July 2012 Noteworthy News
Let’s start with what we Brits seem to like talking about instead of leaving it until the end as an …and finally…. the weather - June was the wettest on record, ‘Nuff said! Although water restrictions have been lifted, some farmers, such as apple growers in Sussex might be counting the cost of their crops being dampened whilst some strawberry growers claim its all come to good, others with PYO are counting the cost and the damp conditions have driven bee colonies to struggle with near starvation. Summer clothing sales started early because of subdued sales but the sale of waterproofs is up.
The MPC (Monetary Policy Committee) meeting this month is anticipated to be bringing out QE (quantitative easing) in response to latest economic indicators and at the recent FSA’s Annual Public Meeting chairman Lord Turner described the Libor scandal `column inch filler‘, as a huge blow to the reputation of the banking industry.
Banking activity is set to create an even huger blow over the next few weeks as the Libor scandal unfolds with BoE Deputy Paul Tucker being cited by one scuffed Diamond Bob, as involved in rate rigging actions. The current Banking scandal takes over from NatWest’s meltdown. CEO Hester has agreed to forgo his £963,000 bonus this year because of the chaos following the computer glitch which has raised fears that customers may have had their credit ratings unwittingly blotted, corporate hospitality at Wimbledon was scrapped and duplicate mortgage payments mistakenly taken from some customers have achieved an I’m sorry from RBS, as they promised no one would be left out of pocket….. Interest rate swapping by RBS, Lloyds, Barclays and HSBC as reviewed by the regulator had all four British banks on the naughty-chair and forced to compensate their customers caught up in the mis-selling of complex derivatives; which were supposed to protect them if interest rates rose…..
A year down the line from nationalised Northern Rock’s potential sale making its way into the news, sale done, it’s still hanging around the financial headlines as the CEO of the FSA claims he recommended Lloyds TSB be granted a loan from the BofE to facilitate a takeover which could have changed the general climate, but, Governor Mervyn King he said …NO!.. Lloyds preferred bidder for their Verde sale remains to be The Co-Op , while Moodys’ is about to place a downgrade on Santander which would remove any parental support from Banco Santander.
London Borough, Southwark Council, is set to be the first UK local authority to impose a rent cap for private landlords who accept housing benefit tenants - There are 30,000 private rental properties in Southwark, of which 5,340 currently accept LHA tenants. Newham council’s plan, to become the first borough in the country to licence all private landlords, has attracted criticism from the NLA (National Landlords Association). Due to come into force 1 January 2013, some 35,000 private tenancies will be affected. The NLA has said…..such drastic proposals will….only increase the burdens on those who already comply with the law, without having any bearing on those who blatantly ignore it. Private landlords will pay £150 for a five year licence if they register before 1 January, 2013, otherwise the full fee is £500. Landlords who fail to license face fines of up to £20,000. Shelter responded with `We urge other local councils to follow Newham’s lead in sending a clear signal that enforcing the law against rogue landlords is a priority’.
And Finally…. The Weather…. It’s still raining. ‘Nuff said….
Image and Article credit: Copyright SUF 2012