Regulations and Law

Scrapping Share Certificates and Clive Sinclair Obituary

This article represents the views of its author and not necessarily those of ShareSoc The Government is to push ahead with the scrapping of paper share certificates. An announcement yesterday by Lord Frost included this in a bonfire of regulations which also included plans to scrap driving licences (i.e. making them digital only). The dematerialisation of shares was long ago committed to by an EU directive with no new paper certificates to be issued by 2023 and all existing ones replaced by ...

The Times , 23 August 2021, Ludicrous rules prevent TV educating viewers about stock markets, says Lord Lee

ShareSoc Patron Lord Lee is quoted in the The Times, 23 August 2021, in an article about the ludicrous rules that prevent TV from educating viewers about stock markets. Lord Lee is urging the government to look at financial and broadcasting regulations that effectively restrict mainstream television from producing valuable educational and informative programmes about investment. Lord Lee has tabled a parliamentary question.  “To ask Her Majesty’s Government whether they will meet (1) representatives of the major television channels, (2) the Financial Conduct Authority, and ...

KPMG fined again: but not the audit function this time!

This is a personal blog by Cliff Weight, ShareSoc Director and does not necessarily reflect the views of ShareSoc. This is so shocking that I am simply blogging the FRC announcement. My only comment is to highlight the glacial speed of such investigations. It has taken 10 years to get this far. The deterrent value of the £13 million fine would have had far more impact if the case had been concluded in two years! ShareSoc continues to lobby the FRC, FCA, ...

Changes to KIDs Proposed by the FCA

Yet another public consultation issued by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) in mid-summer is one on KIDs (Key Information Documents). This is relevant to private investors and is designated CP21/23 – see link below. KIDs are imposed and regulated under the PRIIPs regulation as devised by the EU for packaged investment products such as funds and trusts. KIDs give basic financial information, risk indicators and likely future performance based on past performance. Those who purchase investment trusts for example will be asked ...

FCA Primary Markets Effectiveness Review – would you like to contribute?

ShareSoc Blog by Cliff Weight, Director (Pronouns: He/his/his).   Please note these are my personal views and not necessarily those of ShareSoc. I have received the request below about a subject dear to my heart and hopefully of other members. If you are willing and wanting to contribute please contact us with your name and contact details and I will organise a meeting with the FCA about this. It is good news that the FCA is reaching out in this way to seek ...

FCA, AFMs, ACDs, High fees for inappropriate products, Closet indexers

By Cliff Weight, Director, ShareSoc. These are my personal views and do not necessarily reflect the views of ShareSoc. The FCA has published two reports in a week that highlight the historic failings of the fund management industry and are hugely critical. According to Wealth Manager "In a damning report, the watchdog said fund houses have failed to properly assess the value of their funds." see https://citywire.co.uk/wealth-manager/news/asset-managers-can-t-explain-why-funds-offer-value-fca-says/a1527497 It is a good report with many sensible suggestions. It should have been done 5 years ago immediately ...

ShareSoc Patron Lord Lee Parliamentary Question about Bacanora take-over

The background is that ShareSoc was approached by the Bacanora Lithium Shareholder Action Group which is being run by Dee Patel who asked for ShareSoc’s assistance. We have helped them in explaining some key issues in how to run a campaign, how to obtain the shareholder register, problems with voting nominee shares, etc. We also thought whether a takeover would be in the UK public interest issue. We drew this to the attention of ShareSoc Patron Lord Lee, who has now tabled ...

Woodford Claims and the Financial Ombudsman Service – Update 19 May

We (Boz Michalowska from Leigh Day and me) met with the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) on 7th May. They have received 549 claims so far relating to Woodford, Link, Hargreaves and IFAs. They have resolved 3 at final decision stage and these were simple cases against IFAs. We were given no evidence to suggest that the FOS route is likely to have a quick nor successful resolution. ShareSoc cannot give financial advice and individuals must of course make their own decisions. ShareSoc ...

AIM market statistics

by Cliff Weight, Sharesoc Director. Allenby have just published this very informative review of AIM: http://www.allenbycapital.com/research_1214_2120899233.pdf which contains many interesting statistics. The AIM market is at the same level it was 20 years ago, but the journey between has been very volatile. However the last 5 years, with the exception of last March's blip, has been most encouraging. It may be that fewer scandals than in the past have occurred. However ShareSoc is still campaigning hard to get better regulation of the AIM ...

Comparison of Woodford Claims

The Investors Chronicle have published on 30 March 2021 a useful table comparing the 4 ongoing Woodford Claims: (note, as at 10 June 2022, Leigh Day have >12,000 claimants and Harcus Parker c 7,500. ShareSoc do not know any more recent numbers for RGL and Slater & Gordon.) ShareSoc endorsed the Leigh Day Claim, in November 2020 on the basis of information available at that time. The table highlights that the Leigh Day claim and Harcus Parker claim are both against Link, both ...