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UK banks lose out as US giant collapses

Several UK banks, including Abbey National and Barclays, have suffered losses of tens of millions of pounds due to the collapse of US energy giant Enron.

Abbey, the UK&#39s second-biggest mortgage lender and owner of Scottish Mutual and Scottish Provident, admitted this week that it has been forced to write off £95m of the £115m it has lent Enron while Barclays&#39 exposure is estimated to be at least £50m.

Royal Bank of Scotland is understood to have lost around £50m while National Australia Bank – owner of UK banks Clydesdale and Yorkshire – says its exposure is around £140m ($200m). The banks claim to be unconcerned by the impact of Enron&#39s demise, saying their exposure is insignificant compared with other companies.

An Abbey spokesman says: “We only have a very small percentage of Enron&#39s total exposure, probably less than 1 per cent. It will be interesting to see which banks have lost what when the final tally comes in.”

A Barclays spokeswoman says: “We have put out a trading statement this week and it does not mention Enron because we consider the loss to be fairly insignificant.”


Davies hints at radical change as he savages &#39toothless&#39 PIA

FSA chairman Howard Davies has rubbished the PIA&#39s record, labelling it costly, ineffective, intrusive, oppressive, toothless and inadequate while tipping radical change to polarisation.Providers say radical reform is now more likely contrary to expectations following the FSA&#39s open meeting in October when the head of polarisation review David Severn appeared to favour gap-filling over multi-ties.Davies, […]

Action needed to boost stakeholder take-up, ABI pensions head tells Sofa conference

ABI head of pensions Joanne Seagers claimed 80 per cent of employers who must designate stakeholder schemes had already done so, but she admitted work needs to be done to get employees to sign up.Speaking at this week&#39s Society of Financial Advisers conference in Birmingham Seagers said the ABI estimates 300,000 to 350,000 firms must […]

FARsighted flexi pay

In 1988, Winterthur Life, then Provident Life, launched its professional advisers&#39 division to offer commission-free pension products aimed at the high-net-worth individual.The products did not have any commission loading and adopted a radical approach to charging. We believed that if we really were to offer commission-free pensions that they should also have clear and open […]

Portman adds £1bn to loan book with Sun Bank deal

Portman Building Society has completed the £95m acquisition of specialist lender Sun Bank from Sun Bank of Canada in a deal which adds almost £1bn to the society&#39s mortgage book.Sun Bank, with 75,000 customers and total assets of £1.2bn, will become the intermediary lending arm of Portman over the next few years as the society […]

The Merchants Trust PLC – April 2017

Welcome to the latest update for The Merchants Trust PLC from the Trust’s portfolio manager, Simon Gergel. Portfolio Review The Merchants Trust reported results this month and the directors were pleased to announce a 35th consecutive year of dividend growth (subject to shareholder approval at the AGM). The Company is proud to be highlighted as […]


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