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Life assurance latest : Prudential, Resolution, RSA, Aviva, Gartmore

17/08/2010 - Company Reports, Endowments - 0 Comments - 440 words


Insurance firm Resolution intends to continue on the acquisition trail amonst insurance and life assurance companies and indicated that it hopes to add further businesses to its portfolio by the end of 2011.

Resolution bought the AXA UK life assurance business in June for £2.75bn and Friends Provident last year for £1.9bn and indicated that it would like add an asset management capability to its portfolio.

Resolution reported an operating profit of £203m after a £7m loss a year ago as new business profits jumped 153% at Friends Provident. Shareholder cash resources remained around £605m from £510m at the end of 2009.

Resolution added “the results reflect strong performances at Friends Provident International and Lombard while the UK continued to face difficulties, notably in the UK individual protection market. The UK results serve to reinforce the case for consolidation.”

Meanwhile, fund manager Gartmore have reported a 146% improvement in interim earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation although net sales came in below expectations.

Reflecting stock market investor dash for safety during the credit crunch Gartmore indicated that assets under management at end June were down at £19.9bn from £22.2bn previously. Gartmore earnings before deductions were £38.8m in first half, up from £15.8m at the interim stage of 2009.

Chief executive officer, Jeffrey Meyer added “We are focused on regaining momentum and believe we are attractively positioned to benefit from the continuing demand for absolute return products and the general growth potential of our UK Retail business." The group did not declare a dividend.

After Aviva rejected a £5bn bid interest from RSA last week, in companies general insurance businesses in the UK, Ireland and Canada. RSA has again made it clear that it believes a tie-up would make “strong strategic sense”.

Aviva, previously Norwich Union remains opposed to disinvesting its general and life insurance units and indicated that "highest value to shareholders will be delivered by retaining these businesses within the group”.

Pru chief executive Tidjane Thiam and chairman Harvey McGrath have thus far survived shareholders dissatisfaction after Prudential failed bid for AIG Asian Businesses - AIA cost company £380m in fees.

The Pru reported last week that Asia was a driving force behind a big increase in first half profit as the giant life assurance company remains confident of momentum being sustained for the rest of 2010.

Pru's operating profit before tax on European Embedded Value EEV basis rose 34% to £1.68bn in the six months to end June as new business profit came in 27% up at £892m and IFRS operating profit was 41% to £968m.



Latest life assurance company reports : Legal & General, Aviva, RSA Insurance Group

05/08/2010 - Company Reports, Endowments - 2 Comments - 534 words


UK second-biggest insurer Aviva has beaten analysts expectations reporting that first-half profit rose 21 percent as the life assurer indicated a consumer return to long-term savings products.

Operating profit rose to £1.27bn beating expectation of £1.17bn as net income rose to £1.08bn from £675mn a year earlier. Chief Executive Officer Andrew Moss added that Aviva “remains alert to the macroeconomic environment and risks in financial markets.”

Aviva indicated that it is increasing sales of life and pension products in Europe and following its main competitors Legal & General Group and Standard Life, selling products with fewer guarantees in an effort to reduce the amount of reserve capital.

Aviva also confirmed that it is renewing its strategic partnership with Royal Bank of Scotland RBS in a new distribution agreement with Aviva where RBS’s distribution network will sell Aviva protection and selective pension products.

RSA Insurance Group have also reported today a ‘resilient’ interim performance against a difficult first half for the insurance industry as profit before tax came in virtually unchanged at £302m from £301m last year.

Insurance industry sales quotient, net written premiums were reported up 9% at £3.80bn from £3.49bn in a comparable period in the first half of 2009 while RSA's combined operating ratio also improved to 94.8% from 93.5%.

The interim dividend was increased by 7% to 3.12p from 2.92p a year ago as Andy Haste, chief executive officer of RSA commented that “As it stands today, we continue to expect to achieve a combined operating ratio of around 95% for the full year... we expect the UK to remain in positive territory for the remainder of 2010 with Emerging Markets to return to double digit growth in 2011.”

Life assurance giant Legal & General LGEN yesterday reported interim figures ahead of expectations despite profit coming £589m in the first half of 2010 but down from £656m previously reported in a comparable period.

The city will react well to the news since Panmure Gordon had a figure of £572m at the top of the range of its market forecast. L&G also indicated that it cash on account at the end of June at £3.3bn, presently ahead of the life insurers regulatory capital requirements. Company also increased the half year dividend to 1.33p from 1.11p.

Legal & General chief executive Tim Breedon added “We remain on track to generate at least £600m of net cash in 2010... ee are optimistic about growth prospects in UK savings and annuities, though there is little evidence of recovery in the UK housing market.”

Meanwhile, there is sign of life back in the TEP market. For those that wish to redeem the value an endowment policy early, it is best to seek a quote from traded endowment brokers who can offer improvement over the life policy surrender value.

