Money News: Still want to vote on Standard Life? You have to go to Scotland
Sunday 28 May 2006
Standard Life policyholders who have failed to vote for or against demutualisation by post can now do so only by attending its special general meeting this Wednesday.
Last month, the mutual insurer sent ballot papers to 2.4 million eligible members in a bid to garner support for its proposed float on the London Stock Exchange - and gave them until the close of play today to cast their vote by post.
Those who have missed this deadline - but still intend to vote - must do so in person at the meeting to be held at the Edinburgh International Conference Centre, when the outcome of the ballot will also be revealed.
Half a million policyholders, nearly one in five, have so far failed to register their details and vote, says Standard Life. It cites apathy as one reason, as well as members having changed address without notifying the company. It is not expecting huge numbers to turn up on Wednesday.
Standard Life needs 75 per cent of members to back its proposal to demutualise. If it does go public, each eligible with-profits policyholder - anyone who invested before 31 March 2004 - will get a fixed allocation of 185 shares for their loss of membership, plus a variable allocation that will depend on the value of the policy and when it was taken out.
It is estimated that half the policyholders could get windfalls of between £500 and £1,000.
Those failing to vote will still qualify for their windfall shares.
Next month, a document will be sent out offering discounted shares as well as another chance to "validate" membership - and a share entitlement.
If policyholders fail to come forward by then, their shares will be held by Standard Life for 10 years.
Consumer credit: A million more need debt help
The number of people turning to Citizens Advice with credit problems has doubled over the past eight years, it emerged last week.
Some 1.25 million new cases were dealt with by the debt advice charity in 2005, and of these nearly three quarters, 937,500, related to consumer credit.
People helped by Citizens Advice today owe an average of £13,153 - almost a third more than three years ago, according to the charity's Deeper in Debt report.
"Low income, combined with badly informed and poorly understood financial decisions, is at the root of many clients' debt problems," said David Harker, chief executive of Citizens Advice. "For many, there is little prospect of their income increasing or their circumstances changing."
The charity wants the Government to introduce "debt relief orders" - new insolvency plans that have been put forward by ministers. Unlike bankruptcy or individual voluntary arrangements, these won't entail court involvement and will be cheaper for individuals to apply for. (Bankruptcy, for example, costs £475 in England and Wales.)
The orders would be for people owing under £15,000 and having less than £50 to spare each month, after meeting all essential spending such as rent and bills.
However, a change in current legislation is needed before the orders can be created.
Most debt charities are struggling to cope with the number of people coming forward with problems.
Low interest rates, coupled with lenders desperate for market share, have helped fuel a consumer credit boom, although rising defaults are now forcing many banks and building societies to tighten their belts.
Two per cent of those who receive advice from the Consumer Credit Counselling Service owe over £100,000.
- 1 Jeremy Clarkson 'sees no problem' with his racist language on Top Gear, says BBC
- 2 'Alien thigh bone' on Mars: Excitement from alien hunters at 'evidence' of extraterrestrial life
- 3 Richard Dawkins on babies with Down Syndrome: 'Abort it and try again – it would be immoral to bring it into the world'
- 4 London restaurant 34 creates champagne glass modelled on Kate Moss’ left breast
- 5 ALS ice bucket challenge co-founder Corey Griffin drowns, aged 27
Richard Dawkins on babies with Down Syndrome: 'Abort it and try again – it would be immoral to bring it into the world'
Scottish independence: English people overwhelmingly want Scotland to stay in the UK
Isis threat: Cameron wants an alliance with Iran
Michael Brown shooting: Chaos erupts on the streets of Ferguson after autopsy shows teenager was shot six times – twice in the head
Disgusting, frustrating, but intriguing: how the country really feels about its politicians
Bin bag full of cats' heads discovered near Manchester's Curry Mile
iJobs Money & Business
£30000 - £40000 per annum + benefits+bonus+package: Harrington Starr: C#.NET ...
£20000 - £30000 per annum + benefits+bonus+package: Harrington Starr: Junior D...
£550 - £650 per day: Orgtel: Business Analyst - Traded Credit Risk - Investmen...
£55000 per annum: Harrington Starr: A financial software vendor at the forefro...
Day In a Page
A first-floor flat with two bedrooms, a spacious reception room and communal grounds in a leafy part of London
A three-bedroom flat with a spacious rootop terrace and balcony, accessed from a private gated courtyard
A Grade II-listed pile with six bedrooms, stables and 39 acres of grounds in Standlake
A two-bedroom flat with boutique hotel-style interiors, close to the foodie haunt of West End Lane
A two-bedroom flat in a beautiful old vicarage, with many original features, close to the city centre
A three-bedroom 16th-century home with an aga kitchen, private gardens and heated outdoor pool, in Hadleigh
A three-bedrom home in sought-after Queen's Gate Mews, with Italian marble-finished bathrooms
Surrounded by glorious countryside in the village of Udimore, sits this impressive four-kiln oast and barn conversion
A five-bedroom house in the picturesque village of Kettlewell, north Yorkshire
An 18th-century former coaching inn with original staircase, open fireplaces and beams throughout
A Grade II-listed Georgian town house with three bedrooms and a south-facing courtyard, near Arundel Castle
Feel on top of the world at this über chic penthouse on the 37th floor of one of Europe’s tallest blocks.
A Grade II-listed Victorian villa with six bedrooms and two further cottages, all with spectacular sea views
A grade II-listed, Georgian cottage with mature 50ft garden, perfect for summer entertaining
A magnificent Georgian pile with turrets, seven bedrooms, a heated pool and four acres of gardens
Fairoak Farm has five bedroom suites, gym, outdoor swimming pool and golf course
Chic two-bedroom river-fronted flat with a private lift that delivers you directly to your home
A spectacular seven-bedroom Tudor pile, once owned by Henry VIII, with 18 acres of land
A seven-bedroom Georgian property previously used as a picturesque wedding venue
A split-level flat in a church conversion with two en suite bedrooms and 1,200sq ft of living space
A three-bedroom bungalow situated behind an impressive stone wall, £645,000
Windsor Castle overlooks this three-bedroom Victorian cottage located on one of Windsor's smartest roads
Chapel House is a former vicarage with nine bedrooms in the beautiful Upper Wye Valley
A five-bedroom B&B and separate owner's accomodation with potential for conversion
Enjoy summer by the Thames in this two double-bedroom converted warehouse in Rotherhithe village
A one-bedroom, luxury apartment with private gym and concierge service in Moorgate
A four-bedroom house in Hermitage Gardens with three reception rooms and landscaped gardens
A seven-bedroom Grade II-listed property with a separate self-contained apartment
A five-bedroom Victorian house with three reception rooms and galleried landing, £695,000
A six-bedroom farmhouse with five acres of land in a former cloth-making village
A secluded seven-bedroom detached house with large private garden, £490,000
A three-bedroom cottage overlooking Sarratt village green with open fires and solid oak floors
A three-bedroom maisonette flat in a Grade I-listed, Georgian townhouse in a sought-after location
A one-bedroom apartment located within a private gated development, north of Turnham Green
Look forward to a brighter future at two-bedroom Sunny Cottages, ideal for Londoners looking to downsize
A three-bedroom red-brick cottage with outbuildings and pretty gardens, £200,000
This three-bedroom flat within a former textile factory spans the corner of the fourth floor and has a balcony