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The Independent Online
GENERAL Accident Life is offering a new fixed-rate mortgage at 4.75 per cent until October 1997 with a valuation fee of pounds 99, a reservation fee of pounds 250 and a 60-month redemption penalty period. Midland Bank, which has cut its standard variable rate to 7.95 per cent, is offering discounts of up to 4.86 per cent for 12 months.

DARLINGTON Building Society has cut its standard variable rate to 7.99 per cent. It has introduced discount mortgages ranging from 4.75 per cent off the variable rate until January 1997, 2.40 off until January 1998 and 2.04 off until January 1999, if homeowners take its insurance package. Early redemption charges of 3 per cent gross interest apply for 12, 18 and 24 months after fixed rates end.

NEWCASTLE Building Society has cut its standard variable rate to 7.99 per cent and introduced a 0.14 per cent loyalty bonus for borrowers of five years' standing, and a no-claims cash-back for 12 months claim-free on its buildings and contents insurance.

LLOYDS Bank is launching Mudi, a mortgage protection package to coincide with the cut in state support for the unemployed from 2 October. Premiums start at pounds 4.40 per month for every pounds 100 of mortgage payments, or pounds 3.96 for owners with Lloyds Bank contents or buildings insurance. London-based Premierplan is offering sickness, accident, unemployment and hospitalisation cover through independent financial advisers at pounds 5.95 per pounds 100 of benefit.

TSB is launching a new guaranteed stock market bond this week with a 100 per cent guarantee, a 25 per cent gain locked in if the FT-SE 100 index gains 25 per cent at any time in the five-year life of the bond, and an averaged return in the final 12 months to protect against sudden falls. Initial charge is 5 per cent and minimum investment pounds 2,000. Save & Prosper is starting a similar product with any 30 per cent gain locked- in.

EDINBURGH-based Baillie Gifford is opening its top-performing Convertible & General Unit Trust to investors wanting a tax-free PEP. The gross yield of the fund at present is 5.3 per cent with scope for capital growth as convertibles are switched into shares. There is an initial charge of 3.5 per cent, an annual charge of 1 per cent and a PEP "wrapper" fee of 0.25 per cent.

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