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Fairstone adds West Midlands Planner to buy-out scheme

Chartered Financial Planning firm Fairstone has signed up the eighth firm this year to its buy-out programme – West Midlands-based Complete Financial Planning.

The new deal brings the total of funds under management added through Fairstone’s ‘Downstream Buy-out’ programme so far this year to more than £1.2bn.

Complete Financial Planning adds more than 1,600 clients, 11 advisers and 10 support staff to Fairstone, along with gross fee income of £1.5 million and funds under management of more than £140m.

Fairstone’s buy-out model typically sees firms on the integration scheme for two years before full acquisition.

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Complete Financial Planning is based in Hereford and specialises in pension planning and investment management.

Fairstone chief executive Lee Hartley said: “The team at Complete Financial Planning bring a first-class and efficient approach to their work, centred around building quality long-term client relationships, making them an excellent fit for Fairstone.”

Company principals at

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If companies don’t recruit from HBCUs, they’re missing out on promising employees

I shouldn’t have to say this, but I’ll say it anyway: My students have talent. As business school dean and accounting professor at South Carolina State University, a historically Black university, I believe in my students—even when it seems like many employers overlook them.

Attending a historically Black college or university comes with challenges that students at other institutions might not face, particularly a lack of funding and name recognition. Many recruiters seem to exclusively chase pupils from large state schools or well-known private schools. What they don’t realize is that they’re missing out on promising employees.

I have seen firsthand the effect that this can have on my student body. Many of them will not pursue certain careers simply because they don’t possess the confidence to compete. Their senses tell them that they are not prepared to make the transition from classroom to workplace.

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BP Hits 25-Year Low a Week After Unveiling Climate Strategy

(Bloomberg) — Just a week after revealing its plan to turn itself into a clean-energy giant, BP Plc watched its share price drop to a 25-year low.Chief Executive Officer Bernard Looney and his new management team gave more than 10 hours of presentations over three days last week, in a bid to show the world that the oil and gas giant could adapt to a low-carbon future without sacrificing returns.The company’s shares closed in London on Thursday at 232.4 pence, the lowest level since October 1995. While falling crude prices and fears of the second wave of the coronavirus haven’t help BP, the slide suggests shareholders weren’t convinced by Looney’s pitch.“Investors remain skeptical,” said Mirza Baig, Global Head of Governance at Aviva Investors. “Particularly as this move is being forced on the company by climate change.”Looney took over as CEO in February, but the so-called “BP Week” this month was … Read the rest

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FCA lambasts scam ads on Google and social media

FCA chairman Charles Randell has lambasted scam investment advertising on Google and social media.

He said it was an area that needed “urgent change.”

Mr Randell said many cheated investors were lured to invest via ads they had seen on Google and other search engines.

He said it was not just Google advertising that was the problem. The regulator had also recently come across scams being promoted on social media includingTwitter and Instagram and via online “influencers.”

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Mr Randell, in response to a question at the FCA’s Annual Meeting held online today, said it was wrong that scammers could post ads on Google and other search engines and social media and avoid the consequences.

Mr Randell said it was particularly annoying that the FCA had to pay Google to advertise scam warnings alongside the ads.

Mr Randell said the FCA was looking at what steps the regulator could

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Why the Supreme Court vacancy could spell bad news for the health care industry

The death of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg last week, at the age of 87, has sparked a massive political debate six weeks before the election—with President Trump, much to the dismay of congressional Democrats, set to announce his nominee to replace Ginsburg by the end of this week.

But there’s another, more apolitical group that may have reason to worry about Trump naming yet another conservative justice to the highest court in the land: the health care industry. On Nov. 10, one week after Election Day, the Supreme Court is set to begin hearing arguments in a case challenging the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), the landmark health care legislation also known as Obamacare.

