Financial Services UK

  • April 11, 2024

    SocGen To Sell Equipment Finance Unit To Rival For €1.1B

    French banking giant Societe Generale SA said Thursday that it has agreed to sell its professional equipment financing business to rival BPCE for €1.1 billion ($1.2 billion) to streamline the business and bolster its equity capital.

  • April 11, 2024

    Squire Patton Steers £130M Mitsubishi Pension Deal

    Insurer Just Group said Thursday it has signed off on a £130 million ($163 million) buy-in transaction for a scheme sponsored by Mitsubishi Chemical UK Ltd. in a deal guided by Squire Patton Boggs LLP.

  • April 11, 2024

    FCA Finds Failings By Administrator Of Woodford Funds

    The Financial Conduct Authority said Thursday it has found that Link Fund Solutions failed to act with "due skill, care and diligence" when it was the authorized manager of the failed £3.7 billion ($4.6 billion) flagship fund managed by Neil Woodford.

  • April 10, 2024

    No Merit To Autonomy Whistleblower Claims, Auditor Says

    A Deloitte partner testifying in a California criminal trial over claims that former Autonomy CEO Michael Lynch and finance director Stephen Chamberlain duped HP into buying the British tech company for $11.7 billion said Wednesday that auditors concluded that whistleblower allegations by a finance department executive were meritless.

  • April 10, 2024

    Italian Airline Chairman Sued For €50M Over Joint Venture

    The chairman of Aeroitalia SRL has allegedly blocked aviation magnate German Efromovich from controlling the startup Italian airline by refusing to hand over his majority stake in the project, according to a new London claim seeking €50 million ($54 million).

  • April 10, 2024

    Ex-BigLaw Atty In OneCoin Scam A Flight Risk, Feds Say

    A former Locke Lord LLP partner who was convicted of laundering proceeds from the OneCoin cryptocurrency scam has "every incentive" to flee the country, prosecutors told a New York federal judge, arguing he shouldn't be allowed to stay out on bail while his appeal is pending.

  • April 10, 2024

    Ex-Footballer Sues HSBC For £2M Loan Negligence

    Former professional soccer player Matthew Jansen has claimed HSBC lost him almost £2 million ($2.5 million) during the 2008 financial crisis by allegedly failing to monitor the risk of loans secured against properties.

  • April 10, 2024

    Insurer Aviva Expands Bulk Purchase Pilot For Small Pensions

    Insurance giant Aviva said Wednesday it has launched a streamlined bulk purchase annuity service to support smaller pension schemes with assets of less than £100 million ($126 million) to de-risk their plans.

  • April 10, 2024

    PCAOB Fines KPMG, Deloitte Units $27M For Cheating Claims

    KPMG Netherlands and two Deloitte units will pay a combined $27 million to settle allegations from the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board of widespread answer sharing in their internal training programs, with KPMG's $25 million penalty marking the largest fine PCAOB has ever imposed.

  • April 10, 2024

    UK Reports £612M Lost To Investment Fraud Last Year

    Cryptocurrency scams accounted for the bulk of investment fraud cases that cost U.K. investors more than £612 million ($771 million) in 2023, according to crime data service Action Fraud.

  • April 10, 2024

    Swiss To Beef Up Banking Rules After Credit Suisse Rescue

    The Swiss government said Wednesday that it plans to beef up rules for its largest domestic lenders, including giving its financial watchdog an expanded toolkit after the near-collapse of Credit Suisse revealed holes in the current regime.

  • April 10, 2024

    Compensation For Poor Pensions Advice At Record Low

    Compensation for retirement savers who were wrongly advised to transfer out of their defined benefit pension has hit a record low, a consultancy said on Wednesday.

  • April 10, 2024

    EU Bank Rescue Agency Overcharged Institutions By €3.7B

    A European Union court ruled Wednesday that the eurozone's rescue agency for financial institutions overcharged for contributions to its safety net fund by almost €3.7 billion ($4 billion) but has given the authority at least six months until it has to repay.

  • April 10, 2024

    FCA Eyes Revisions To Payments For Investment Research

    The Financial Conduct Authority on Wednesday said it plans to revise how asset managers pay for investment research, seeking to simplify and expand access across the sector.

