Financial advice firm suspends share trading

FINANCIAL advice firm Clarkson Hill Group has suspended trading in its shares “pending clarification of the company’s regulatory position”.

Wisbech-based CHG is one of the country’s largest financial advice companies, according to information on its website, and offers investment advice for wealthy individuals, professionals, companies and private investors.

But a statement issued by the company yesterday said its shares had been “temporarily suspended” from trading on junior stock market the Alternative Investment Market (AIM).

No further details have been given for the reasons of the suspension.

Previous statements on the firm’s website show the company was “in talks” with regulatory body the Financial Services Authority.

The talks were in regard to a number of issues, including CHG’s regulatory capital requirement, the amount of capital many financial services companies are required to hold.

Issues surrounding CHG’s capital requirement surfaced in July, the statements show, and it remains unclear whether they have yet been resolved, or whether they relate to the temporary suspension.

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Yesterday’s statement said: “The company has requested that trading in its shares is temporarily suspended pending clarification of the company’s regulatory position.

“A further announcement will be made in due course.”

The announcement follows an approach by an undisclosed party regarding a possible offer to buy the business, also announced in statements on the firm’s website in October.

The firm employs 340 advisers in 10 offices nationally, including its Wisbech headquarters, and offers investment advice for wealthy individuals, professionals, companies and private investors.

No one from CHG was available for comment yesterday, but statements published on its website showed the company had undergone a “significant turnaround” in fortunes earlier this year, reporting �47,853 profits before tax in the six months to June 30, compared to losses of �178,479 in the same period of 2009.

Turnover increased 12pc to �9.6m over the same period.

The company floated on the Alternative Investment Market in 2006, but was suspended for a day in July after failing to submit its accounts on time.

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