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Equitable &#39coming out of intensive care&#39, says Treves

Equitable Life&#39s finances are gradually stabilising, as attention shifts to its regulation by the DTI more than a decade ago, following claims it had a black hole of £1.3bn in its finances in the early 1990s.

A report, commissioned by the Equitable Members&#39 Action Group from accountant Burgess Hodgson and submitted to the Penrose inquiry, claims the DTI would have known about a newly revealed £1.3bn deficit as early as the start of the 1990s.

In Equitable&#39s preliminary announcement for 2002, chairman Vanni Treves expresses cautious optimism after transferring from equities saw the with-profits fund post returns of 4.8 per cent, allowing a non-guaranteed interim bonus of up to 3.5 per cent to be paid.

Despite legal costs of £5.1m and £3.8bn surrenders last year, Equitable met the regulatory solvency margin with the help of £200m future profits.

Equitable says it is reconsidering its compensation scheme on the grounds it is unfair to continuing policyholders. Emag has renewed its calls for Government compensation while Equitable has repeated it will consider suing the Government and FSA after Penrose&#39s report is published.

Burgess Hodgson partner Colin Slater says: “We have revealed irrefutable evidence to show policyholders were failed for more than a decade not only by the management of Equitable Life but by the regulators who had at their fingertips all the same information, yet failed to protect policyholders.”

Treves says: “I believe these results show that Equitable Life is gradually coming out of intensive care. Although responding to treatment, we are some way off declaring a clean bill of health.”


Claims collapse against Temple

Seven former RJ Temple consultants have lost their claims against the national IFA for unfair dismissal.The first case was brought by former senior managers Philip Gerry, Andrew Cole, Alan Hemsworth and Barry Martin-Pitt, now directors at IFA Westpoint Financial, which has six reg- istered individuals.They alleged unfair and constructive dismissal, unlawful deduction of commission, underpayment […]

Energy regulator McCarthy switches to be FSA chairman

The Treasury has appointed Callum McCarthy, currently the chairman of energy regulator Ofgem, as the next FSA chairman, replacing Howard Davies.Chancellor Gordon Brown ended speculation over who would replace Davies, who announced last December that he would be leaving the FSA in September this year to become director of the London School of Economics.McCarthy joins […]

Legal & General says its plans can shield Isa cash from risk

Legal & General is urging investors to preserve the funds built up in their Peps or Isas by transferring to its protected index plan 2 or index growth and protection plan.It says many investors have built up big capital sums over the years and may want to protect capital from stockmarket turbulence.It says by transferring […]

Inside edge

There has been a fair bit of palaver in the newspapers since Opra issued guidance regarding the payment of transfer values from final-salary pension schemes. What&#39s it all about?The rules governing the way that pension transfers are calculated and paid have not changed since the Pensions Act 1995 came into effect and allowed trustees to […]

Neptune video: Indian valuations and Modi’s pro-investment agenda

Kunal Desai, Head of Indian Equities, discusses his expectations for the Indian market and highlights the key indicators that he is watching for 2015.

In the video, Kunal addresses:

• Indian equity valuations and the importance of stock selection in gaining exposure to the earnings upgrade cycle

• The BJP’s strengthening ambition in its pro-reform, pro-investment agenda


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