View more on these topics

FSA fines North Wales broker £100,000

The Financial Services Authority has banned a North Wales mortgage broker and fined him £100,000 for exposing 1,500 customers to the risk of unsuitable advice.

Stephen Jones, senior partner of Jones & Poole Independent Mortgage Specialists was fined alongside junior partner Simon Poole. Poole was fined £7,000 for exposing 750 clients to the risk of obtaining unsuitable mortgages.

The FSA found that Jones failed to control his business effectively and to adhere to regulatory requirements. It also found that Jones did not treat customers fairly when recommending mortgage contracts.

Prior to a visit from FSA staff Jones arranged for customers to sign and back date fact find documents, and also provided a lender with false information to support his own mortgage application.

Poole, who ran the partnership’s office in Chester, was fined for failing to document whether a client could afford to pay the mortgage. He also failed to implement changes recommended by a compliance consultant.

Jonathan Phelan, head of retail enforcement at the FSA, says: “Jones and Poole exposed more than 2000 of the partnership’s customers to the risk of receiving unsuitable advice and losing money.

“Jones’ fraudulent mortgage application and his dishonesty in attempting to cover up regulatory failings were completely unacceptable warranting a ban and a large financial penalty. Poole’s failings were of a lesser order and although they were deserving of a fine he has not been banned.”

The two men had limited dealings with each other, running each office as a separate business.

Phelan adds: “It was in effect a dysfunctional partnership. It is important that partnerships which carry on regulated financial services business are organised so they can be controlled as a single business with clear lines of responsibility and accountability.”

Poole qualified for a 30% discount as he agreed to settle at an early part of the FSA’s investigation. Had this not been the case he would have been fined £10,000.

Recommended

US bailout rejected

The US House of Representatives voted against the $700bn rescue plan that was set to save the US from recession.

Enterprise launches Platform exclusives

Enterprise Group has launched an exclusive range of fixed rate products from Platform which have gone live today on Enterprise’s Edge system.

Small firms feel the pinch too

The past few months have seen a steady flow of redundancy ann-ouncements from major housebuilders and financial services companies affected by the credit crunch, such as mortgage lenders and credit card issuers.

B&B sees share price plunge to 16p

Beleaguered buy-to-let specialist Bradford & Bingley saw its share price plunge to an all-time low of 16.75p in early morning trading today.

Keep calm and carry on?

We British are known for our stiff upper lip and just getting on with things. It’s part of our quirky cultural behaviour – like forming orderly queues, or saying sorry when it’s not our fault. Many of us just aren’t that great at talking about what’s bothering us. But if someone feels that the stresses […]

Newsletter

News and expert analysis straight to your inbox

Sign up