British regulator to fine, ban bosses and firms over pension advice

A maintenance worker cleans the entrance area of the headquarters of the new Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) in the Canary Wharf business district of London April 1, 2013. — Reuters pic
A maintenance worker cleans the entrance area of the headquarters of the new Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) in the Canary Wharf business district of London April 1, 2013. — Reuters pic

LONDON, May 9 — Britain’s financial regulator plans to fine and ban five investment company bosses, alleging their reckless behaviour prompted more than 2,000 people to invest £76 million (RM411.3 million) in risky and unsuitable pension products.

The Financial Conduct Authority said today it also planned to fine investment company Bank House Investment Management just under £312,000 and publicly censure two other companies, Financial Page Ltd and Henderson Carter Associates, which are both now in liquidation.

Financial Page director Andrew Page and Thomas Ward, who the FCA called an unapproved “de facto” co-director, Henderson Carter director Aiden Henderson and Bank House bosses Robert Ward and Tristan Freer face fines of between £52,725 and £416,558, the FCA said.

The five company directors and Bank House are challenging the decision by appealing to the Upper Tribunal, which hears such disputes, the FCA added. The tribunal has the power to overturn FCA decisions or impose tougher penalties.



Lawyers for the directors and companies named by the FCA were not immediately available for comment.

The FCA said the companies outsourced functions to unauthorised third parties, leading to recommendations that clients switch and transfer pensions to high risk, illiquid and unsuitable products.

Around a thousand customers have so far received £26.8 million   from the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS), the British‘s safety net and compensation fund of last resort for customers of regulated businesses.

The FSCS is investigating further claims. — Reuters

Source: The Malay Mail Online

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