Investors who bought into split capital investment trusts direct from fund managers could use the Om...
Investors who bought into split capital investment trusts direct from fund managers could use the Ombudsman's office to get redress if they think the advertising was misleading according to a piece in today's The Daily Telegraph.
However, there is some confusion over the exact powers of the Ombudsman's office according to the paper, which are currently the subject of discussions between the FSA and the office of the Financial Ombudsman.
"The FSA confirmed that it would be writing a joint letter with the Ombudsman by Friday … to clarify the scope of the Ombudsman's powers," the Telegraph says.
Yesterday, shareholders in the Aberdeen High Income investment trust voted to suspend dividend payments in order to avoid liquidation of the fund.
The Scotsman says that there are increasing whispers that the split caps debacle has left Aberdeen open to a takeover bid because of the effects on its share price, which is down 40% this year.
"If they [AAM] could just ring-fence the split-capital side of the business, they could well be vulnerable to a bid, or even welcome it at the right price. Splits are a relatively small part of the overall business. It is no big deal," The Scotsman quotes one City gent.
However, the paper adds that Aberdeen's chief executive Martin Gilbert is unlikely to accept a deal that does not pay "top dollar" for the company's assets.
Further news of disposals from Royal & Sun Alliance in today's FT, which notes the sale of the company's Isle of Man offshore life assurance subsidiary to Friends Provident for £133m.
It is the second of seven disposals planned this year, the FT says.
The Times says that fast rising house prices will be the subject of an Office of Fair Trading investigation into gazumping and the role played by estate agents in encouraging buyers to take out mortgages through advisers employed in their offices.
Last year saw a record number of complaints filed with the OFT about estate agents, and The Times says that the findings of the investigation could result in legislative changes.
With the number of new houses coming on to the market the lowest since the Second World War, buyers are being faced with a shrinking supply of housing, which is now such a serious problem chancellor Gordon Brown is expected to start addressing the financing of cheaper housing and the Treasury is already proposing to force builders to construct on brownfield sites, The Times says.
Abbey National is today facing further questions over its performance following yesterday's shock profits warning due to bad debt provisions announced before the firm goes into its closed period.
The Times says investors and analysts are not convinced the company is putting all its cards on the table, given that it was just some weeks ago it said performance was on track, only to turn around yesterday and say they were not.
The Daily Telegraph says that the profits warning was nothing less than a "shock" for investors who attended a recent meeting with the company.
"I am totally bemused. Abbey National recently held a series of investor meetings that I would have described as upbeat. But this is a catalogue of disasters," the Telegraph quotes one investor.
The Scotsman says the future of Abbey National chief executive Ian Harley is in doubt.
Another disaster may be about to hit the operators of the Visa and Mastercard systems, which stand accused of abusing a monopoly position in a massive class action lawsuit in the US that yesterday got the go-ahead to proceed with the action.
The Telegraph says a judge yesterday said the massive $100bn lawsuit involving 4 million retailers could proceed after the US Supreme Court threw out an attempt by Visa and Mastercard to halt the trial.
The retailers claim they are charged exorbitant processing fees compared to other card issuers, and that they are forced to accept the cards at all their stores.
The accountancy scandals continue in the US with news that Deloitte & Touche has been sacked by ailing US cable television operator Adelphia Communications after the company was forced to restate its earnings for the past two years due to "questionable accounting practices".
The Telegraph says Deloitte joins PricewaterhouseCoopers, which is under investigation over its role in the alleged accounting irregularities at troubled conglomerate Tyco.
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