  • April 10, 2024

    Fraudsters Behind £50M Benefits Scam Get Sentencing Date

    Five Bulgarians who pleaded guilty to fraud and money laundering have been convicted at a London criminal court, the European Agency for Criminal Justice Cooperation said Wednesday, a crime the agency described as the largest benefits fraud to have hit the U.K.

  • April 10, 2024

    Lifeboat Fund Opens Probe Into British Steel Pension Adviser

    The compensation program for financial services said it has opened an investigation into an advice firm in connection with the British Steel Pension Scheme scandal.

  • April 10, 2024

    EY Law Helps Alisa Bank Merge With Fintech In €10.4M Deal

    Finnish digital lender Alisa Bank PLC said it plans to merge with PURO Finance Ltd. in a deal that values the invoice financing company at €10.4 million ($11.3 million).

  • April 10, 2024

    FCA Records Decline In Households In Financial Difficulty

    The number of households in financial difficulty tumbled by 38% in the 12 months to January, the finance watchdog said Wednesday, adding that more than seven million people were struggling to pay bills and credit repayments compared with almost 11 million a year earlier.

  • April 10, 2024

    Russian Tycoons Win Initial Fight Over EU Sanctions

    Russian businessmen Mikhail Fridman and Petr Aven have beaten the initial European sanctions imposed against them as a European Union court ruled Wednesday that they were unjustifiable, although their assets will continue to be restrained under newer measures.

  • April 09, 2024

    'You're Going To Lose These People,' Judge Tells Lynch Atty

    U.S. District Judge Charles Breyer on Tuesday chided a Steptoe partner representing former Autonomy CEO Michael Lynch in his criminal fraud jury trial, saying that his hourslong questioning of a Deloitte partner shouldn't go on much longer, or "you're going to lose these people."

  • April 09, 2024

    Pension Scheme End-Game Options Rising, Consultancy Says

    A rise in funding means U.K pension schemes have more end-game options, consultancy Broadstone said Tuesday, as the aggregate surplus of thousands of defined benefit schemes increased to £455.5 billion ($578.4 billion) by the end of March.

  • April 09, 2024

    Labour Party Pledges £5.1B Tax Crackdown If Elected

    Britain's opposition Labour Party pledged Tuesday to raise £5.1 billion ($6.5 billion) by closing tax loopholes and cracking down on tax avoidance schemes if it wins the next election, expected later this year.

  • April 09, 2024

    Gov't Urged To Ban Cash Incentives For Pension Switching

    The government should ban pension providers from offering cash incentives for savers to switch plans because the practice encourages people to ignore the "fine print" and move over to a worse option, new research by a provider of retirement savings plans suggests.

  • April 09, 2024

    HSBC To Take $1B Hit From Sale Of Argentina Unit

    HSBC said Tuesday that it will book a $1 billion loss on the sale of its business in Argentina to local lender Grupo Financiero Galicia, as the London-based bank continues to shift its focus to Asia.

  • April 16, 2024

    Charles Russell Speechlys Hires Banking And Finance Lawyer

    Charles Russell Speechlys LLP has appointed Philip Withey, a lawyer from Womble Bond, as partner in its banking and finance practice in a move the firm believes will boost its business.

Expert Analysis

  • Why Investment In Battery Supply Chain Is Important For UK

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    The recently published U.K. battery strategy sets out the government’s vision for a globally competitive battery supply chain, and it is critical that the U.K. secures investment to maximize opportunities for economic prosperity and net-zero transition, say lawyers at Watson Farley & Williams.

  • What Extending Corporate Liability Will Mean For Foreign Cos.

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    Certain sections of the Economic Crime Act enacted in December 2023 make it easier to prosecute companies for economic crimes committed abroad, and organizations need to consider their exposure and the new ways they can be held liable for the actions of their personnel, say Dan Hudson at Seladore Legal and Christopher Coltart at 2 Hare Court.

  • A Consequential Moment For Sanctions Activity

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    It is clear from the U.K. Office of Financial Sanctions Implementation's review of the 2022-2023 financial year that the unprecedented scale of designated persons and the value of assets frozen as a result has placed enormous pressure on OFSI and its partners, say lawyers at Greenberg Traurig.

