Return Of Britain's Fallen Star Fund Manager Sparks Concern


Return of Britain's fallen star fund manager sparks concern

London, (UrduPoint / Pakistan Point News - 18th Feb, 2021 ) :The return of Britain's former star investor Neil Woodford has caused concern in London's City finance district, where his spectacular fall from grace is still fresh in the memory.

Woodford Investment Management, which once boasted billions of Pounds in assets under management, collapsed in 2019 having taken on too much risk, handing vast losses to pension funds, wealthy individuals and other fund managers.

Last weekend however, Woodford, 60, shocked commentators and investors alike with news that he would establish a new finance firm.

"I'm sorry for what I did," he told the Sunday Telegraph in an interview and revealed that his new investment venture that will be called Woodford Capital Management Partners (WCM).

"What I was responsible for was two years of under performance. I was the fund manager, the investment strategy was mine, I owned it and it delivered a period of under performance." In response, activist investment group the True and Fair Campaign, which promotes greater transparency in the finance sector, urged an independent probe.

The campaign, founded by activist Gina Miller and her husband Alan, voiced concern Woodford would return to the financial world just 20 months after notorious failure.

"It is high time there was an independent investigation into the Woodford scandal," the campaign wrote in a letter to parliament's Treasury Select Committee.

"We believe it ought to be a very serious source of public policy concern that high profile individuals such as Mr Woodford can be allowed to re-commence trading when over 300,000 people... are scrabbling to make ends meet after seeing their life savings decimated." The campaign also slammed Britain's Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) regulator for its failings over the collapse.

The FCA however stressed in a statement on Tuesday that Woodford's new business needed to apply for appropriate permissions before commencing any regulated activity.

The watchdog also confirmed that its official probe into the WIM collapse was still ongoing.

Woodford -- once nicknamed "Britain's Warren Buffett" by media after the US investment guru -- forged his name as a top stockpicker in a 30-year career in asset management.

In 2014, he established his Woodford Investment Management.

Five years later, a series of disastrous investments turned sour after Woodford ploughed cash into a number of unlisted healthcare and technology companies, alongside poor stock market bets.