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  1. Prime minister David Cameron says more support should be given to credit unions in a bid to tackle the “problem” of payday lenders. Speaking in the House of Commons at prime minister’s questions today, Labour MP for St Helens Dave Watts called on Cameron to take action againt payday loan firms. Watts also welcomed a decision by Bolton Wanderers to abandon its sponsorship by payday lender QuickQuid in light of local opposition. He asked Cameron to give local authorities the power to ban “predatory loan sharks” from high streets. Cameron said: “I hear what he says and I wish Bolton Wanderers well for the future. What I say we need to do is give more support to credit unions in our country. That is one of the best ways of addressing this whole problem of payday loans and payday lending.” From April 2014 payday lenders will come under the regulation of the Financial Conduct Authority when it will take responsibility for consumer credit. They are currently monitored by the Office of Fair Trading. Link: http://www.mortgagestrategy.co.uk/latest-news/cameron-says-support-credit-unions-to-tackle-payday-lender-problem/1072666.article
  2. Read the full story http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-22868820
  3. Lloyds Banking Group chief executive, Antonio Horta-Osorio, has said the banking industry urgently needs to address its image problem if it is to attract the best graduates in future. Mr Horta-Osorio warned that a new survey that found just 2pc of students would consider a career in financial services showed the sector had to "urgently" change young people's impression of banks. "We need to take steps as a sector towards rebuilding our reputation through how we behave and what we do. In tandem with this we urgently need to address the perception of banking as an attractive career opportunity for young people," said Mr Horta-Osorio, speaking in Oxford. He added: "The next generation should see banking as an industry that helps to build economic wealth and is playing its part as a useful member of our local communities." Research for Lloyds by YouGov found that a quarter of students would be embarrassed to tell their parents if they got a job with a bank, while 41pc said they distrusted banks and financial services providers. Banks have seen their reputations tarnished in the wake of the financial crisis by a series of scandals, including the rigging of global interest rates, the mis-selling of payment protection insurance and interest rate hedging products, as well as money laundering for terrorist organisations and drug gangs. Link: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/newsbysector/banksandfinance/10054937/Banking-needs-to-change-to-attract-youngsters-says-Lloyds-chief-Antonio-Horta-Osorio.html
  4. Seymour Fortescue, former chief executive of the Banking Code Standards Board, said he believed that payday lenders had about a year to clean up their act or face compulsory regulation. His appointment follows a damning report from the Office of Fair Trading earlier this year on the £2bn industry, with the possibility that the OFT will remove credit licences from the worst offenders. The OFT is still investigating the industry, which is booming as households struggle for cash to buy necessities before payday. The short-term lenders offer loans at high rates – often in excess of 4,000pc a year – and critics claim they do not check applicants sufficiently before lending to them and allow them to "roll over" their loans, creating a spiral of debt. Some smaller businesses in the arena have already had their licences removed or have surrendered them following regulatory reviews. The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) also banned an advert for the lender Cash Lady (operated by PDB Limited) featuring Kerry Katona, the former Atomic Kitten. The ad featured Ms Katona saying: "We've all had money troubles at some point, I know I have. You could see your bank and fill in loads of forms, but there is an easier way to get a loan … So if you need extra cash go to cashlady.co.uk. Fast cash for fast lives." More: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/personalfinance/10050072/Payday-lenders-have-a-year-to-clean-up-their-act-says-their-new-troubleshooter.html
