This blog gives you the latest topical news plus some informal comments on them from ShareSoc’s directors and other contributors. These are the personal comments of the authors and not necessarily the considered views of ShareSoc. The writers may hold shares in the companies mentioned. You can add your own comments on the blog posts, but note that ShareSoc reserves the right to remove or edit comments where they are inappropriate or defamatory.

Good news from Hargreaves Lansdown

Hargreaves Lansdown (HL) have issued a press release announcing changes to their Vantage service. It mentions that they “listen carefully to their feedback” from clients and invest heavily in improvements. Some of the latest changes that may be of particular interest to readers include the following (refer to the HL web site for the complete list) :

– Removal of the recently introduced corporate action fee including the charge for voting shares.

– Free live share prices.

– An on-line tax centre to help with tax returns.

– Customised log-out time-outs so you can make it longer than 15 minutes (let us hope other on-line stockbrokers copy that!).

and coming soon will be:

– A stock screening tool.

– Watch lists that will synchronise between PC, smartphone and iPhone Apps.

ShareSoc did of course complain publicly about the introduction of a fee of £10 to vote shares in an HL nominee account, and we did have a meeting with HL to discuss this and how to make it easier for investors to take up their rights. The latter remains to be tackled but the £10 charge was particularly obnoxious. It is good to see that HL have been listening to both ShareSoc and their clients.

Roger Lawson

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