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UK bank called on to honour advice promise

A group of British bond investors has called on the Co-operative Bank to honour its commitment to pay for professional advice services for its bondholders ahead of a planned restructure.

An action group headed up by UK professional bond investor Mark Taber told the Mail on Sunday that a restructure of the Co-operative Group’s bond offering could negatively impact many British pensioners.

“In announcing the offer, the Co-op said it would look to fund financial advice,” Mr Taber said. “It has not been forthcoming. It should be providing advice now.”

Mr Taber has rallied more than 1,100 bond investors to the campaign and is in discussions with US law firm Brown Rudnick about legal avenues to make the agreement to provide advice enforceable.

A spokesperson for the Co-op said the banking and retail group was “mindful of the different interests of small retail bondholders” in the lead-up to the proposed changes.

“We are also considering the way er can facilitate the provision of independent financial advice to retail holders at the Bank’s cost,” the spokesperson said.

The planned restructure is reportedly in response to requirement that the bank pay GBP 1.5 billion in new regulatory fees.