  5. Work and pensions secretary has been challenged to fulfil his claim that he could live on £53 a week in benefits The work and pensions secretary, Iain Duncan Smith, has been challenged to prove that he can fulfil his claim that he could live on £53 a week in benefits. Defending the vast array of welfare reforms being introduced this week as part of the government's deficit reduction programme, Duncan Smith was asked on BBC Radio 4 whether, following an example of a market trader David Bennett, he could survive on £53 a week — the amount Bennett claimed he was left with to live on and roughly equivalent to the lowest rate of jobseeker's allowance given to adults under 25. "If I had to I would, "Duncan Smith replied. His claim prompted an online petition calling on him to prove it that chalked up 25,000 signatures in its first day. It follows an interview on Sunday by Grant Shapps, the Conservative party chairman, in which he cited the fact that his two sons shared a bedroom at his four-bed home, in defence of the so-called bedroom tax. Duncan Smith earns £1,600 a week after tax as a cabinet minister and his travel fares would cost £20 or more from his home to Westminster. Several MPs including most recently the shadow culture minister, Helen Goodman, have tried to live on minimum means. Goodman tried to spend a week last month spending no more than £18 a week on food, the amount she claims will be left for some of her constituents once they have lost some of their housing benefit due to the so-called bedroom tax. Years ago, Mathew Parris, then a Conservative MP, lived on benefit for a week for TV programme World in Action. Duncan Smith admitted that the overall welfare bill is rising if pensions are included, but insisted that the working-age welfare bill will fall by the end of the parliament. Defending the welfare reforms that begin this week, he said: "We are in an economic mess. We inherited a problem where we simply do not have the money to spend on all the things people would like us to do. What I am trying to do is get this so we don't spend money on things that are unfair." Duncan Smith urged critics of the so-called bedroom tax to get the issue in perspective, arguing that there was already no funding for extra rooms when people received housing benefit to rent privately. "They are exactly the same group of people," he said. "The reality is taxpayers are subsidising people to live in these homes. They need to be reassured." The minister said the housing benefit bill had doubled in 10 years under Labour, and a quarter of a million people were living in overcrowded social housing. "What I am trying to do is at least use the money we have got to be fair," he said. "What we are trying to do is get control of the welfare bill … without actually slashing or attacking people, we are trying to reform and change it." As many as 660,000 social housing tenants are deemed to have a spare room and will lose an average £14 a week. Changes to council tax benefit will see bills for an estimated 2.4 million households rise an average £138 a year, with two million paying for the first time, an anti-poverty group said. Shapps was also under pressure to justify claims that more than a third of people who were on incapacity benefit dropped their claims rather than complete a medical assessment, according to government figures. It was claimed 878,300 chose not to be checked for their fitness to work under tests brought in when the benefit was replaced by employment support allowance in 2008. But the figure takes no account of those that did not take a test because they found work or became better, and assumes all were motivated by a desire to avoid questions that would reveal they had no incapacity. Link: http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2013/apr/01/iain-duncan-smith-live-benefits
  6. My friend is getting CB ESA and is in the SG. The other day she got a letter from housing benefit. It says Income you told us about £108.05. How much the law says you need to live on: For you £71 Because you are sick or disabled £14.80 Because you receive ESA support component £34.05 TOTAL £119.85 She doesn't get the £14.80 in CB ESA and the extra little bit is because she got that amount in IB, so i was wondering if she could apply for IR ESA to get the shortfall of £11.80. Sorry if this post is a bit confusing.
  7. http://www.oft.gov.uk/news-and-updates/press/2013/07-13#.UPkjP2eVCtM
  8. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-20803548 Was listening to the usual defensive utterances from the BBA who are saying some of the proposals are likely to ward off investors. They even have the nerve to try and say that any punitive measures would mean the banks having less to lend to businesses.!! As if they have even been bothering to give much needed cash to struggling businesses. In fact even the Government backed 80% guarantee EFG program saw the greedy banks forcing directors to sign personal guarantees and forfeit rights under CCA !!
