Opinion  

Painful experience with investment trusts

Harry Katz

I think he is batting on a very sticky wicket. I have moaned about investment companies for a very long time.

Two very recent examples concerning Halifax re British Empire Securities and General Trust and The Share Centre re Caledonia may shed some light.

In the first case an application for £10,000 was initially sent on 22 October but due to problems with the application forms the finally accepted application was not sent until 31 October. In the second case (also for £10,000) this was also sent on 22 October.

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In both cases client mandates were sent so that we could have information. Is this not stupid seeing as we submitted the applications in the first place?

In neither case have we (to date) received any acknowledgement or paperwork advising account numbers, shares purchased.

The Share Centre could not find the paperwork when I rang (29 November). I faxed copies and finally found the originals and provided the information.

The Halifax admits seeing my mandate, but it has lost it. I now have to submit a new mandate. The new mandate has to be an original with a ‘wet’ signature as this is all it will accept. Without it I cannot have any information.

This not a very unusual tale – dealing with third-party administrators on investment trusts has always been painful.

Harry Katz

Principal

Norwest Consultants

Middlesex

Reply from Halifax Share Dealing

Unfortunately, we cannot comment on cases without the permission of the customer involved. If we have mislaid a mandate, then we would like to offer our sincere apologies.

As a broking service that has no specific product or charging structure for IFAs, we would not, as a matter of course, provide confirmations advising of account numbers or shares purchased to the third parties registered on the account, unless requested to do so.