Regulations and Law

ShareSoc+UKSA make joint response to HM Treasury consultation ‘Regulatory Framework for Approval of Financial Promotions’

Peter Parry, ShareSoc member and former Policy Director at the UK Shareholders Association writes about the joint submission by the UK Shareholders Association and ShareSoc to the HM Treasury consultation ‘Regulatory Framework for Approval of Financial Promotions' Financial promotions – a case study in how not to delegate. The Consultation Another day and another consultation lands in the inbox. This one’s from HM Treasury - titled ‘Regulatory Framework for Approval of Financial Promotions’. Sounds boring? Maybe, but the issue under review is actually a ...

Share Centre Future and FT Spoofing Article 

The Share Centre recently advised their customers of “Our Future with Interactive Investor”. It gave details of the transfer of accounts to the Interactive Investor platform following the acquisition of the Share Centre business. However they failed to point out one important point which customers need to be aware of. Share Centre ISAs are “Flexi ISAs”. This means that you can take cash out of the ISA and put it back in so long as you do it in the same tax ...

Regulating Consumer Investments and Company Register Reform

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) have launched a consultation on the Consumer Investment Market. They consider it a priority to reduce the harm that many consumers suffer from fraud in this sector. The FCA has this to say: “We have made significant improvements to this market to protect consumers. But there are over 5,000 financial adviser firms and more than 27,000 individual advisers acting as intermediaries between the consumer and their investment. Dominated by small firms, these complex chains of interdependent products ...

Delistings: Take the Money and Run

by Paul de Gruchy, Director, ShareSoc One of the aspects of investing that is rarely discussed, and yet often provokes ShareSoc members to approach us for help and advice, is what happens when a company is delisted. The LSE is a public company, and so is keen to increase revenues by listing as many companies as possible. But all too frequently companies list, raise money, and then for whatever reason, delist from the market. Shareholders are left with shares in a private company ...

Shenanigans in Siberia: the Petropavlovsk Saga and Why Retail Investors Matter

One of ShareSoc’s key beliefs is that private investors are important and their voice needs to be heard. The current, for want of a better word, shenanigans, at Petropavlovsk (POG) gives private investors a key role in determining the future of a company. Background Books could be written about POG, and probably deserve to be. It is a gold miner in Siberia, whose shares rose to above £5 in 2011, before collapsing under the weight of debt and being rescued by an emergency ...

Redcentric: Unprecedented Progress for Shareholders – At Last

Two Cheers for the FCA in the Case of Redcentric Two cheers for the FCA: they have achieved a positive outcome for shareholders affected by the case, and have been pragmatic, albeit after a very long time. It is also good to see the other objective of our campaign potentially achieved - of prosecuting individuals for their alleged misdemeanors. Such actions are essential to deter others from criminal activity. Background Redcentric has been an extraordinary case. They key issues at the time when serious ...

Electronic AGMs and Voting

Several companies in which I hold shares are proposing to adopt new Articles of Association at their Annual General Meetings. These typically are amended to enable the holding of “virtual”, i.e. electronic ones, or “hybrid” meetings where a physical venue (or multiple ones) are also used. They can do that legally at present under the emergency regulations put in place by the Government but they are clearly anticipating a more common use of such capabilities now that everyone is more practised ...

Learning Technologies and Ten Entertainment AGMs

I “attended” the on-line Annual General Meeting of Learning Technologies Group (LTG) today. Full members of ShareSoc can find my report on that meeting here: https://www.sharesoc.org/agm-reports/learning-technologies-agm-report-2020/ Another recent AGM of an AIM company was that of bowling alley operator Ten Entertainment (TEG) for which I hold all of 50 shares. I sold almost all my holding before they had to close all their venues. This was another company that did a placing recently but it is hardly surprising in this case that ...

Why the FCA Did Nothing About the Lloyds TSB Abuse

Those who were Lloyds TSB shareholders back in 2009 when they merged with HBOS to form Lloyds Banking Group (LLOY) thought it was bad deal at the time and it certainly turned out to be so. HBOS had many dubious loans to property companies and when the banking crisis arose they were in deep financial difficulty. There seemed very little benefit in the merger for Lloyds shareholders Subsequently a legal action was launched by the disgruntled Lloyds TSB shareholders which was lost ...

The New Corporate Insolvency and Governance Bill

The Government has introduced the Corporate Insolvency and Governance Bill into Parliament. This is quite an important piece of legislation for share investors and for property investors. Insolvency practitioners will also be interested as it makes substantial changes to that area. It’s had very little media coverage though as the news channels are swamped by coronavirus news, debate over Dominic Cummings breaking the lock-down (or not depending on your point of view) and Brexit news. The Bill is being “fast tracked” through ...