Pension funds suffer costly VAT defeat

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Pension funds suffer costly VAT defeat

Pension funds suffer costly VAT defeat
Employers with final-salary pension schemes have been dealt a £2bn blow after failing to win a court battle to scoop VAT rebates going back years. She said she would be lobbying the European Commission for an exemption to the rules. It is currently reviewing the VAT directive.
The Times, p. 57

Aviva payout cut rocks pension funds
Leading pension funds are to reconsider the size of their investments in the insurance sector after Aviva slashed its dividend by 44 per cent.
This abstract from the Financial Times was produced by Kantar Media
Financial Times, p. 1

Schroders profits drop as private banking clients quit
The FTSE-listed fund manager Schroders has reported a fall in profits as clients quit its private banking business and performance fee income fell as its investments disappointed. In its asset management business, net revenues were healthier, just 3pc lower as inflows from institutional investors offset a dip in performance fees.
The Daily Telegraph Business, p. 4
Also appeared in : City AM London, p.8, Financial Times Companies and Markets, p.23

House prices now within reach of pre-crisis record
House prices in England and Wales are close to reaching record highs last seen in February 2008, according to research out today.
City AM London, p. 4

ECB refuses to act as Europe faces more pain
The European Central Bank has cut its eurozone growth forecast to minus 0.5pc this year and warned of a glacially-slow recovery in 2014. President of the ECB, Mario Draghi, decried the “tragedy” of mass unemployment but said monetary policy cannot resolve the problem
The Daily Telegraph Business, p. 4
Also appeared in : International Herald Tribune, p.14, The Times, p.54, The Times, p.52, International Herald Tribune, p.1, City AM London, p.4, Financial Times, p.1, Financial Times Companies and Markets, p.34, Financial Times, p.5, Financial Times Companies and Markets, p.17

US lenders inch closer to capital return for investors
Banks in the United States are in better shape than at any time since the financial crisis. However, some of Wall Street’s largest institutions, including Goldman Sachs, would only just survive another catastrophe, according to the Federal Reserve Bank.
The Times, p. 57
Also appeared in : Financial Times, p.1, Financial Times, p.1, City AM London, p.1, The Daily Telegraph Business, p.5, Financial Times, p.1, Financial Times Companies and Markets, p.20

RBS customers kept from their cash – but boss gets £700,000
Royal Bank of Scotland’s boss, Stephen Hester, is expected to receive a bonus worth £700,000 despite a new outbreak of computer problems that have left customers demanding compensation.
The Guardian, p. 38
Also appeared in : Independent i, p.9, City AM London, p.5, The Daily Telegraph Business, p.4, City AM London, p.5

Automated banking ‘could cut 40,000 Barclays jobs’
Barclays chief executive Antony Jenkins has suggested that the bank could cut up to 40,000 jobs in the coming years as customers switch to automated banking. Jenkins stated in a Sky News interview that he was just “blue sky thinking about the long-term future”.
The Daily Telegraph Business, p. 4
Also appeared in : City AM London, p.5, The Guardian, p.38, Financial Times Companies and Markets, p.18

Banks’ losses to rise under new accounts rules
The International Accounting Standards Board (IASB) stated yesterday that bank accounting rules are set to force lenders to make more realistic estimates of loan losses, recognising bad debts more quickly and giving investors a better idea of the position of the firms. The new plan will see banks make provisions for expected losses on portfolios of loans, allowing investors and regulators to keep a better track of their true health.
City AM London, p. 5
Also appeared in : The Daily Telegraph Business, p.1, Financial Times Companies and Markets, p.18

Spanish row as banker pockets £2,310 an hour in expenses
Spanish bank boss Miguel Sanz Sesma pocketed €2,680 as expenses for presiding over one-hour meetings for the Caja Navarra, a small savings bank.
The Times, p. 57
Also appeared in : The Times, p.57

Witch-hunt ‘killing banks’
The “McCarthy-like attack” on banks by politicians is killing the financial sector, according to the former chief executive of Standard Chartered. Lord Davies of Abersoch, who served as trade minister under the previous Government, said he found the continuous attack on the financial services sector appalling and likened it to Senator Joseph McCarthy’s witchhunt of communists in 1950s America.
The Times, p. 57
Also appeared in : City AM London, p.25

Standard Life shares the goodwill after investment drive sends profit soaring
Standard Life announced plans to return just over £300 million to shareholders through a special dividend as the booming Edinburgh insurer reported record annual profits.
The Times, p. 57
Also appeared in : Financial Times Companies and Markets, p.23

BoJ head bows out leaving policy on hold
The Bank of Japan left monetary settings on hold, rejecting proposals for more urgent easing from two of his board members.
This abstract from the Financial Times was produced by Kantar Media
Financial Times, p. 5

Brazil hints at looming rate rise
Brazil’s central bank is seeking to reaffirm the credibility of its inflation targeting regime.
This abstract from the Financial Times was produced by Kantar Media
Financial Times, p. 5

HSBC audit up for grabs after watchdog probe
Pressure to open up the accountancy market appears to be working, as HSBC is putting its audit contract out to tender for the first time in more than 20 years.
Evening Standard London, p. 49

Foreign banks and credit cards may be used to lift lending
A menagerie of institutions, including foreign banks, credit card firms and car financing businesses, are likely to come under the microscope as the Bank of England looks for fresh ways of bolstering the flow of finance. Officials have been examining a range of options for broadening the scope of the Funding for Lending Scheme in light of concerns that small businesses in particular are struggling to raise credit from banks.
The Times, p. 54

Banks go cold on setting PPI deadline amid fears of backlash
An attempt by big banks to convince the financial regulator to impose a cut-off date for claims against payment protection insurance mis-selling looks set for failure amidst growing hostility towards the British Bankers’ Association. The big high street banks are moving away from the idea of setting a date to end the claims and the subsequent launch of a publicity drive to make the public aware of the deadline to make a claim.
The Times, p. 53

Bank of Ireland’s mortgage rate rise puts pressure on watchdog
Regulators are coming under parliamentary pressure to explain their inactivity over Bank of Ireland UK, which was last week accused of breaking its promises by doubling interest bills for 13,500 British customers on so-called “tracker” mortgages. Andrew Tyrie, the chairman of the Treasury Select Committee, has written to Martin Wheatley, the conduct supremo at the Financial Services Authority, asking for answers.
The Times, p. 56

Osborne’s monetary policy errors won’t manage to stimulate growth
George Osborne looks poised to announce a new era of looser monetary policy by changing the Bank of England’s mandate of targeting inflation.
City AM London, p. 24

The above articles appeared on 08/03/13 reproduced with the kind permission of Kantar Media UK. All rights reserved.

Charterbridge Private Financial Planning, Independent Financial Advice, Thornbury, Bristol.