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News Tag: OFT

March 9, 2012

Payday loan company’s licence revoked

by Jan Harris
Payday loan company’s licence revoked
Credit broker Yes Loans has had its licence revoked by the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) over concern that its business practices ‘deceitful and oppressive’. Two associated businesses, Blue Sky Personal Finance and Money Worries Limited, have also been found to be unfit to hold a consumer credit licence. Following a long-term investigation, the OFT revealed that Yes Loans sold expensive payday loans to some ...




August 22, 2011

Loan scam complaints up 50%

by Gill Montia
Loan scam complaints up 50%
The Office of Fair Trading (OFT) is warning people to steer clear of scam loan companies that take upfront fees but fail to provide credit, or offer unsuitable credit alternatives. The watchdog has seen a 50% year-on-year rise in complaints about loan scams, particularly credit applications that involve upfront fees sent through money transfer companies. It has therefore issued key "dos and ...




February 11, 2011

OFT to launch investigation into card surcharges

by Kay Mitchell
”OFT
Consumer group Which? is concerned about surcharges imposed on to consumers who pay by debit or credit cards. It has therefore asked the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) to investigate the matter - which sees retailers, local authorities, estate agents and cinemas all impose the charges. However, the “worst offenders” are said to be budget airlines including Ryanair, Flybe and easyJet. According ...




July 22, 2010

Summer house maintenance a boon to rogue traders

by Gill Montia
”Summer
The Office of Fair Trading (OFT) is warning people that the summer is an opportune time for rogue traders who offer home maintenance work on the doorstep. In 2009, the government-funded advice service, Consumer Direct, received more than 5,300 complaints over such offers of work, a 16% rise from the previous year. Complaints peaked from July through to the autumn, with ...




June 29, 2010

Cash ISA transfers to speed up

by Kay Mitchell
”Cash
Following an investigation into Individual Savings Accounts (ISAs), savers with a cash ISA should find it quicker to switch their money to a different provider. The 90-day investigation, conducted by the Office of Fair Trading (OFT), came after Consumer Focus warned that cash ISAs are depriving savers of £3 billion in interest each year. The consumer group said savers are missing out on ...




March 31, 2010

Consumer group calls for investigation into ISAs

by Kay Mitchell
”Consumer
Consumer Focus has warned that cash ISAs are depriving savers of £3 billion in interest each year. The consumer group has made a complaint to the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) and is calling for an investigation into Individual Savings Accounts (ISAs). ISAs, which were launched a decade ago by then Chancellor, Gordon Brown, and were introduced to encourage Brits to ...




March 30, 2010

RBS fined £29m for sharing confidential price information

by Kay Mitchell
”RBS
The Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS), which is 84% state-owned, has been fined £28.6 million by the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) after admitting breaches of competition law. RBS confessed to passing on loan pricing information to its rival Barclays and the OFT began its investigation after receiving a tip-off from Barclays. According to the OFT, RBS broke the rules between ...




March 16, 2010

Consumers to benefit from overdraft opt-out

by Kay Mitchell
’Consumers
Consumer watchdog, the Office of Fair Trading (OFT), has today revealed UK banks may soon be offering customers the ability to opt out of unarranged overdraft facilities. Should the procedure be put in place, it would mean consumers would avoid hefty fees if they slipped into the red. The announcement comes as the OFT took legal action against banks regarding unauthorised overdraft ...




February 19, 2010

Watchdog recommends “shake-up” of estate agency market

by Gill Montia
”Watchdog
The Office of Fair Trading (OFT) is recommending a "shake-up" of the way in which most Britons sell their homes, including new legislation that encourages innovation in the estate agency market. Following a study of the home-buying and selling process, the watchdog concludes: "The housing market remains dominated by traditional estate agents with weak competition between them on price". It wants to ...




February 3, 2010

Orange and T-Mobile merger under threat

by Kay Mitchell
”Orange
The planned merger between mobile phone giants, T-Mobile UK and Orange, is set to be investigated by the Office of Fair Trading (OFT). The OFT said the merger "threatens significantly to affect competition in mobile telecommunications in the UK". At the time of the proposed merger in September, the two phone giants said a deal would create the UK’s largest mobile phone ...




