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Bitesize Blighty: September 14, 2018

Mark Rapaport

  • British Airways is the latest company to take advantage of improved funding positions in the UK bulk annuity market, passing on $4.4bn of its pension liability on to Legal & General, a British insurer. This transaction is being hailed as the UK’s largest bulk annuity deal, in a scheme that gives BA workers a guaranteed proportion of their salary for every year of retirement. This deal sees Legal & General taking on liability for 22,000 BA pensioners and about 60 per cent of the assets in the airline’s older final salary pension scheme, which was closed in the 1980s.
  • UK Cabinet Ministers held a special meeting this week to discuss preparations in the event of a ‘no deal’ Brexit. Following the meeting, the UK Government released another set of technical notices laying out a guidance to the public and business on preparations in advance of a no-deal scenario. Possible consequences of a no-deal divorce include: UK driving licenses becoming invalid within the EU; entry denial into the Schengen (EU) zone for UK nationals with passports close to expiry, required checks for UK citizens crossing the border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland – and vice-versa, and requirements that UK broadcasters abide by the regulations in the EU countries where they show their content.
  • This week, the UK government made allegations against two Russian agents suspected of carrying out the nerve agent attacks against Sergei Skripal and his daughter in Salisbury earlier this year. The named suspects, Alexander Petrov and Ruslan Boshirov, told state-run channel Russia Today they had specifically travelled to Salisbury on the recommendation of friends to see the ‘world-famous’ Salisbury Cathedral, only spending two days in the country. 

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