Influential analyst Ned Cazalet has launched a scathing attack on Standard Life, saying its reserves are severely depleted and that it is pursuing a high-risk investment strategy.
Speaking at a round table organised by F&C, Cazalet said: "Standard Life has lost £9bn out of its £10bn capital. Standard Life is taking riskier and riskier bets. Standard Life is the man who cannot leave the roulette table. It is praying for a win."
Standard Life public affairs manager Jeff Newton says: "Standard Life remains strongly capitalised as proven by the recent renewal of our 'Triple A' ratings by Standard & Poor's and Moody's. We remain committed to equity investment because we believe equities will outperform bonds in the long term. Our strong capital base allows us to pursue this investment strategy and provides a buffer against the kind of market volatility we are experiencing at the moment."