So Martin Wheatley is forgoing his bonus after a brief encounter in which the FCA “failed to appreciate the price-sensitive nature of information it was relaying?” (Financial Times.) David Cowell of Myddleton Croft Investment Managers isn’t impressed.  

Can someone tell me why it has cost us £4m to get the executive of the FCA to admit to a cock-up? Why should we have to pay it? Osborne has been quick enough to steal all the fines money so he can put some back – i.e. at least £4m.

myddleton croft


When quizzed by the Treasury Select Committee about the disparity in business investment predictions between the Office for Budget Resposibility and the Bank of England, OBR chairman Robert Chote stated that it was “like trying to pin a tail on a very fast moving donkey”. As Churchill might have said – some tail, some donkey. I always wondered what they did at OBR meetings – and now we know.

On the same vein, the SEC is considering stress-testing US asset managers. “The SEC is fearful widespread investor redemptions could drive down markets and destabilise the financial system….”, the WSJ reports. It appears that the SEC has just discovered what a market actually is – but it is comforting to know that they have finally got there, even if, like most governmental organisations, they think that they can legislate to prevent anything. Including snowstorms and plagues of locusts.

The Greek government’s decision to call snap Presidential elections with the Athens stock market falling by 12.8%, the largest one day fall since 1987. Greek borrowing costs also spiked. Greek stocks had another bad day yesterday, bringing the total decline in the Athens Stock Market to 20% in the past three days. Banks were hit particularly hard, while ten year borrowing costs rose to 9%.


Wall Street rebounded on Thursday as better-than-forecast data on retail sales and unemployment boosted confidence in the economy to overshadow a renewed sell-off in oil. The Dow Jones industrial average rose 63 points, or 0.36%, to 17,596, the S&P 500 gained nine points, or 0.45%, to 2,035 and the Nasdaq Composite added 24 points, or 0.52%, to 4,708. The  VIX, climbed 8.4 percent today after spiking 24 percent yesterday. The gauge has surged 70 percent in the past four days, the most since August 2011.

The Dubai stock market suffered the  biggest fall in five years. The plunging oil price has dragged the Dubai stock market down in its biggest one day fall since 2009.

Dalian Wanda Commercial Properties Co Ltd, the world’s second largest developer of shopping malls and office buildings, cut the size of its Hong Kong IPO by around a third to $3.9 billion to lure investors worried about its huge debt, analysts said. The company, backed by Chinese billionaire Wang Jianlin, launched the deal on Monday and offered 600 million new shares in a range of HK$41.80–HK$49.60 each, according to a term sheet seen by Reuters. It had earlier sought to raise as much as $6 billion. Analysts said the company cut the IPO after some buyers were put off by the 179.7 billion yuan ($29.2 billion) in bond and loan debt (50% higher than its peers) it had amassed during rapid expansion.


Royal Bank of Scotland Plc has launched the sale of private bank Coutts International and has invited at least 10 potential suitors, including Credit Suisse, Julius Baer and Malayan Banking Bhd to participate in an auction. The sale could fetch about $1 billion (641 million pounds) for RBS.

The Times reports that the cost per household of subsidising wind and solar farms and other sources of low-carbon electricity will double in five years and treble by 2030, according to the Government’s committee on climate change.

So, a sorry tale of woe all round, it would appear. Not so if you had little exposure, as we did.






Have a good weekend.

David Cowell

Director For and on behalf of Myddleton Croft Investment Managers


1 Woodside Mews

Clayton Wood Close

Leeds LS16 6QE

Tel:        0113 274 7700

Fax:       0113 274 7711

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