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Correspondent&#39s week

Monday finds me flying up the M3 from the New Forest. Hubby had to leave early for Heathrow so I am left in charge of transporting the family unit back to London. For anyone else this would not be a problem but I am terrified of driving.

In fact, every bad thing they say about women drivers is true of me. Fortunately, I am driving a Jeep Cherokee, the car equivalent of a doubledecker bus so other road users tend to think twice before overtaking me on the inside or other such anti-social behaviour.

Thanks to cruise control, I can touch 30mph in the fast lane without noticing while feeding a rice cake to sproglet in the back seat and perfecting my own interpretation of the Beyonce bum wiggle.

What a cheek that those naughty EU people should be trying to make a man pay as much as me for motor cover, eh?

Safely at home, Tuesday soon arrives and with it the endless page checking that press day involves. I am at home trying to interview fund managers while sproglet plays, wrapping electric leads round her neck and poking her fingers into empty plug sockets.

Wednesday, being publication day, as I often have to remind the PR fraternity, is the start of the week for Money Mail and the day on which we decide the stories for the next week.

My ideas – Gordy should scrap the £250 child trust fund and instead subsidise organic baby food and designer romper suits or how about a feature on fund managers and their pets? I get slammed by the editor and I am assigned to term insurance and regular savings instead.

But there is a (questionable) bright spot on the horizon, however – the highlight of the year&#39s social calendar, the annual Investment Management Association dinner.

Luckily, I am on the Britannic table and sitting next to Francis “the Godfather” Ghiloni. It is hard to imagine the amiable Frankie in his youth patrolling the mean streets of Glasgow&#39s ice cream wars in a Mr Whippy van with blackedout windows and go-faster stripes, his only weapon a 99 cone, with flake and hundreds and thousands, I hope. But that is the crazy world of actuaries for you.

But sadly, not even Barry Cryer&#39s gagathon could make this event any less crushingly boring than usual. Note to organisers – please can you jolly it up. I have a suggestion – a fund manager Full Monty line-up. After all, New Star&#39s Tim Steer has already pioneered a new way to attract journalist attention by rolling naked in the snow in sub-zero temperatures while Edward Bonham Carter has a nice line in tight cycling pants.

Hmm, perhaps not to everyone&#39s taste. Seeing as I once tried to compile a fund manager calendar (for charity, honest) and had to stop at January (M&G&#39s Jim Leaviss on a good hair day), I fear this task could be as impossible as beating a benchmark index.

The morning after the night before was always going to be difficult. I need vats of coffee and litres of water, preferably on a sofa in front of an old and long movie such as Ben Hur on a rainy Sunday afternoon but I have got lunch with Witan instead.

Now as an investor myself, I cannot think of a better way for Witan to spend its marketing budget than on promoting itself to me. Lobster as a starter? Well worth the annual management fee. But I just wish they could get their act together on performance, like actually making me some money rather than spending my money on me.

And so to Friday. Interest rates have gone up – savings good, mortgages bad – and someone somewhere is making a lot of money on the difference. The Money Mail team should be looking for new angles on this. But instead, the big news of the day comes from yesterday&#39s Sun and the Dear Deirdre problem page.

How can savings rates and margins compete with the problems of one of DD&#39s readers who finds her jaw locks when she is, um, pleasuring her man? Slack jawed, I try to return to writing about open-ended funds.

Jane Wallace writes on personal finance for the Daily Mail


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