On the scent of a windfall

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The Independent Online
BUILDING societies do not have to distribute funds to members, but they need their votes for any merger or takeover to go through, so a 'bribe' has become the norm.

When two societies merge this takes the form of a distribution of surplus funds held by the one with the larger reserves. But C&G's reserves will remain intact as all the payments to savers and borrowers are to come from the price being paid by Lloyds Bank.

Some of the front-runners to shed their mutuality and offer the hope of windfall gains to savers are Halifax Building Society, Alliance & Leicester, Woolwich, Leeds Permanent, Bradford & Bingley, National & Provincial, Birmingham Midshires, Northern Rock, Yorkshire, Portman, Norwich & Peterborough.

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