Last week I reported on the FSCS' decision to compensate only 159 London Capital & Finance bondholders.
The decision to compensate only those who transferred stocks & shares ISAs to LCF, and not those who transferred cash ISAs, over a technical interpretation of the compensation handbook, has been a particular point of controversy.
In November 2018 I reviewed Adelpha Capital which was offering bonds paying up to 7.6% per year via the company Adelpha Bond plc.
In June 2019 Adelpha Bond plc converted to a private Ltd company. It has now filed accounts up to October 2019 which appear to suggest it has taken no money in and made no trading activity; its accounts show nothing other than the £12,500 in paid share capital it was set up with.
The hopes of most victims of FCA-authorised Ponzi scheme London Capital & Finance were dashed last week when the FSCS announced it would not compensate them on the basis of having received misleading advice.
It said that investors had merely been given incorrect information, which doesn't generate a liability that is covered by the FSCS' "protected business" rules.
That the FSCS has eventually taken this decision is disappointing for investors but ultimately not surprising. London Capital Finance was not authorised to give advice to retail investors, employed no qualified financial advisers, and its call centre staff were generally trained to avoid crossing the line from information to advice - as in any other non-advisory finance company. (Although some went off-piste and crossed the line into the "I'd tell my own mother to invest in this" school of advice.)
Troubled minibond provider Blackmore hit the news again over the Christmas period after missing a third consecutive interest payment and falling overdue with its annual accounts.
Rather than regurgitate the last two articles, we’ll examine the important issues in depth.
Q: Why has Blackmore stopped paying interest?
A: Blackmore has defaulted on three quarterly interest payments, starting in August. August’s was eventually paid a week late; Blackmore blamed a clerical error.
September and December’s payments remain unpaid. Blackmore has now blamed Brexit and delays in selling property.
Unregulated German property scheme Dolphin Trust (now known as German Property Group; for clarity we will continue to use its less unnecessarily generic name) continues to struggle with repayments, according to media reports.
Wealth Options Trustees, an "investment wholesaler" based in Kildare, Ireland, has threatened to foreclose (presumably on behalf of Irish pension investors) in the event of non-payment.
Dolphin Trust's CEO Charles Smethurst has admitted to "short-term cash-flow difficulties" according to WOT.
Dolphin Trust's short-term difficulties started in the latter half of 2018, according to unpaid investors who spoke to the BBC last year.
Global Edge (a trading name of UK Innovative TI Ltd) offers unregulated bonds paying interest for a three year term as follows:
- 12.5%pa for investments between £2k and £25k
- 16.5%pa between £25k and £50k
- 18.5%pa between £50k and £75k
- 21%pa above £75k
Funds raised are to be used to gamble on various sports. Global Edge claims to have "advanced algorithmic technology" which identifies when bookmakers have priced their odds incorrectly and a platform which automatically bets on market where it has an edge.
Continue reading for a review of Global Edge's bonds.
According to the Lancashire Telegraph, the Official Receiver has sold the freehold, associated assets and goodwill of Store First's 15 storage centres to Store First Freeholds Limited.
The assets of the service company, SFM Services, have been transferred to Pay Store Limited.
Both Store First Freeholds Limited and Pay Store Limited are wholly owned by Jennifer Whittaker, reportedly the wife of Store First CEO Toby Whittaker.