joiners, compared with 88% 10 years ago.
VCTs took in a total of £365m in the 2010/11 tax season, according to figures from the Association of Investment Companies.
Forum will aim for better communication between the FSA and consultancy firms helping advisers transitioning to the RDR.
Loss Capacity Simulator examines client capacity for loss in a market crash.
Full transcript of Invesco Perpetual income manager Neil Woodford from earlier this week.
Wrap assets up 13 per cent and corporate pension inflows rise 85 per cent.
Yorkshire Building Society has agreed terms to takeover Norwich & Peterborough Building Society.