Bank House Investment Management, a UK advice firm, received a fine of £311,639, while Financial Page & Henderson Carter Associates were hit with public censure by the FCA.
Additionally, another two collapsed advice firms, as well as their former directors, received Financial Conduct Authority fines for the part they played in pension transfers and investment switches that resulted in £26.9m in payouts by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme.
Five specific individuals from these advice firms were also fined and given prohibitions. Andrew Page, director of Financial Page, was given a ban and a penalty of £321,033. Thomas Ward, who according to the FCA acted as an ‘unapproved director’ of Financial Page, also received a ban and a fine of £416,558.
Furthermore, Aiden Henderson, Henderson Carter Associates’ director, received his own ban and £179,179 penalty. Two directors of Bank House Investment Management, Robert Ward and Tristan Freer, received bans and respective penalties of £88,100 and £52,725.
All of the individuals are looking to challenge the FCA’s findings at tribunal.
The FCA stated that the firms created a ‘pension review and advice process’ which involved outsourcing many of their important functions over to unregulated third parties, namely Hennessy Jones and City Administration. It is worth noting that the regulator made no current allegations of wrongdoing against either Hennessy Jones or City Administration.
The FCA statement read ‘Henderson Carter Associates, Financial Page and Bank House Investment Management held themselves out to customers as providing bespoke independent investment advice based on a comprehensive and fair analysis of the whole market, but that did not reflect the reality of the service that was provided. In reality, customers were recommended pension switches and pension transfers to products that invested in high risk, illiquid assets.’
‘In total, 2,004 customers invested approximately £76m of their pension assets. As at 29 January 2019, the FSCS has paid compensation of £26.8m to 1,106 customers of Henderson Carter Associates, Financial Page and Bank House Investment Management in relation to the above matter and is investigating further claims.’
Here at Pension Justice, we advise clients who have suffered from bad or incorrect pension transfer advice, including this type of high risk pension transfer guidance. We have helped our clients claim back over £3m collectively, so if you believe you may have a claim, get in touch with our team today by phone on 0800 014 8275, email on firstname.lastname@example.org, or by contact form over at our Contact page.