  9. http://www.credittoday.co.uk/article/14557/online-news/one-in-five-will-seek-payday-loan
  10. MPs will vote tomorrow on a 3p increase. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-20285940
  11. this is taken from part of the BBC text news service from a story with regard to DWP and Atos assessments. Sickness benefit testing system has to many problems, Employment Minister Mark Hoban has conceded.But he said in some cases claimants "Shared responsibility" when benefits were awarded after a long appeal. This came after a BBC interview with a man who lost benefits for 9 months before an appeal restored them. Atos which carries out the tests said it's surveys found 90% were positive about their experience with us. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ I don't think I have to tell you my view on the above crap. dpick
  12. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/money/cars/article-2217224/Motorists-save-13-premiums-car-insurers-court-victory-legal-fees.html
  13. But he rules out Mansion Tax http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-19864056
  14. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-19864056
  15. Martin Wheatley announces proposals to beef up 'broken' interest rate setting system. City dealers who rig Libor should face criminal charges, the head of the review into reforming the benchmark interest rate will say on Friday as he announces proposals to beef up regulation of the "broken" rate-setting system. Martin Wheatley, a senior regulator at the Financial Services Authority, will also stress that other institutions face similar punishments to those handed out to Barclays, which was fined £290m for its attempts to manipulate the rate used to set borrowing costs for companies and households around the world. He will recommend that the FSA should regulate the Libor system. But while he will say that Libor can be preserved, he will also call for an international discussion about alternative benchmarks. Libor – the London interbank offered rate – represents the prices banks pay to borrow from each other. It is set by a panel of banks asked the prices at which they expect to borrow over 15 periods, from overnight to 12 months, in 10 currencies. The rates the banks submit are published on the same day Wheatley is proposing that those 150 benchmark rates be reduced to just 20 – in five currencies and four maturities. He says more banks should participate in making submissions – but he is proposing that the individual rates submitted should not be published for three months, to avoid a rerun of 2008 when, at the height of the banking crisis, rates were artificially reduced to avoid any stigma of appearing to be in trouble. The managers of the so-called submitters should be subjected to direct authorisation by the FSA, he will say, and a code of conduct drawn up for the operation of the rates. His hasty six-week review was sparked by the Barclays scandal which eventually led to the departure of chief executive Bob Diamond. The firms involved in Libor were regulated but not the market itself, so he will call for the law to be changed to make it offence to "make a false or misleading statement" to manipulate Libor. "This would enable the FSA to use criminal powers for the worst cases of attempted manipulation," Wheatley will tell a City audience as he publishes his review. Wheatley, who is to head the Financial Conduct Authority when it is spun out of the FSA next year, will also attack the previous "careless" way in which the rate-setting process was overseen by the British Bankers' Association, which will be stripped of any further involvement. A tender process will be started on Friday for a new body to oversee Libor in a process that will be supervised by Baroness Hogg . He will call on the banks involved to "stand up and take responsibility" too. "The reason we are here … is that we have been misled. The system is broken and needs a complete overhaul. The disturbing events we have uncovered in the manipulation of Libor have severely damaged our confidence and our trust – it has torn the very fabric that our financial system is built on," Wheatley will say. "Governance of Libor has completely failed, resulting in the sort of shameful behaviour that we have seen. This problem has been exacerbated by a lack of regulation and a comprehensive mechanism to punish those who manipulate the system." Link: http://www.guardian.co.uk/business/2012/sep/28/rigging-libor-banks-criminal-offence
  16. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/money/markets/article-2196843/Nick-Cleggs-shift-Heathrow-flights-break-EU-law.html The UK is one of the only countries who have Major airports so close to city centres. I think there is a good arguement to increase capacity at airports like Luton.
  17. Banks and energy firms including HSBC, Royal Bank of Scotland and Scottish Power are forcing their customers to use expensive premium phone lines to speak to them, while potential new customers are offered free 0800 phone lines, research by Which? has found. The consumer group said that 27 of the 34 banks, energy companies and insurers that it investigated are luring potential new customers with free phone numbers while existing customers have to pay up to £8 for a 20 minute call on an 0845, 0870 or 0871 number. Further, Which? found that 20 of the companies make their customers call premium numbers to make formal complaints about bad service or problems with their bills. Richard Lloyd, executive director at Which?, said: “It is unbelievable that companies would add insult to injury by charging their customers a premium to make a complaint. It's even worse when they offer new customers access to 0800 numbers while leaving loyal customers to pay more.” Which? Is calling for greater transparency and easy-to-understand information about what calls cost. An HSBC spokesman said that it offers “multiple ways” for its customers to contact it, including via email or online, and that it always tries to keep costs of phone calls low for its customers. Link: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/personalfinance/consumertips/household-bills/9344404/Banks-and-energy-firms-force-customers-to-use-premium-phone-lines-Which-says.html
  18. Hello all, Totally new to your wonderful forums, what a wonderful find. I am not very good at computers or the web so speak slowly like your talking to a child I won't mind LOL. I really am a Dizzy person
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