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UK consumer confidence hits 12-year high in March


LONDON - British consumer morale rose to its highest level in more than 12 years this month, continuing an upward trend which economic polling company GfK said could boost Prime Minister David Cameron's hopes of re-election in May 7's election.


Advice gap leaves 'pension freedom' pitfalls for UK savers 30 Mar 2015

LONDON - A lack of specialist advice to all but the well-off leaves a plethora of pitfalls lying in wait for the millions of British pensioners looking forward to their impending freedom to choose where to invest their retirement savings.

Complaints against UK banks dip 7 percent as insurance scandal fades 30 Mar 2015

LONDON - Complaints against Britain's banks fell in the second half of last year as fewer people lodged objections about insurance protection mis-selling.


UK mortgage approvals rise to six-month high in February 30 Mar 2015

LONDON - British mortgage approvals hit a six-month high in February, rising for a third straight month and suggesting the housing market could start to regain momentum, Bank of England data showed on Monday.


Carney says BoE rates likely to rise, contrasts with Haldane 30 Mar 2015

FRANKFURT - The Bank of England expects its next move in interest rates to be an increase not a cut despite record low inflation, Bank of England Governor Mark Carney said on Friday, underscoring his difference of view with the Bank's chief economist.

Fast-growing 'smart' funds in regulators' sights 27 Mar 2015

LONDON - Funds that mimic strategies used by active managers for a fraction of the cost could be forced to carry a health warning by regulators who are concerned they may pose greater risks than are being disclosed.


UK house price growth slows again in March 27 Mar 2015

LONDON - British house prices rose in March by the smallest annual amount since September 2013, figures from mortgage lender Nationwide showed on Friday, adding to signs the country's housing market is cooling.


MPs slam financial watchdog over insurance debacle 27 Mar 2015

LONDON - Britain's financial regulator broke its own rules by failing to keep markets orderly when it mishandled the announcement of a review into life insurance policies, MPs said on Friday.


Bank of England policymakers see scant need for rate cut 26 Mar 2015

LONDON - Three Bank of England policymakers said on Wednesday they saw little chance of a cut in interest rates in the face of tumbling inflation, distancing themselves from the position of the central bank's chief economist.

UK mortgage approvals rise for second month in February 26 Mar 2015

LONDON - Mortgages approved by British banks rose in February for a second month in a row, adding to signs that a slowdown in the British housing market may have bottomed out, the British Bankers' Association said on Wednesday.


First-time-buyer bonus lifts housebuilders

LONDON - The government announced it would top up first-time buyers' savings to help them buy a home on Wednesday, building on the success of its "Help to Buy" equity loan scheme that has boosted the property market since it was unveiled two years ago.

Royal London full-year operating profit rises 12 percent

- Royal London, Britain's largest mutually owned life, pensions and investment company, said its full-year EEV operating pretax profit rose 12 percent, boosted by robust new business, particularly in its intermediary pensions and wealth businesses.


Market uncertainty tempers forecasts for equities' gains this year

- Uncertainty surrounding the timing of the U.S. Federal Reserve's interest rate hike has tempered analysts' forecasts for stock market gains this year, Reuters polls showed on Tuesday.

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