It kicked off on Monday (as I guess most weeks do) but I didn’t do anything other than lie on the couch watching the cricket, having come back from the annual Paris lads’ trip. The weekend is one my favourites as it involves two days of drinking and gambling – my idea of paradise, or it would have been if I had not given most of my money away in bets.With a weary head and considerably lighter pockets, I spent most of the day cheering on England’s cricketers and sending jeering text messages to Australian mates. I know that, as a Canadian, I leave myself open to all manner of abuse for supporting England at anything but I sleep at night knowing that Canadians do not really play any sport but (ice) hockey so there is no conflict of interest I can see. Tuesday saw both the first day of my new beat at Dow Jones Newswires – I have just joined the UK economy desk to take over coverage of the Bank of England – and the Money Marketing 20th anniversary party at Somerset House. Both were challenges, the former for obvious reasons of wanting to make a good impression with my new editor and colleagues, the latter because I wanted to show my face, say hello and escape before things got carried away. The former accomplished, I hope, I trundled along to the MM party, which typically was a good event. I must have left early because the next day stories trickled through about mechanical bull-riding and fountain-dancing, neither of which I saw. Wednesday saw the annual ABI financial media awards, an event which in previous years has seen me in Farringdon at the meat packers’ pubs rather worse for wear at 8.30am. I was sitting on Old Mutual’s table beside the always entertaining Miranda Bellard, the company’s head of corporate communications, who rather too easily rebuffed my attempts to grill her about the proposed takeover of Skandia. My suspicions were aroused as Miranda popped out to answer phone calls every three minutes, a suspicion confirmed the next morning when Skandia issued an update on the takeover attempt. Sitting on Miranda’s other side was Steve Hawkes of the Daily Mirror, who was shortlisted along side me for the business journalist of the year award. Astonish-ingly, I win the award. For the second night in a row, I snuck away at a reasonable hour as I had to be at the Office for National Statistics to cover the monthly retail sales figures first thing in the morning. Thursday saw me making the final hurried preparations for the stag part y in Leeds of Mark Locke, the newest member of Aegon UK’s PR team and one my closest friends. It is my first time as a best man. The day saw me writing a piece about why lower than expected retail sales figures will pile more pressure on the MPC to cut interest rates before the end of the year. I think this economics gig is going to be fun.
The advent of Basel Two may mean significant changes to mortgage products and client credit checks, says John Charcol senior technical manager Ray Boulger. With implementation only 18 months away, lenders are preparing systems to incorporate the stringent risk management measures required by the international regime. Boulger believes lenders will have to adopt credit-scoring across […]
Norwich Union head of public relations James Evans got some impromptu and rather unwelcome training in for a marathon he is about to run when checking into the Tower Thistle ahead of last week’s Money Marketing 20th anniversary bash. An unsympathetic receptionist told Evans that the lift was out of order and his room was […]
The FSA had been checking NDF extra-income and growth plan marketing material for five years before thousands of investors lost much of their capital on the plans. Money Marketing has seen an FSA note of a meeting between NDF and the FSA in December 1999 in which the regulator questioned NDF marketing material. The note […]
Who pays for long-term care is a delicate subject des- igned to raise the blood pressure of millions of carers and their families, who foot the bill in terms of stress, time and money to look after elderly relatives.
By Fiona Tait, pensions specialist In her final article for Royal London, Fiona Tait reviews key changes she believes have transformed, or will transform, pensions. In my 12 years with Royal London I have been paid to review, study and explain the numerous changes to pension legislation which have transformed our industry in that time. This is […]
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The Financial Services Compensation Scheme will automatically compensate hundreds of clients of a collapsed discretionary fund manager, but other investors will have to wait another five months to get their money back. London-based Beaufort Securities has been investigated by both the FCA and US authorities. An indictment from the US Department of Justice alleges that […]
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The FCA has reiterated its warnings that advisers outsourcing defined benefit transfer advice to firms with relevant qualifications cannot divorce themselves from responsibility for the eventual recommendation. While existing FCA rules require additional qualifications to advise on DB transfers, and the FCA has written to all firms who have DB transfer permissions as part of […]