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&#39Biggest surge since 1980s&#39

Nationwide says 2002 saw the biggest surge in house sales and prices since

the late 1980s&#39 boom but the society warns of a deterioration this year.

It says the belief that low interest rates are here to stay is encouraging

people to borrow and remortgage. Despite predicting a downturn in London

due to affordability, Nationwide says overall prices will rise by 10 per

cent over the year compared with 25 per cent last year.

But the society says its predictions depend on sentiment, which could be

adversely affected by interest rate increases. It believes interest rates

will rise to 4.75 per cent by the end of the year.

Nationwide group economist Alex Bannister says: “Certain hotspots, and

particularly parts of London, where affordability is stretched and where

employment, income and confidence are deteriorating, may experience price

declines. However, we do not expect generalised sustained price falls.”


Bafta night for Forum

The Financial Services Forum is holding its third annual members&#39conference on February 26 at the British Academy of Film and TelevisionArts on Piccadilly in London.Contributors to the conference include Abbey National marketing directorJanet Connor, First Direct head of brand Nick Bowyer and AMP head ofthird-party distribution Damon Watkins. All members of the FinancialServices Forum are […]

Independent view

From where I am sat, looking at the new proposals for depolarisation, itdoes not look too different from what we have already. I suspect that manyIFAs and life companies will be laughing up their sleeves that theirlobbying has stopped the previously proposed three-tier system.But it is a short-term victory. The crux of the matter is […]

Aegon adds protection specialist to IFA stable

Aegon UK has continued its IFA acquisition drive by taking a 9.99 per centstake in Personal Touch Insurance for around £2m.The Solihull-based protection specialist has 24 RIs and more than 10,500agents distributing financial services, mortgages and general insuranceproducts to support the core business.Personal Touch has grown rapidly since it started trading seven years ago.Over the […]

Nationwide calls for fairer financial services

Nationwide Building Society is calling on the Government and FSA to take action to make UK financial services fairer and more transparent.It has contacted 50 MP and civil servants including the Chancellor of the Exchequer setting them five challenges. These are to provide mortgage customers with information they really need and remove confusion, promote the […]


What employers should expect over the next five years

A major feature of our articles is looking into the Jelf Employee Benefits crystal ball to predict changes and trends that may influence the short and medium term shape of UK employee benefits.  By flagging such changes early we aim to provide our followers with the tools to make sensible and informed decisions on their benefits offerings.


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