December 22, 2009

OFT scraps plans to take further court action against banks

by Kay Mitchell
”OFT
Consumer watchdog, the Office of Fair Trading (OFT), has announced it is to abandon plans to take further legal action against banks regarding unauthorised overdraft charges. At the end of last month, the Supreme Court ruled in favour of the banks over the fairness of the charges. The test case originally commenced in July 2007 after it was discovered ...




November 30, 2009

Lloyds seeks to dismiss overdraft cases

by Kay Mitchell
”Lloyds
Last week, the Supreme Court ruled in favour of the banks over the fairness of unauthorised overdraft charges. The legal battle, which has been ongoing since July 2007, came as a devastating blow to consumer groups who have been campaigning for many years about the charges, which they deem to be unfair. Since the ruling, banking giant Lloyds said it is seeking to ...




November 25, 2009

Banks win legal battle over unauthorised charges

by Kay Mitchell
”Banks
The Supreme Court has today ruled in favour of the banks over the fairness of unauthorised overdraft charges. The legal battle, which has been ongoing since July 2007, will come as a devastating blow to consumer groups who have been campaigning for many years about the charges, which they deem to be unfair. However, Lord Phillips, president of the Supreme Court said: ...




Unfair bank charges – Supreme Court to decide today

by Kay Mitchell
”Unfair
The ongoing legal battle between seven high street banks and one building society could reach a conclusion today. The Supreme Court will decide whether the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) has the power to assess whether or not bank charges are fair. The case, which has been ongoing for more than two years, could see banks refund millions of pounds ...




November 17, 2009

Wednesday 25 November is judgement day

by Kay Mitchell
”Wednesday
The ongoing legal battle between eight high street banks and the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) over unauthorised overdraft charges might actually reach a conclusion next week. Wednesday 25 November is the date that has been set for the Supreme Court to decide whether the OFT has the power to assess whether or not bank charges are fair. Banks and building societies were ...




October 7, 2009

Banks agree to make costs transparent

by Kay Mitchell
”Banks
An investigation by the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) found that consumers struggle to understand current account charges, as well as interest rates and overdraft fees. As a result, new measures from 2011 will see banks make it easier for consumers to understand their costs and charges, as well as making the switching process easier. This means it will be simpler to transfer ...




June 23, 2009

OFT launches online register of dodgy estate agents

by Gill Montia
”OFT
The Office of Fair Trading (OFT) has launched an online version of its register of dodgy estate agents. Firm's listed have been given warnings or been banned from estate agency work and the list can be viewed at www.oft.gov.uk/estateagentregister The register can be browsed alphabetically or by date and also provides information on how to report suspected breaches by a firm ...




March 26, 2009

OFT report reveals weaknesses of Faster Payments service

by Kay Mitchell
OFT report reveals weaknesses of Faster Payments service
A report from the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) has revealed that the new Faster Payments service is not as efficient as it could be. The Faster Payments service was launched to speed up the time taken for electronic bank payments to clear but the report revealed that the service is only running at 69% capacity. It is expected that ...




March 8, 2009

OFT shuts down 13 debt advice websites for ‘misleading’ customers

by Kay Mitchell
”OFT
The Office of Fair Trading (OFT) has shut down thirteen websites for misleading consumers. The watchdog said these debt management companies, which have not been named, are using website addresses similar to non-profit organisations and are deliberately misleading customers. Ray Watson, OFT credit director, said “We believe they are misleading consumers by holding themselves out as free advice agencies ...




January 22, 2009

Taxpayer-owned banks pressured to stop overdraft fees

by David Masters
Taxpayer-owned banks pressured to stop overdraft fees
Banks are under pressure to back down from their multi-million pound court appeal in favour of overdraft charges. The banks are currently appealing a High Court ruling from last April that allowed the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) to determine the fairness of bank charges. Some banks were known to charge customers up to £39 for exceeding their overdraft limit or ...