With the departure of one of the court’s leading liberal voices, the future of the ACA is now increasingly uncertain—as are the revenues of U.S. health care providers who are now … Read the rest

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Oil Drops After Warnings on U.S. Economy and Global Crude Demand

(Bloomberg) — Oil dropped in London and New York following warnings over global energy demand and the state of the U.S. economy.Crude fell along with other risky assets after Federal Reserve officials said more fiscal stimulus is critical to sustain the U.S. recovery. In Europe, the head of commodity trader Mercuria Energy Group said global oil markets won’t be able to absorb OPEC+ production increases as demand is weaker than expected.Oil has lurched lower this month amid signs a resurgence in the coronavirus could lead to more lockdown measures, though the global Brent benchmark has bounced around near its 100-day moving average in recent days. The OPEC+ alliance, meanwhile, is slowly tapering its production cuts and Libya is unleashing fresh supply as its civil war abates.Crude declined Thursday even after U.S. crude and fuel stockpiles shrank, according to weekly data from the Energy Information Administration.“Downside risks remain much bigger than … Read the rest

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Intelliflo adds Open Banking to Financial Planning portal

Intelliflo has added Open Banking access to its fintech services to enable Financial Planners to have a better oversight of clients’ entire finances.

The fintech firm says Open Banking will give financial and mortgage advisers better understanding of their clients’ incomings and outgoings to “support Financial Planning.”

Open Banking – a system to share client banking information – will help with the accuracy of the fact find process, says Intelliflo, because planners will gain a full view of where clients’ money is held.

Three weeks since launching Open Banking, Intelliflo’s customers says they have already identified approximately £20m of ‘held away’ assets, the firm says.

Advisers’ clients can link their current accounts, credit cards and savings accounts to the Personal Finance Portal (PFP) to see their finances in one place and set monthly spending budgets.

Clients will be able to see transaction and account history of any account added, providing

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Scientists say a gap in COVID vaccine research may keep us from returning to ‘normal’

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When the first COVID-19 vaccines reach market, the world will not necessarily return to ‘normal,’ say top infectious disease experts.

In a new article for the Lancet medical journal, two University of Hong Kong researchers caution that even at the conclusion of phase III clinical trials, important questions will remain about how effective vaccines are in stopping viral transmission of COVID-19.

Gabriel Leung, an infectious disease epidemiologist, and Malik Peiris, a public health virologist, argue that even though multiple vaccine makers have reached phase III clinical trials at a record pace, scientists are currently only studying part of the equation in gauging how a vaccine may help bring an end to the global pandemic.

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Oil Rises With Equities Advancing and Citi Staying Bullish

(Bloomberg) — Oil edged higher as positive European manufacturing data and rising equity markets gave some respite to recent demand worries.Futures in New York for November delivery rose to over $40 a barrel. The German economy continues to recover thanks to stronger-than-expected manufacturing figures, data showed, while equity markets in Europe are also stronger. Citgroup Inc. said it remains bullish on the outlook for oil, though the market is undergoing a fitful rebalancing.The American Petroleum Institute reported crude stockpiles increased by nearly 700,000 barrels last week, while gasoline inventories shrunk by 7.7 million barrels, according to people familiar, ahead of government data later.After a partial recovery this month, oil prices are now back in the same range as during the northern hemisphere’s summer. With the demand outlook deteriorating in recent weeks, attention is now turning to the OPEC+ alliance and whether it will try to curb output further to rebalance … Read the rest

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Financial Planners can use new platform to fund growth

Regionally, the new SME investment venture chaired by 7IM founder Justin Urquhart Stewart, says Financial Planning firms could be the recipients of new investment via its platform.

In an exclusive interview, Mr Urquhart Stewart told Financial Planning Today that Financial Planning and wealth management firms could be among the firms that might receive new investment via Regionally.

Regionally is a platform to bring together investors and SME firms looking to scale up. It aims to invest in firms outside London but will avoid start-ups.

He said: “We are sector agnostic and are therefore very open to facilitating investment in financial services firms and Financial Planning businesses.

“If they fit the criteria, and their application and due diligence process is successful, then as long as they get sufficient interest from our network of investors, then they will be able to receive funding.”

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In addition, Mr Urquhart said Financial Planners

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