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EU increases VCT limits

The European Commission has enhanced its State Aid approval for Venture Capital Trusts, allowing the UK Government to make a number of changes to the rules surrounding the vehicles.

The size of businesses that can receive funds from VCTs can now be increased from firms with £7m in assets to those with £15m, while the maximum headcount at companies can be lifted from 50 employees to 250.

In addition, qualifying businesses will be able receive £5m in VCT funding, up from the current £2m.

Ian Sayers, director general of the AIC, says the investment freedoms created by the move will lead to “exciting opportunities” for VCTs and the enterprises they invest in.

He says: “Convincing the commission that VCTs should be able to invest in a wider range of business has been a demanding task,”

“The Government’s determination to see these negotiations through has been invaluable and delivered an excellent result.”


Ben Yearsley leaves Hargreaves Lansdown

Hargreaves Lansdown investment manager Ben Yearsley has left the firm after 15 years. Yearsley (pictured) is leaving by mutual consent and it is understood he is taking some time out of the industry. Yearsley joined Hargreaves Lansdown in 1997 and was initially on the investment helpdesk. He joined Mark Dampier in the investment research team […]


Waterson: FSA stance on equity release ‘outdated’

Former Tory shadow pensions minister Nigel Waterson has called for the FSA to soften its stance on equity release, as Safe Home Income Plans relaunches as the Equity Release Council. On Saturday, equity-release trade body Ship confirmed plans to change its name following the decision to expand its membership to include advisers, lawyers, surveyors and […]


The Technical Quiz- May 31

To help you to keep up with the fundamentals of tax, retirement and financial planning, try answering these questions. QUESTION 1 Which of the following values is used in the calculation of a chargeable event gain on a single-premium life assurance policy that arises on the death of the life assured? A) The amount paid […]

Lloyds of London prepares for eurozone collapse

Lloyds of London says it is prepared for a collapse in the eurozone and is reducing exposure to the continent “as much as possible”. The Sunday Telegraph reports Lloyds chief executive Richard Ward said the London market had put a contingency plan in place to switch underwriting to a multi-currency settlement if Greece leaves the […]

China’s economic bounce may already be over

By Mike Riddell (17 May 2016) Most people would explain the rally in global risky assets since mid-February as being primarily down to the spectacular volte-face from the Federal Reserve, where Janet Yellen (and others) dramatically toned down their narrative that the Fed would be hiking rates as many as four times in 2016. This explanation […]


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