Invesco fined by Imro for the third time

Invesco Asset Management yesterday became the first company ever to be fined three times by Imro, the investment regulator.

Imro announced that it had fined Invesco pounds 60,000 for breaching its rules on handling client money, following two other fines in 1993 and 1991.

Invesco must also pay Imro's costs of pounds 25,500 for the latest breach of the rules. These breaches included failing to reconcile client money bank accounts on time, failing to correct differences on reconciliations, and failing to maintain written compliance procedures.

In 1991 Invesco suffered a pounds 75,000 fine from Imro for similar reasons, related to the administration of PEPs and client money. Then in 1993 Imro made 55 charges of management and procedural failings against Invesco, some of which related to assets claimed by the Robert Maxwell pension funds.

At that point Imro fined Invesco pounds 750,000 plus costs of around pounds 1.6m. Invesco then completely replaced its top management in London, spurred on by new American owners. An Imro source said yesterday that everything had been put right in this revamp "except the reconciliations department, which was overlooked."

In the latest list of charges, Imro said Invesco had accepted it had failed on a number of occasions to reconcile its own records of client account balances with the bank in which these funds were kept. For instance, Invesco did not carry out reconciliations for one client settlement bank account from January to August 1994.