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Aussie bank to target A&L for 2002 takeover

Three leading City analysts are tipping Alliance & Leicester as an

acquisition target for Nat-ional Australia Bank once the UK bank&#39s takeover

protection clause expires next April.

The UK&#39s sixth-biggest mortgage lender has emerged as the market favourite

to be snapped up by NAB, which is on a UK acquisition trail.

Banking analysts claim A&L is not financially strong enough to compete in

the current ultra-low-margin environment.

One analyst says A&L&#39s “mediocre” results this year, combined with the

diminishing number of takeover prospects in the UK, make it a natural

target for NAB.

Another suggests that NAB may also be considering a bid for Bradford &

Bingley but believes that A&L is the more likely target as it has better

synergies with the Australian bank.

NAB already owns Yorkshire, Clydesdale and National Irish Banks and has

made no secret of its desire to establish a bigger presence in the UK


A third analyst says: “A&L is the most obvious target for NAB and it needs

to do a deal. A&L has diversified into a number of areas which would

overlap with NAB plus its formal protection ends in April.”

A NAB spokesman says: “We have identified the UK as an area for growth and

we are keeping an eye on any potential acquisitions.”

An A&L spokesman says: “We do not comment on speculation but the chairman

has repeatedly said we wish to remain independent.”


Industry figures take to the hustings

A handful of figures from financial services are set to seek election asMPs, including leading investment IFA Jason Hollands. Best Invest deputy managing director Jason Hollands is contesting the safeLabour seat of Hornsey and Wood Green in North London for the Conservatives. Another standing on the Tory ticket is Equitable Life pensionsadministrator Philip Cochrane in […]

FSA adopts light touch for exempt advisers

The FSA has issued guidance on overseeing professional firms, includingsol-icitors, which carry out limited investment advice activities but arenot regulated by the FSA. The Government asked the regulator to provide safeguards to consumersdealing with firms which do not require directFSA regulation but whichmight advise on certain investment areas. The regulator says this area is perceived […]

Societies lag on e-commerce

More than half of building societies have not taken their first steps ine-commerce because they cannot afford it, according to a new report. Research commissioned by Deloitte & Touche and e-business solutions groupiE found only 43 per cent of mutuals have e-commerce capability of anykind. Only a handful have technology more advanced than basic onlineapplication […]


At the start of August, the FSA published a consultation paper number 61on The Regulation of Stakeholder Pensions. At the same time, it issued apress release which included this key point – when there is an advisedrecommendation to buy a traditional pension (including one linked to agroup personal pension), the suitability letter will have to […]


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