Bank Funding For Small Businesses

July 19th, 2015 by hesty No comments »

The FPB (The Forum of Private Businesses) is petitioning the Government to ensure that the banks deliver on their bail-out obligations and remain open for business.

Following a seminar held at the London Guildhall to discuss the European Investment Bank’s (EIB’S) £4 billion business fund, small businesses are calling for a return to 2007 lending levels.

The seminar was attended by the President of the EIB, Philippe Maystadt, the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform, Peter Mandelson, and the Chancellor of the Exchequer, Alistair Darling, in addition to representatives from UK banks and businesses.

The FPB, which is preparing to meet with Lord Mandelson and representatives from the banks on the new small business lending forum, has posted its petition on the Downing Street website.

Nick Palin, the FPB’s Director of Finance said: “The European Investment Banking funding, which is being earmarked specifically for businesses, follows the £37 billion in tax payers’ money that the Government has already ploughed into the banks.

There can be no excuse for the major lenders not to live up to their responsibilities to small businesses. We are backing Government’s repeated calls for access to finance to be restored to 2007 levels, and will continue to push for this to happen as quickly as possible”

He added; “Already, more calls are being received by our member helpline concerning issues such as increased overdraft rates and reduced credit lines. Through its new economic downturn panel, the FPB will continue to scrutinise the banks’ relationships with their small business customers. Through the petition, we are urging the government to do the same”.

5 European Investment Reasons for Panama

July 17th, 2015 by hesty No comments »

I remember vividly a time when real estate in Europe was hot. I was studying economics in Madrid and my professor, a young German guy named Knut, described houses and condos as amazing like toilet paper. But since then, many of those great investments have disappeared like an elephant in a Houdini act, and today, Europe’s investors are looking to Panama for answers.

1. A strong currency: With the Euro recently flirting around record highs against the US dollar, Europeans are clearly more inclined to invest abroad. Using online agencies and a plethora of international banks, investing in Panama is even being done from the luxury of home, with several PR firms and satellite companies opening up shop in several major European cities.

2. The descent of traditional tax havens: Places like Lichtenstein and Luxemburg, once notable tax havens in Europe are now under fire and with the EU demanding bank secrecy laws to be changed concerning tax evasion, residents are looking desperately for new, safe locales to position their money. Panama, as an offshore refuge, shows up as a gleaming blip on these radars.

3. The softening of European real estate markets: Once-booming investment markets, specifically in Eastern Europe have now leveled off, to the point that in some cases, real estate earns less than a bank deposit. A region, not but five years ago, deemed to be one of the hottest real estate prospects in the world, is now overheated; these investors are looking for a new spot on the map to get in early, and are turning to Panama.

4. Familiarity: While rural regions like Las Tablas (Los Santos) may not have too many similarities to your everyday village in Brugge, certain coastal areas do have a tendency to remind Europeans of home. And when it comes to city living, many flock to Casco Viejo where open plazas and Spanish/French architecture seem to echo the Europe of yesterday; before prices rose through the roof. Whereas living in the center of the old city might not be financially viable any more in Europe, Casco contrastingly provides these investors with tremendous upside.

5. Increased direct flights: With KLM soon to be offering their new services and IPAT encouraging the tapping of such niche European markets, more and more direct flights into Tocumen Airport are destined to be announced in the near future. This means one, sometimes several less legs on the journey that so many Europeans are already making to the Republic.

When I first moved to Europe, it was pouring outside so I bought a pint of beer in a London pub for $11. Bad weather and high costs of living are also reasons that countries like England have seen more people leaving than ever before. Citizens are simply looking elsewhere for a cheaper real estate and a more affordable standard of living.

While one might assume this European interest is limited to the investments mentioned above, that is not the case. Pre-construction condo sales in Panama City are seeing a revival thanks to Europeans, webmasters are registering increased web traffic from European soil, and tourism businesses are booked thanks to European travel agencies reservations for large groups. And while some may have predicted this influx, I doubt anyone would have expected it this heavy and this soon. Better late than never, real estate in Panama is all set to walk in through the golden phase of prosperity.

An Overview of Banking, Investment and Insurance

July 15th, 2015 by hesty No comments »

A wide range of employers feature in the banking, investment and insurance sector of the UK, including building societies, investment banks, commercial banks, broking firms and insurance companies.  

Investment/ Wholesale Banking – Offering the highest risk, investment banking relies upon the state and performance of the world’s economy. This sector is based on providing specialised financial advice and services to commercial, industrial and government clients. It is said that half of all European global investment banking happens in London.

Retail – This sector cover the services provided in high street banks to small business and individual customers via the banks branch network. Private banking is one of the fastest growing areas in all financial services in recent times; it is when services are offered to high net worth individuals. It is similar to traditional retail banking but offers more services to help wealthy clients look after their money better.

One of the main concerns of retail banking in the future will be coping with identity fraud and the result from the Office of Fair Trading bank charges investigation.  

Investment/Asses Management – Asset management firms have had to develop and improve their operations by provided better opportunities for clients due to the global market and improved technology. The UK is home to third largest market for asset management. Individuals who work in this sector will need to be aware of both national and international trends and to keep up for new emerging markets.  

Financial Advice – IFAs/Independent financial advisers supply advice and information to both businesses and individual clients on products and services that include, investments, pensions, insurance and mortgages.

Many IFAs are self employed and have a group of clients that they will work for on a commission basis. But moves have been made to make fee based services more common than commission services to improve public confidence.

Insurance – The insurance sector in the United Kingdom is the largest in Europe and the third largest in the world. It is considered to be the largest employer in the financial services sector with an estimated 340,000 people working in it, which is a round a third.

So does working in one of these sectors sound appealing? It should be noted that while jobs in the financial, investment and insurance world are often well paid and with excellent benefits packages, they do require a lot of time and effort and can be extremely stressful. Talk to a professional Finance Recruitment company to discuss your options and how to start your career.