The market has recently been supressed with margins squeezed by the low interest environment of the last 18 months. However, TEP's or traded endowment policy surrender values appear to be back on the increase after experiencing a couple of years of stagnation, according to leading TEP brokers.

Click for more info Traded Endowments



Mortgage holders cheered as margins improve in traded endowment market

24/06/2010 - Endowments - 0 Comments - 257 words


Traded Endowment Policies : There exists a way to sell second hand with-profits life assurance policies in which traded endowment brokers find best deals from purchasing market makers.

The point is that the redemption value of old endowment policies mid-term is usually below expectation whilst there are investors who wish to buy old policies which can be transferred between holders and kept running under new ownership until maturity.

Life policy holders have an option to trade policies in before the end of the contract and the policy holders can get improved offers for the policy they hold via competitive bids from the TEP brokers - traded endowment brokers.

This facility of use to home buyers and sellers who need to change their mortgage as they sell and rebuy new homes.

The market has recently been supressed with margins squeezed by the low interest environment of the last 18 months. Brokers have been unable to offer enough margin to warrant trades taking place.

However, TEP's or traded endowment policy surrender values appear to be back on the increase after experiencing a couple of years of stagnation, according to leading TEP brokers.

Now is the time again to try to get increased value your old endowment. The worst you can do with an old policy is usual to simply surrender it back to the original life company to obtain redemption value. But thats what the TEP brokers can do for you - to evaluate your policy and make an improved offer.

More info....
Traded endowment policies step through



Dont surrender old with-profits savings plans, trade endowments on the TEP market

04/06/2010 - Endowments - 0 Comments - 293 words


Traded Endowment Policies

Due to high charges by life assurance companies for early surrender endowment policies there exists a market for second hand with-profits policies in which traded endowment brokers find best deals from purchasing market makers.

Those that hold and wish to sell endowment policies have the option to trade policies in before the end of the contract. Policy holders are able to get improved offers for the policy they hold via competitive bids from the TEP brokers - traded endowment brokers.

Via a broker, TEP market makers, (traded endowment market makers) will assess the value of your endowment - the endowment surrender value. Then, if you decide to cash in endowment policy, the market maker takes on the monthly payments until the policy matures or they resell to another individual on the open market.

People who are changing their mortgage, going through divorce, need more capital or who predict a fall in the profit of their endowment may have a requirement to sell a with-profits endowment or life assurance policy.

Traded Endowment Policies or TEPs are second hand with-profits endowment policies legally assigned to new owners who pay the purchase price and take over the payment of future premiums. The life assurance cover remains on the original life/lives assured, but all policy benefits on maturity or, an earlier life assurance payout, are the property of the new owner.

As TEPs are purchased mid-term the policy already has a guaranteed value made up of the 'Basic Sum Assured' and 'Bonuses Attaching' and the initial charges have all been paid by the original policyholder.

For more information on cashing in endowment policies check ukcitymedia pages. There is a link to the traded endowments section in the left nav bar, at the bottom of the home page.



Life insurance giant Prudential pulls plans to buy AIG Asian : AIA

02/06/2010 - Company Reports, Endowments - 0 Comments - 189 words


Prudential, who scrapped plans to buy AIG's Asian arm AIA last week, are under pressure from institutional shareholders to make changes on the board. The papers are hinting today that chairman Harvey McGrath and chief executive Tidjane Thiam could end up moving on after the proposal fell apart.

Chairman Harvey McGrath indicated that the board withdraw its interest after failing to negotiate a reduction to the $35.5bn price tag for AIA. Correspondingly, the Pru's plans for a $21bn right issue will now also be scrapped.

AIG rejected the Pru's revised proposal last wednesday in which the offer price was cut from $35.5bn to $30.75bn. AIG chief executive Robert Benmosche agreed in principle to the revised terms, however the rest of the board voted 10-2 against. AIG will now revive its earlier intention for a partial listing of AIA on Hong Kong stock exchange.

Prudential could now faces penalties as well as costs associated with the deal. Break fees of £153m will will be applicable whilst the Pru can also expect to pick up the considerable tab for underwriting, advisory and other fees likely to be close to £300m.



Traded endowment margins improve for life policy holders who seek higher returns

06/04/2010 - Endowments - 0 Comments - 337 words


Those wishing to redeem an old endowment by trading into the resale market have found margins squeezed by the low interest environment of the last 18 months. Brokers have been unable to offer enough margin to warrant trades taking place.

However, TEP's or Traded endowment policy surrender values appear to be back on the increase after experiencing a couple of years of stagnation, according to leading TEP brokers.

The FT published a review recently indicating that policy surrender values in 2008 and 2009 were undoubtedly affected by the global recession with life companies adopting a defensive position against low interest rate, however values have started to recover.

