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Apr 23, 2012

UBS banker wins appeal against FSA

LONDON (Reuters) – The national financial watchdog has lost a key test of its powers to punish bankers for alleged supervision failures when a fine on a senior UBS banker was overturned by a court.

In a rare successful appeal against a fine imposed by the regulator, John Pottage was cleared of misconduct by Britain’s Upper Tribunal over compliance failings that occurred under his supervision at UBS’s British wealth management business, which he ran.

Apr 23, 2012

UBS banker wins appeal against UK watchdog

LONDON (Reuters) – Britain’s financial watchdog has lost a key test of its powers to punish bankers for alleged supervision failures when a fine on a senior UBS banker was overturned by a court.

In a rare successful appeal against a fine imposed by the regulator, John Pottage was cleared of misconduct by Britain’s Upper Tribunal over compliance failings that occurred under his supervision at UBS’s British wealth management business, which he ran.

Apr 19, 2012

UK banks under investor fire over excessive pay

LONDON, April 19 (Reuters) – Unhappy investors warned
British banks to brace for a sell-off in their shares unless
there is real action to stamp out excessive pay and reverse
shrinking rewards for shareholders.

After years watching boardroom bonus and salary hikes
outpace growth in their returns, investors say they are growing
tired of unanswered calls for change, with some tempted to skip
another fruitless war of words to vote with their feet instead.

Apr 18, 2012

Spain fund firm blasts German profiteering on Europe

LONDON (Reuters) – Germany must accept its fate as the euro’s financial backstop or quit meddling in how indebted members revive their economies, one of Spain’s leading fund firms said, in remarks likely to stoke fears of a Mediterranean backlash against austerity.

José Luis Jiménez Guajardo-Fajardo, chief executive of March Gestion de Fondos, the asset management arm of Banca March, said he sometimes felt Germany had a vested interest in an unsettled Europe and was cashing in on bailout nerves.

Apr 13, 2012

SWIP axes funds staff in equities overhaul

LONDON, April 13 (Reuters) – Scottish Widows Investment
Partnership (SWIP), the asset management unit of Lloyds Banking
Group Plc, is cutting 23 jobs in a strategy shakeup
that aims to poach clients from hedge funds and providers of
cheap index-tracking products.

The 143 billion pound ($228.1 billion) funds firm has
unveiled a new equity investment strategy to prioritise winning
business at both extremes of the market – from investors chasing
high returns using sophisticated higher-risk funds and those
seeking predictable outcomes via computer-driven trading.

Apr 11, 2012

Investors run scared of Spain’s battered banks

LONDON (Reuters) – Spain’s banks are fast joining the ranks of the most unloved in Europe just as many need to raise capital urgently, deserted by investors who believe the country is on the brink of a recession that many lenders will not survive.

The government has ruled out more state aid for a sector that comprises a motley mix of international lenders and heavily indebted local savings banks. That leaves two options: raising private capital or turning to the EU for bailout funds.

Apr 11, 2012

Analysis: Investors run scared of Spain’s battered banks

LONDON (Reuters) – Spain’s banks are fast joining the ranks of the most unloved in Europe just as many need to raise capital urgently, deserted by investors who believe the country is on the brink of a recession that many lenders will not survive.

The government has ruled out more state aid for a sector that comprises a motley mix of international lenders and heavily indebted local savings banks. That leaves two options: raising private capital or turning to the EU for bailout funds.

Apr 3, 2012

Big European dividends make some shareholders wary

LONDON, April 3 (Reuters) – Many European companies are
gambling their long-term financial security with extravagant
dividends and buybacks, betting that banks will resume lending
before their cash runs out.

An increasing coincidence of dividend hikes and cautious
outlooks have made long term investors nervous about how easily
the companies they back will access, and pay for, capital
against a backdrop of economic unease in Europe.

Apr 2, 2012

Europe’s investors to feel pain of rising regulation costs

LONDON, April 2 (Reuters) – A raft of un-coordinated reforms
demanded by the United States, the European Union and Britain
threatens to shrink Europe’s investment industry to a handful of
huge players, denting a campaign for lower fund fees and
squeezing investor choice.

After surviving huge outflows triggered by the financial
crisis, fund managers are wrestling with a barrage of new rules
dictating how they attract, manage and earn money.

Mar 29, 2012

Investors pursue risk assets but worries mount – Reuters poll

LONDON (Reuters) – Investors are ramping up bets on equities as risk appetite thrives on abundant liquidity, a Reuters poll has found, but money managers are already wondering how markets will cope when the hangover from the latest debt binge finally hits.

The average exposure to equities in balanced portfolios according to a survey of 14 investment managers jumped 2.8 percentage points to 54.9 percent this month, the highest allocation to the asset class since February 2011.