View more on these topics

Tories take another look at regulation

The Conservative Party has commissioned an independent review body, which includes former FSA chief executive John Tiner, to look into the burden of regulation.

The review will be led by former head of the Government’s Better Regulation task force Sir David Arculus and will look into where the current regulatory system goes wrong and how it could be improved.

Shadow secretary of state for business Alan Duncan says: “After ten years of Labour, British business is groaning under the weight of an excessive state whose first instinct is to reach for the rulebook and regulate.”

“Not only is this mentality frustrating and expensive for businesses, it is also beginning to affect our competitiveness. We need a thorough intellectual overhaul of what has become a very stale area of policy.”

Elsewhere, the FSA announces its business plan for 2008/09 on Wednesday.

It has already said it will increase adviser fees by 10 to 15 per cent to cover the cost of TCF, and advisers are hoping there will not be any more nasty surprises in store.
Chancellor Alistair Darling has caused a stir by proposing legislation that would allow the Bank of England to provide confidential emergency liquidity assistance to failing banks.

In Financial Stability and Depositor Protection: strengthening the framework, a joint consultation document by HM Treasury, the Bank of England and the FSA, it says special circumstances may call for emergency help to be kept under wraps.

It says: “The Government recognises that maintaining transparency in financial markets is important and that ELA should therefore be disclosed to the markets at an appropriate stage.”

“However, recent events have suggested that there may be special circumstances where, if possible, a period of non-disclosure of ELA is desirable.”

There have been mixed reactions to the idea, with some believing it is necessary to curb consumer panic and others arguing that it does not follow the move towards greater transparency.

And the year looks grim for some mortgage intermediaries with the FSA warning they could face pressures on profitability due to declining business volumes.

The regulator’s 2008 Financial Risk Outlook states mortgage intermediaries will be particularly at risk if a combination of pressure on house prices, tighter credit conditions, lower consumer confidence and high levels of personal debt cause a decline in the demand and supply of mortgages in 2008.

It says due to a “significantly less benign” economic environment, a large minority of consumers could experience financial problems due to high levels of borrowing.

It says: “We are concerned that many consumers are ill-prepared for a deterioration in economic conditions and may have placed too much reliance on their ability to depend on cheap credit and housing wealth to sustain their consumption levels and investment plans.”

The outlook estimates that repayments for consumers coming off fixed rate mortgages in the next year will rise by £210 per month and says this will have a serious impact on the affordability of loans.

FSA chairman Callum McCarthy says: “Firms and consumers need to recognise there are both short and long term risks and should think about the implications.”


Repossessions in 2007 10 per cent lower than expected

The number of repossessions in 2007 was 10 per cent lower than the Council of Mortgage Lenders’ original forecast.The association says that at 0.23 per cent, the repossession rate was less than half the rate experienced throughout the first half of the 1990s. There were 13,500 repossessions in the second half of 2007, which was […]

Buy-to-let boom increased house prices only by extra 7 per cent

The buy-to-let boom has only pushed up house prices by an additional 7 per cent, according to a new study.The National Housing and Planning Advice Unit, a body that advises the Government on housing market affordability, has found that the boom in BTL has had only a moderate impact on rising house prices.The study challenges […]

Life’s a beach

Schroders put on a good beach party bash on a boat on the Thames last week. The whole night was rather bizarre. As the temperature plummeted outside, the guests inside were dressed in grass skirts, shell bikini tops and Hawaiian hats while a steel band played. Blue cocktails and inflatable beach balls completed the effect.The […]

Russian intelligence

Russian shares, along with the rest of world markets, have fallen heavily despite the economy being in excellent shape and its stockmarket having considerably lower price/ earnings ratios than the UK, US and European markets.

Flexible reversionary trusts and estate planning

The suitability of different estate planning solutions will depend on the individual’s own circumstances, needs and objectives. When considering the different solutions available there is a trade-off between inheritance tax (IHT) efficiency and access. Overall a flexible reversionary trust provides a greater level of flexibility than a discounted gift trust and can offer individuals a […]


News and expert analysis straight to your inbox

Sign up


    Leave a comment


    Why register with Money Marketing ?

    Providing trusted insight for professional advisers.  Since 1985 Money Marketing has helped promote and analyse the financial adviser community in the UK and continues to be the trusted industry brand for independent insight and advice.

    News & analysis delivered directly to your inbox
    Register today to receive our range of news alerts including daily and weekly briefings

    Money Marketing Events
    Be the first to hear about our industry leading conferences, awards, roundtables and more.

    Research and insight
    Take part in and see the results of Money Marketing's flagship investigations into industry trends.

    Have your say
    Only registered users can post comments. As the voice of the adviser community, our content generates robust debate. Sign up today and make your voice heard.

    Register now

    Having problems?

    Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3712

    Lines are open Monday to Friday 9:00am -5.00pm