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Widows rocked by shock exit

Scottish Widows Investment Management has been rocked by the sudden departure of three of its five-strong European team.

The resignations, which include its high profile head Albert Morillo, comes just weeks after managing director of unit trusts Jamie Macleod was poached by Investec Guinness Flight.

But Widows claims the departures are not connected to the uncertainty surrounding its deal with Lloyds TSB which will result in SWIM combining forces with Hill Samuel.

Morillo, along with two investment directors David Stanistreet and Ken Anderson have tendered resignations to take up posts at US asset management subsidiary BlackRock based in Edinburgh.

Two members of the client service team are also leaving for BlackRock.

The European desk will now be headed by Fiona MacRae who has been with the team since the early eighties.

Widows communications manager Alan Young says: “Albert Morillo had a very important role in the marketplace and obviously made a significant contribution to the success of the fund. But we still have in place two managers who have been there for 10 years, in Fiona MacRae and Franciose Watson, at the core of the European desk.”


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Former Secretary of State Barbara Castle has hit out at the basic state pension for being indexed to prices rather than earnings.The Serps architect calculates in 20 years the basic state pension will be worth only 7 per cent of average national earnings, leaving one in four pensioners dependent on means testing by 2050.

Portman Building Society – Two Year Step Up Bond (inserted 29/11/99)

Two Year Step-Up BondType: Two-year bond with tiered interest rates.Minimum-maximum investment: £500-£50,000 (£100,000 for joint account).Interest rates: 6% gross in year 1, 7% gross in year 2.Term: 2 years.Offer period: Until further notice.Withdrawal penalties: No withdrawals permitted.Tel: 0800 807080.

Norwich Union – Equity Release (inserted 29/11/99)

Flexible Cash Release PlanType: Equity release scheme aimed at the over 60s.Minimum property value: £60,000.Minimum-maximum loan: Minimum of £10,000, subject to a minimum of 10% of the property value. Maximum of £500,000, subject to a maximum of 45% of the property value.Interest rate: 7.85%.Minimum-maximum age: Minimum 60, no maximum.Charges: Valuation fee £165 minimum. Application fee […]

Sofa plea against free advice

Sofa chairman Robert Reid has made a passionate appeal to all IFAs to stop claiming they offer free advice.In his opening speech at the Sofa Update Conference In Birmingham, Reid claimed the services IFAs offer will never be fully valued by consumers unless they increase levels of professionalism and move away from the concept they […]

Inheritance Tax, a tax on the wealthy? Urban myth or fact?

By Kim Jarvis, Technical Manager with Canada Life’s ican Technical Services Team. Inheritance tax has been around in some form since 1796. Estate duty dates back to 1894 and over the years this tax has evolved into the inheritance tax (IHT) we know and love today, which was introduced in 1986 as a replacement for […]


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