Integrity Reviews Ltd, who conducted a study in endowment resale, indicated that it had monitored Tep surrender value movements and that brokers were once again offering positive surrender values ranging between 2 per cent and 10 per cent.

Iain Stamp, chief executive of Integrity, said: "Value increases may not yet fully compensate for the previous reductions applied to Tep based portfolios however, the green shoots of recovery seen in the global marketplace are now filtering through to the Tep market.

This good news for many endowment holders. Holders of with-profits policies, Life Assurance policies. Often, endowment policies that have been issued to accompany a mortgage arrangement and are no long required as holders move house or change circumstance.

Endowment holders may sell a policy into the market rather than to just surrender the policy back to the original issuing life assurance company or endowment provider. Traded endowment policy brokers act buy and offering improved margin and then sell on to buyers who wish to take on a mid-term policy as an investment option.

With margins improving, those wishing to sell in to the market rather than just surrender the policy back to the life company look as they they will, again be able to achieve higher returns. Check ukcitymedia.co.uk homepage for a link to "Traded Endowments" in order to get further information.

Article originally posted on 31st March. Reposted after rectification of a technical problem.



Hold stocks, shares and traded endowments in an online SIPP pension plan.

05/04/2010 - Endowments, Stockmarket Trading - 0 Comments - 340 words


For those who wish to manage their own pension, SIPPs are well known to offer the flexibility for stock market investments, but its often overlooked that endowments and even traded endowments can form a useful base in low risk component - and they qualify to be held within a SIPP.

Despite the volatility of 2009 for the equity markets, investors continued to move towards opportunities with self-invested personal pension or 'SIPP' accounts.

AJ Bell, one of the biggest providers in this market, reported a 20% increase in the number of SIPP accounts set-up last year. The value of SIPP assets on its books grew 40% as investors looked to a possible market recovery.

Hargreaves Lansdown, the funds specialist ares now offering an online consolidated 'wrapper' for funds, stockbroking as well its traditional pensions services, reporting that its SIPP's business increased from £100 million to £3 billion in five years to mid 2009.

Qualifying investments for SIPP's include UK and international shares, gilts - government bonds, corporate bonds and exchange-traded funds, as well as a range of investment funds. Endowments and with-profits funds are hardly ever even mentioned in relation to SIPP's but they qualify, as indeed to Traded Endowments.

Info about TEP's - Traded Endowments.

Endowment holders may sell a policy into the market, where buyers are waiting - maybe to fund their SIPP. Rather than to just surrender the policy back to the original issuing life assurance company or endowment provider, the policy holder could get an improved premium.

Traded endowment policy brokers act to buy and may offer improved margin over the surrender value and then sell on to buyers who wish to take on a mid-term policy as an investment option.

Endowment policy holder could get improved rates on the surrended value by trading into the market and pension investors may be buyer of second hand endowment policies to hold with their SIPP.

This abbreviated article was posted as a system test. For further information on Traded Endowments and Pensions, check the links to 'Traded Endowments and Pensions' on ukcitymedia.co.uk home page.



Traded endowment margins improve for life policy holders who seek higher returns

03/04/2010 - Endowments - 0 Comments - 325 words



Those wishing to redeem an old endowment by trading into the resale market have found margins squeezed by the low interest environment of the last 18 months. Brokers have been unable to offer enough margin to warrant trades taking place.

However, TEP's or Traded endowment policy surrender values appear to be back on the increase after experiencing a couple of years of stagnation, according to leading TEP brokers.

The FT published a review recently indicating that policy surrender values in 2008 and 2009 were undoubtedly affected by the global recession with life companies adopting a defensive position against low interest rate, however values have started to recover.

Integrity Reviews Ltd, who conducted a study in endowment resale, indicated that it had monitored Tep surrender value movements and that brokers were once again offering positive surrender values ranging between 2 per cent and 10 per cent.

Iain Stamp, chief executive of Integrity, said: "Value increases may not yet fully compensate for the previous reductions applied to Tep based portfolios however, the green shoots of recovery seen in the global marketplace are now filtering through to the Tep market.

This good news for many endowment holders. Holders of with-profits policies, Life Assurance policies. Often, endowment policies that have been issued to accompany a mortgage arrangement and are no long required as holders move house or change circumstance.

Endowment holders may sell a policy into the market rather than to just surrender the policy back to the original issuing life assurance company or endowment provider. Traded endowment policy brokers act buy and offering improved margin and then sell on to buyers who wish to take on a mid-term policy as an investment option.

With margins improving, those wishing to sell in to the market rather than just surrender the policy back to the life company look as they they will, again be able to achieve higher returns. Check ukcitymedia.co.uk homepage for a link to "Traded Endowments" in order to get further information.





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