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Tribunal upholds FCA ban for PI broker

The Upper Tribunal has upheld a decision by the FCA to ban a former professional indemnity insurance broker. Stephen Allen was issued with a decision notice by the FSA in July 2012, which intended to ban him because he was not a fit and proper person. The regulator said Allen had secretly added a fee […]

Gadget of the fortnight: Quantify your digital marketing

The service I am looking at this week is a great tool for any hard-pressed PR or digital marketing firm that needs to demonstrate the value of the online coverage they are creating either to a client or internally. Coveragebook.com makes it really easy to analyse online coverage and presents measurement data. Our own PR […]

Lenders in talks with tech providers on individual broker validation

Lenders are in talks with technology providers to develop a solution where they can evaluate brokers on an individual basis. Presently, lenders have information at a firm level but sources say a group of lenders has started talks to find a way of validating individual brokers. It is thought the lenders, the identities of which are […]

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Mark Barnett: The hunt is on for resilient companies

With political uncertainty high on the agenda, my focus is to find companies that can be resilient across many different macro-economic outcomes. Resilient in as much as whilst the shares may fall out of favour with the stockmarket for a period, the company itself has the management team and business model in place to enable […]

Strong dollar can be a powerful driver of UK dividend growth in 2015

By Robin Geffen, fund manager and CEO 

This year threatens to be a challenging one for UK dividend hunters. Last year saw an all-time record amount paid out in UK dividends — some £97.4bn, according to research from Capita Dividend Monitor. Yet as Capita also pointed out, out the biggest single factor driving the growth in the fourth quarter of last year was easy to identify: the rising US dollar. 

In our view, this trend is much more than simply a one-quarter phenomenon. It is actually the most profound issue to get right as a UK equity income investor in 2015. We believe that the US dollar will continue to strengthen significantly from its current level. This is due more to the US economy’s demonstrable de-coupling from the rest of the world than to a view on the UK. The US has a strong chance of tightening monetary conditions this year without jeopardising growth or de-stabilising its housing market. The same can unfortunately not be said about the UK.

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