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Mortality boost hits Equitable Life

Equitable Life has had to set aside £75m in response to concerns that future mortality improvements may be greater than previously expected. In Equitable Life&#39s corporate and financial review the company says it has had to strengthen its reserves due to the continuing trend of strengthening mortality assumptions and longevity, but this has had little affect on its fund for future appropriations, its measure for solvency, which has remained relatively stable at £542m in six months to end of June. The year-end figure for 2003 was £543m

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Which? hunt

A mystery shopping spree by Consumers&#39 Association magazine Which? claims that only three out of 39 advisers surveyed gave acceptable advice. It alleges that brokers and lenders are unclear about their obligations under the mortgage code and the sale of insurance is often pushed heavily even before providing advice on the mortgage. It claims that […]

Poll finds mobile cover a higher priority than income protection

Britons admit to having inadequate protection in case of sickness or loss of income but are unwilling to take advice to rectify the problem, according to a survey by protection provider Bright Grey. The research shows that twice as many people would take out holiday insurance than would take out critical-illness insurance and a third […]

Julian Gibbs

The Greenchip forestry fund has been launched to take advantage of the prevailing low market values of freehold forests. These reflect the depressed state of the UK timber market where prices are only one-third in real terms of those in 1996. These low prices resulted from a combination of factors but in particular the influx […]

Securities Institute sets an examination for IFAs

A new qualification for IFAs from the Securities Institute has received accreditation from the Government&#39s education regulator the Qualifications and Curriculum Authority. The exam, which has been developed in response to the FSA and Financial Services Skills Council exam review, has four papers. The first sitting of papers one, two and three will take place […]

US equity income: the standout market

By James Hackman, head of US Equities at Neptune With a growing dividend market, very low payout ratios and high dividend cover, the US is one of the standout equity income markets globally. It is also one of the most unloved. James Hackman, manager of the top-performing Neptune US Income Fund, highlights six key facts […]

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