Heading into the week of 3 June, Abbey National was lining up to launch bids for several mutual life...
Heading into the week of 3 June, Abbey National was lining up to launch bids for several mutual life assurance firms as part of its plan to increase in size.
Having already purchased Scottish Mutual at that stage, Abbey had been in negotiations with Scottish Life and was also believed to be in talks with Scottish Amicable and its former tied partner Friends Provident.
In 1995, the life assurance arm of Abbey contributed around 10% of total profits of the group. This was split almost equally between Abbey National Life and Scottish Mutual.
In other Scottish Mutual news, the company appeared to have convinced the Inland Revenue to allow its recently launched Multiple Section 32 buyout plan.
The plan was intended to set up a cluster of 1,000 section 32s, which could then be transferred across individually and fully into a personal pension. There had been some industry debate as to whether this would be allowed because, in effect, it created a segmented Section 32, something not permitted by the Revenue.
Scottish Amicable was also looking to rework the structure of its Personal Equity Portfolio and was hoping the Inland Revenue would reverse its decision to stop the product.
The Revenue and Treasury were understood to be troubled about the name of the product because of its obvious connection with a Pep and the ability to invest more than the normal £6,000 limit.
Back in 1996, the Indian Sub-Continent was the next place on the hit list for London-based fund manager Regent Kingpin.
Fresh from its battle for control of GT Chile, the company was planning to launch a new India fund of funds once calm returned to the political situation in the country. A locally listed Pakistani unit trust was also planned for later that year.
Also hitting headlines five years ago was Sun Life of Canada, then in the process of launching a wholly owned investment subsidiary.
Sun Life of Canada Asset Management, with almost £10bn in assets, was set to manage assets on behalf of the company, including unit trusts and pooled and segregated pension monies.
NPI was about to launch its first guaranteed investment bond, offering a return of 150% of the original investment after six years.
Intermediaries could choose between the growth option or an annual payment of 6.5%, with the return of capital at the end of the six-year period.
After turbulent times for Japan, domestic investors were set to go back into the Japanese equity market, according to Invesco.
Research from the company showed that, for the first time in 35 years, Japanese investors could get higher rates of return from dividend and earnings yields than bank deposits.
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