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Mutuals steal the march over plc rivals

Mutuals are stealing a march over their plc rivals by refusing to pass to borrowers the Bank of England 0.25 per cent base rate increase.

The Bank of England surprised lenders this week by increasing the base rate to 5.25 per cent from 5 per cent but so far only plc&#39s have followed suit and hiked their standard variable rates.

Nationwide and Leeds & Holbeck building societies are freezing their standard variable rates at 6.45 per cent and 6.79 per cent respectively, while Halifax has immediately hit its borrowers pockets by upping its rates by 0.14 per cent to 6.99 per cent, and Virgin has increased its rates by 0.25 per cent to 6.45 per cent.

Abbey National, Alliance & Leicester, Woolwich and plc in the making, Bradford & Bingley, are all reviewing their rates.

But the stance taken by the two mutuals has prompted an angry attack by Virgin press officer Gordon Maw. He says: &#34The companies that have been gloating and saying they are holding rates are the companies that have not passed on the last few rate cuts.&#34

Nationwide press officer Mark Hamilton says: &#34Its another example that we are not profit driven the same way banks are and are able to offer the consumer better value for money.

&#34The fact remains that at 6.45 per cent we are well below the rates being offered by the high street banks.&#34


Portman Building Society – 3 Year Fixed Interest Bond (inserted 17/9/99)

Type: Three Year Fixed Interest BondMinimum-maximum investment: £500-£50,000 (individual) / £100,000 (joint)Interest rates: 6.50% gross pa / AER for a min investment of £500 (£1,000 for postal applications.Term: 3 yearsOffer period: Until further noticeWithdrawal penalties: N/ATel: 0800 807080

PIA gets tough as IFAs shun new PI cover

Thousands of IFAs may face suspension by the PIA over PI cover as newresearch reveals 75 per cent face difficulties obtaining compliantpolicies.The regulator has accused IFAs of having “given up the ghost” and of “notbothering to get PI cover or giving up too easily”.Spokeswoman Sarah Modlock says: “Some are not letting us know they are […]

Cliff Speed joins Aon Investment Consulting practice

Cliff Speed has joined Aon Consulting as a senior consultant and actuary from Bacon & Woodrow.Speed brings expertise in asset and liability modelling. He will be based at Aon&#39s Minories office in the City of London.

US bond specialist opens London office

Specialist US fund manager Payden & Rygel is launching a UK based subsidiary to capitalise on the growing fixed income bond market according to the Financial Times.The fund managers which specialises in bonds is targeting UK investors who are seeking to diversify their portfolios.The London office will be headed by derivative and hedge fund specialist […]


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