GOVERNMENT plans for more flexible retirement rules suffered a humiliating setback in the Court of A...
GOVERNMENT plans for more flexible retirement rules suffered a humiliating setback in the Court of Appeal yesterday, says the Daily Telegraph.
The court supported the Inland Revenue's right to claw back tax-free cash paid to a man who took his pension eight years ago and then returned to work for the same company.
Any prospect that the tax-free lump sum - which can equal a quarter of the total pension fund or a multiple of final salary - could be retrospectively subject to tax will deter people from continuing to work in retirement.
THE FINANCIAL SERVICES Authority was urged yesterday to widen and make public its investigation into "the magic circle" of split capital investment trust managers, says the FT.
It emerged this week that the regulator had notified Aberdeen Asset Management, the company at the centre of the split trust scandal, that it had evidence managers colluded to buy each other's shares to prop up share prices and fees.
Split capital investment trusts are companies with two or more types of shares. Some pay out high incomes, others prefixed capital sums at set times. Many were sold to investors as safe long-term savings products.
BUT THIS FOLLOWS the collapse of another Aberdeen Asset Management split capital investment trust into insolvency, leaving some 1,600 investors with their capital wiped out.
The stricken fund manager's Leveraged Income Fund, which suspended trading in July due to market losses, said it was winding up operations after liabilities of £41m in bank debt exceeded assets of about £37m - down from more than £250m in just two years.
The fund, which has applied for receivership to Jersey authorities, is the fifth AAM split trust to go insolvent.
BRITAIN'S largest insurance group, Aviva, yesterday warned that it may cut bonus payouts again if there is not an improvement in financial markets, adds the Telegraph.
Just two months ago Aviva cut final bonuses for with-profits policyholders at Norwich Union, its brand name, by up to 43%.
However, Aviva (which was formerly known as CGNU) could gain some relief by relaxing the reserves held in areas where it appears to have been too conservative, such as those held against guaranteed bonuses.
THE TAX burden in Germany has fallen below that of the UK for the first time in a decade, authoritative new statistics show. Reforms by Gerhard Schröder, the German Chancellor, helped to send the tax take in Europe's largest economy tumbling in 2001, according to analysis by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).
By contrast, the UK tax burden remained unchanged last year as Labour chose to shore up the Treasury's coffers and invest in public services. Britain's tax burden - that is, the tax take as a share of national income - was 37.4% in 2001, the OECD said. This compared with a figure of 36.4% for Germany.
Penalty payments and enforcement policy
Fees as low as 0.04%
Only 9,486 applied for the benefit in 12 months
Women and young people adversely affected
UK can be world’s entrepreneurial capital