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150 investors pursue Sipp provider over Harlequin investments

File image of a pension savings potAround 150 investors are pursuing legal claims against GPC Sipp over allegations it is responsible for losses incurred from risky investments.

FS Legal Solicitors says all the claimaints lost money when they invested in the Harlequin property fund through the provider’s Sipp.

A spokesman for the firm told Money Marketing the issues in the case are focused on the obligation GPC Sipp, previously known as Guardian Pension Consultants, had in relation to these investments in Harlequin.

It expects the matter to go to court in early 2019.

In response GPC Sipp managing director Kathryn Taylor says: “Ordinarily GPC Sipp does not comment on such matters. However, having failed to follow all known pre-action protocols it is correct that FS Legal issued proceedings on expiry of limitation in respect of claimants that had previously been compensated by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme as a result of the actions of their IFAs.”

She adds: “GPC Sipp, in common with other Sipp operators facing claims of this nature fanned by claims handlers and other such entities, have rigorously and robustly defended its position and will continue to do so.

“Given that, despite the claim being issued over 18 months ago, matters remain in their infancy it is somewhat premature to be able to confirm when any trial will take place.”

Money Marketing revealed that exclusively obtained court documents show the FCA is set to claim a Sipp provider breached its conduct rules by accepting esoteric investments without due diligence.

Money Marketing has also reported extensively on claims issued against Liberty Sipp, Berkeley Burke and Carey Pensions over their role accepting unregulated investments.



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Apple: a stellar technology story

By Ali Unwin, head of technology sector research

Apple recently announced the highest-ever recorded quarterly net profit ($18bn), with the sale of 74.4 million iPhones helping the company deliver $74.6bn of revenue for the quarter ending December 2014. These sales were largely driven by strong demand for the new iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus. Highlights included Chinese iPhone sales doubling year-on-year and unit growth of 44% in the US — supposedly a well-penetrated market. Apple ended the quarter with $178bn in cash on its balance sheet, having generated a staggering $30bn in free cash flow during the quarter.

At Neptune, we have been long-term believers in the Apple story, and continue to hold the stock in a number of our portfolios based on the company’s long-term growth prospects. This is predicated on our belief that Apple has proved thus far that it can — unusually for a consumer electronics company — maintain high margins for a sustained period of time, even as adoption of new technology slows down and competitors produce similar-specification products.


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