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FSA sends out lifetime mortgage warning letter

The FSA has sent a letter to firms carrying out low levels of lifetime mortgage business warning they must ensure they have relevant skills and systems in place to deal with the product.
The regulator says the letter, sent by retail themes division director Vernon Everitt, comes on the back of mystery shopping research and thematic work in 2005 and 2006 which found unacceptable standards particularly in firms transacting low volumes of lifetime mortgage business.
The FSA says it hopes the letter will lead to improvements in the quality of advice provided and it will review the situation at the end of the year to consider whether further regulatory action is needed.
The letter calls on firms to ensure clients fully appreciate all the implications of entering into the product, whether the size of mortgage is appropriate, the impact on benefits, the availability of other grants or loans and the impact on a client’s tax position.
The letter says: “New entrants to the market may contribute to better access and increased choice for consumers and to a more competitive market. However, firms which intend to be active must ensure that they have the relevant shills and systems in place to provide suitable advice to clients. Our work suggested that firms for whom lifetime mortgages were a small percentage of their total business often, but not in all cases, failed to meet the required standards.”


Paragon ready to expand outside BTL

Paragon Mortgages is considering entering new markets to expand on its current buy-to-let offering.The lender, which only provides buy-to-let products on its first-charge book although it also offers secured loans, says there are opportunities in the wider market to explore, adding that is has the capability to launch new products in a short timeframe. Paragon […]

Baigrie Davies appoints new MD

Baigrie Davies has appointed a new managing director to replace Tom Baigrie who will continue to oversee the adviser firm but will concentrate on the day-to-day running of sister firm Lifesearch.Currently head of financial planning at Baigrie Davies Ian Howe will be taking up the role of md and will be reporting to Tom Baigrie.Howe […]

Fair dues

The banks are worried about their future. Apparently, they fear they may soon be so strapped for cash, they will all go out of business.

Sales are set to slump as PPI probe looms

High-street lenders could see a big fall in payment protection insurance sales following the Office of Fair Trading’s decision to refer the market to the Competition Commission for further says the probe will act as a warning shot across the bows of “greedy high-street lenders” and result in fewer sales of the product.Managing director […]

Neptune Global Income: Is Japan the best dividend market in the world?

By George Boyd-Bowman, Fund Manager at Neptune The Neptune Global Income Fund seeks exposure to the very best – and often overlooked – income opportunities from across the world. Unconstrained by benchmarks, the fund currently has 24 per cent invested in Japan, differentiating the high conviction portfolio from many of its peers. Watch Neptune Fund […]


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