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Leeds & Holbeck sees mortgage lending surge

Leeds & Holbeck Building Society achieved record levels of mortgage lending in the six months to June. L&H lent a total of £371m, up from £359m in the half-year to June 2000, while its income from insurance sales and investments shot up 19 per cent to £7.8m from £6.6m. At 1.2 per cent, the society now claims to have the lowest net interest margin — the difference between mortgage and savings rates — in the building society sector.

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Burrows: will head annuity service

Annuity expert Billy Burrows is teaming up with actuary and pensionconsultant Aspen to set up a specialist annuity IFA. William BurrowsAnnuities will become part of Aspen&#39s fee-based subsidiary, AspenIndividual Clients. It will provide a mainly fee-based advisory service on all aspects ofannuities and income drawdown. Aspen says its decision to expand into theretirement income market […]

Barclays split offshore account

Barclays Private Clients is offering a high interest offshore savings account that is linked to the stockmarket.The high interest index linked deposit account is aimed at investors looking for high interest and capital growth and the security of a capital protected investment.The account has two elements — a high interest savings account and an index-linked […]

Positive Solutions links with Exchange

Positive Solutions is incorporating a customised version of The Exchangeinto its extranet site as part of a deal to provide members with extratechnology services. Positive Solutions members will also have access toThe Exchange&#39s new mortgage sourcing service, which includes a PositiveSolutions mortgage panel and specialist mortgage helpdesk.

Lincoln picks Deloitte to probe appointed rep

Lincoln Assurance is hiring big five accountancy firm Deloitte & Touche toinvestigate the endowment sales of its former appointed representative CityFinancial Partners. Since September 2000, the life office has reviewed a representative sampleof the 31,000 endowment policies that CFP sold over the last 10 years. Ofthe 5,000 reviewed, Lincoln says there is significant evidence ofquestionable […]

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England vs Australia: pensions

Well, the cricket season is here, and England and Australia are stepping up to the wicket. Although we compete with each other in the sporting world, when it comes to pensions, Australia’s pension programme is held up as a model for our auto-enrolment initiative. Auto-enrolment was introduced because people weren’t saving enough into their pensions, and it is still early days but signs are positive. However, in Australia, saving into a pension is compulsory, and in fact employers are the ones who have to pay in. Employees in Australia can make additional contributions into their pensions, but they don’t have to. Should the onus be on the employer or employee to save? Well in the UK we think it’s both, but to get ‘adequate’ savings for retirement it’s the employee who has to pay more in.

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