Simon Read: How lending works: 75% to you, but just 3.5% to Tory cronies - Your Money - Money - The Independent

Simon Read: How lending works: 75% to you, but just 3.5% to Tory cronies

The people's champion

A gaggle of top Tories attended a plush bank bash in the City last month. Home Secretary Theresa May led the turnout of Tory bigwigs who included Philip Hammond, Francis Maude, Lord Patten, Lord Young, David Davis, Michael Fallon, Chris Grayling and Mark Garnier.

They were celebrating the  180th anniversary of private bank Arbuthnot Latham and were treated to a slap-up, Mosimann dinner followed by a performance by opera star Katherine Jenkins.

Nice. Especially when you bear in mind that the bank’s boss has enjoyed cosy dinners in Downing Street with the Camerons. Henry Angest, pictured, is a major Tory funder who gave the party a £5m overdraft facility just before the last General Election at a “mate’s rate” of just 3.5 per cent.

The 72-year-old Swiss-born millionaire can do exactly what he wants with his fortune. But he’s not so friendly to ordinary folk who want to borrow from the high-street lender he controls.

That business – Everyday Loans – charges ordinary members of the public interest at an average  74.8 per cent APR.

That’s not a total rip-off but is around 15 times as expensive as borrowers are charged at mainstream lenders. It’s clear who  Mr Angest’s lender targets – vulnerable people who can’t get a loan through normal methods.

He’s profiting from hard-up folk forced to pay excessive interest. So I’m uncomfortable seeing him cosy up to those who could decide the future of high-cost credit.

* The facility provided to the Conservative Party by Arbuthnot Latham preceded the acquisition of Everyday Loans. Profits from Everyday Loans have not been provided to any political party.

Everyday Loans have told us that it considers customers’ affordability prospects and only lends in a responsible manner which is fundamentally different to the approach used by payday lenders. Interest rates reflect the risk involved in lending to individual borrowers and are typically 20 times less than payday lenders

Cold calls: Flogging PPI claims is angering not helping people

Big Nev is Britain’s latest reality star. He dominates the screen every Tuesday night in BBC3’s series The Call Centre.

He’s boss of Swansea’s third-largest call centre and goes to extreme lengths to try to make sure it’s a happy workplace. But despite him calling his business Saving Britain Money, I suspect that the majority of the 1.5 million people targeted by Big Nev’s workers each year are far from happy to get the call.

That’s because he’s been flogging payment protection insurance claims management. A survey from Which? this week showed that almost two thirds of unwanted annoying calls come from firms flogging PPI compensation claims.

The annoying PPI calls proved very profitable for Big Nev last year bringing him profits of more than £4m, almost three quarters of the total amount his business made.

So if you enjoy the show, just give some thought to the victims of cold callers, particularly elderly folk. The calls are no joke for them.

Energy: Electric bills could start to fall if Ofgem gets its way

The energy regulator this week pledged to “break the stranglehold” of the “Big Six” energy suppliers. How? Ofgem has threatened the energy firms with fines unless they become more transparent about wholesale prices.

This is an issue which has been rumbling along for almost a decade. Smaller energy suppliers complained about the lack of transparency in pricing back in 2003 and the watchdog has been working to tackle the problem since 2008.

If the Big Six – British Gas, EDF, E.on, Npower, SSE and Scottish Power – publish the prices at which they buy and sell electricity up to two years in advance, it will allow rivals to plan better and, hopefully be more competitive.

But, in its usual stalling manner, the energy industry has called for “further discussions”.

Forget it. The time to talk about this is long gone. We need action now to bring fairer pricing to all electricity users.

News
John Travolta is a qualified airline captain and employed the pilot with his company, Alto
people'That was the lowest I’d ever felt'
Life and Style
healthIt isn’t greasy. It doesn’t smell. And moreover, it costs nothing
News
peopleThe report and photo dedicated to the actress’s decolletage has, unsurprisingly, provoked anger
Property
Home body: Badger stays safe indoors
property
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
The programme sees four specialists creating what they believe are three perfect couples, based on scientific matchmaking. The couples will not meet until they walk down the aisle together
tvUK wedding show jilted
Arts and Entertainment
US pop diva Jennifer Lopez sang “Happy Birthday” to Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedow, president of Turkmenistan
musicCorporate gigs become key source of musicians' income
Arts and Entertainment
You've been framed: Henri Matisse's colourful cut-outs at Tate Modern
artWhat makes a smash-hit art show
Arts and Entertainment
While many films were released, few managed to match the success of James Bond blockbuster 'Skyfall'
filmsDaniel Craig believed to be donning skis as 007 for first time
Sport
Mikel Arteta pictured during Borussia Dortmund vs Arsenal
champions league
Voices
Yes supporters gather outside the Usher Hall, which is hosting a Night for Scotland in Edinburgh
voicesBen Judah: Is there a third option for England and Scotland that keeps everyone happy?
Arts and Entertainment
Pulp-fiction lover: Jarvis Cocker
booksJarvis Cocker on Richard Brautigan
Arts and Entertainment
Robin Thicke and Pharell Williams in the video of the song, which has been accused of justifying rape
music...and he had 'almost no part' in writing it
Finacial products from our partners
Property search

Retirement

 

Mortgages

Fee-free, expert mortgage advice:

  • Find the right mortgage for you
  • Latest best-buy deals
  • Mortgage calculators
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Money & Business

    Sales Executive

    £20 - 24k (Uncapped Commission - £35k Year 1 OTE): Guru Careers: We are seekin...

    Payroll & Accounts Assistant

    £20 - 24k + Benefits: Guru Careers: This is a great opportunity for an enthusi...

    SQL Developer - Watford/NW London - £280 - £320 p/d - 6 months

    £280 - £320 per day: Ashdown Group: The Ashdown Group have been engaged by a l...

    Senior BA - Insurance **URGENT**

    £400 - £450 Per Day: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: **URGENT CONTRACT ROLE**...

    Day In a Page

    Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

    A shot in the dark

    Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
    His life, the universe and everything

    His life, the universe and everything

    New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
    Save us from small screen superheroes

    Save us from small screen superheroes

    Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
    Reach for the skies

    Reach for the skies

    From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
    These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

    12 best hotel spas in the UK

    Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments
    These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

    Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

    Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
    Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

    Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

    Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
    How to make a Lego masterpiece

    How to make a Lego masterpiece

    Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
    Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

    Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

    Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
    Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

    Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

    His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam
    'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

    'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

    Exclusive extract from Janis Winehouse's poignant new memoir
    Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

    Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

    The Imitation Game, film review
    England and Roy Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption in Basel

    England and Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption

    Welbeck double puts England on the road to Euro 2016
    Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

    Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

    Pictures removed from public view as courts decide ownership
    ‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

    ‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

    Donatella Versace at New York Fashion Week