  • ECJ Ruling Triggers Reconsiderations Of Using AI In Hiring

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    A recent European Court of Justice ruling, clarifying that the General Data Protection Regulation could apply to decisions made by artificial intelligence, serves as a warning to employers, as the use of AI in recruitment may lead to more discrimination claims, say Dino Wilkinson and James Major at Clyde & Co.

  • Economic Crime Act Offers Welcome Reform To AML Regime

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    The Economic Crime and Corporate Transparency Act exemption for mixed-property transactions that came into force on Jan. 15 as part of the U.K.'s anti-money laundering regime is long overdue, and should end economic harm to businesses, giving banks confidence to adopt a more pragmatic approach, say Matthew Getz and Joseph Fox-Davies at Pallas Partners.

  • 3 Financial Services Hot Topics To Watch In 2024

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    Technology, ESG and private markets are set to have the greatest impact on financial markets in 2024, as firms grapple with increasing regulatory change and a shifting political backdrop on both sides of the Atlantic, says Matthew Allen at Eversheds Sutherland.

  • What Venice Swaps Ruling Says About Foreign Law Disputes

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    The English appeals court's decision in Banca Intesa v. Venice that the English law swaps are valid and enforceable will be welcomed by banks, and it provides valuable commentary on the English courts' approach toward the interpretation of foreign law, say Harriet Campbell and Richard Marshall at Penningtons Manches.

  • Key Litigation Funding Rulings Will Drive Reform In 2024

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    Ground-breaking judgments on disputes funding and fee arrangements from 2023 — including that litigation funding agreements could be damages-based agreements, rendering them unenforceable — will bring legislative changes in 2024, which could have a substantial impact on litigation risk for several sectors, say Verity Jackson-Grant and David Bridge at Simmons & Simmons.

  • How Draft Trading Regs Provide Framework For UK Regime

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    Representing an important part of the U.K. government's post-Brexit regulatory reform agenda, the most recent draft of the proposed Trading Regulations seeks to provide a framework for a new rules-based regime for regulating public offers of securities and admissions to trading on a U.K.-regulated market, say lawyers at Davis Polk.

  • Breaking Down The New Rules For High Net Worth Individuals

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    Andrew Northage at Walker Morris outlines what businesses need to be aware of to ensure ongoing compliance with revised conditions in the U.K. government's updated financial promotion exemptions for high net worth individuals and sophisticated investors, and suggests a few practical tips for businesses to follow.

  • How Data Privacy Law Cases Are Evolving In UK, EU And US

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    To see where the law is heading in 2024, it is worth looking at privacy litigation and enforcement trends from last year, where we saw a focus on General Data Protection Regulation regulatory enforcement actions in the U.K. and EU, and class actions brought by private plaintiffs in the U.S., say lawyers at Morgan Lewis.

  • Misleading Airline Ads Offer Lessons To Avoid Greenwashing

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    Following the Advertising Standards Authority's recent decision that three airlines' adverts misled customers about their environmental impact, companies should ensure that their green claims comply with legal standards to avoid risking reputational damage, which could have financial repercussions, say Elaina Bailes and Olivia Shaw at Stewarts.

  • An Overview Of UK Short Selling Regulation Reforms

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    The steps taken by the U.K. government to reform the short selling regime show a thoughtful and considered approach and a willingness to listen to industry feedback in adapting the legacy EU regime to the realities of the U.K. markets, say Anna Maleva-Otto and Matthew Dow at Schulte Roth.

  • Supreme Court Ruling Is A Gift To Insolvency Practitioners

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    As corporate criminal liability is in sharp focus, the Supreme Court's recent decision in Palmer v. Northern Derbyshire Magistrates' Court that administrators are not company officers and should not be held liable under U.K. labor law is instructive in focusing on the substance and not merely the title of a person's role within a company, say lawyers at Greenberg Traurig.

  • What Can Be Learned From Adobe-Figma Merger Termination

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    The Competition and Markets Authority’s role in the recent termination of the proposed Adobe-Figma merger deal indicates the regulator's intention to be seen as a strong enforcer in the technology sphere, and serves as a warning for companies to address antitrust risks early on in the merger process, say Deirdre Taylor and Molly Heslop at Gibson Dunn.

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