FILE PHOTO: Customers use ATMs at a branch of Lloyds Bank in London, Britain, February 21, 2017. REUTERS/Toby Melville

LONDON (Reuters) – Lloyd’s of London [SOLYD.UL] is reviewing the way insurance products are designed and sold as it calls for simpler products in response to the coronavirus pandemic, the commercial insurance market said on Monday.

Insurers have suffered reputational damage as a result of complex products which are hard for businesses to understand, leading to court cases over whether policyholders are covered for the pandemic in countries including Britain, France and the United States.

“The insurance industry must urgently reassess how it can better serve and support its customers,” Lloyd’s Chief Executive John Neal said in a statement.

He said it was imperative to build simpler insurance products that are more easily understood.

Lloyd’s, which runs an insurance market of more than 90 syndicate members, said it would review how products were developed, designed and sold.

It also laid out recommendations for simpler products in a report published on Monday.

These include insurers carrying out a “linguistics review” of policy documents, investing in new products such as parametric insurance which pay out immediately when specific triggers are hit, and involving customers in product design.

A test case over business interruption insurance brought by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) against eight insurers, including several with a presence at Lloyd’s, is heading for the appeal courts after the regulator said the initial judgment ruled mainly in favour of policyholders.

The case, which is expected to affect more than 60 insurers, 370,000 policyholders and billions in insurance claims, is being closely watched overseas.

Reporting by Carolyn Cohn; Editing by David Clarke

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REUTERS/Toby Melville

© REUTERS/Toby Melville
REUTERS/Toby Melville

  • The London Stock Exchange agreed to sell Italy’s only stock market platform to Paris-headquartered Euronext for about $5 billion.
  • LSE said it opted to divest the Milan stock exchange to fulfill a condition for its acquisition of  data-provider Refinitiv, which is currently under review by the European Union’s executive arm.
  • The deal is politically sensitive, as the Italian government was debating whether to take back full control of Borsa Italiana earlier this year.
  • Euronext has partnered with Italy’s largest bank and state agency CDP to secure the Italian government’s backing.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

The London Stock Exchange agreed on Friday to sell Milan’s Borsa Italiana to pan-European stock operator Euronext for 4.3 billion euros ($5 billion).  


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The LSE said it began discussions with Paris-based Euronext last month and a share purchase agreement was signed on October 9.

The sale depends on LSE’s prospective $27 billion acquisition of data provider Refinitiv, the terms of which are under investigation by the European Commission. 

LSE said it opted to divest the Italian stock exchange to persuade the EU regulator to approve its takeover of Refinitiv.

“We believe the sale of the Borsa Italiana group will contribute significantly to addressing the EU’s competition concerns,” LSE CEO David Schwimmer said in a statement, adding that the exchange is making “good progress” on the Refinitiv deal.

The Refinitiv transaction is expected to be completed by early next year, while the Borsa Italiana deal is set to clear in the first half of 2021. 

Read moreCiti’s US equities chief warns of an ‘extreme peak’ in earnings revisions heading into the crucial reporting season — and explains why it makes stocks vulnerable to a pullback in the weeks ahead

Euronext, valued at about 7 billion

ACCRA, Oct 6 (Reuters)Ghana has suspended the $500 million listing of its gold royalty fund Agyapa Royalties in London following concerns raised by the main opposition party about transparency and governance, a finance ministry letter reviewed by Reuters showed.

In an Oct. 1 letter to the special prosecutor, deputy finance ministry Charles Abu Boahen said the government would delay the Initial Public Offering (IPO), following criticism by the opposition National Democratic Congress opposition party.

“It would be detrimental to proceed without receiving approvals the green light from your office,” Boahen wrote.

A finance ministry spokesman declined to comment immediately.

Agyapa Royalties, a government-backed fund that holds equity interests including mining royalties in the state’s gold assets, had hired banks to list on the London Stock Exchange, sources said on Sept. 21.

Ghana wants to take advantage of the precious metal’s strong performance this year to raise $400 million-$500 million from the IPO.

Last week the opposition National Democratic Congress called for an independent probe into the valuation of the company’s royalty rights and has questioned its proposed registration in Jersey, an offshore British tax haven.

In response the government said it was not seeking secrecy would comply with international corporate governance standards.

If it goes ahead, the listing would benefit from a surge in gold prices as the COVID-19 pandemic pushed investors into safe-haven investments.

(Reporting by Christian Akorlie; Writing by Hereward Holland Editing by Bate Felix and Louise Heavens)

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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He was clearly betting on the wrong horse, but Kindleberger’s treatise should still be top of European regulators’ reading list on the eve of a potentially messy end to decades of unfettered free trade with Britain.

His insights into the forces that make or break a financial center resonate in post-Brexit Europe. Over-centralization carries big risks, bringing what he called “diseconomies of scale,” such as information bottlenecks, spiraling overheads and interference by politicians. His work is a challenge to those who scoff at the idea that London could ever face any serious competition.

The U.K. financial capital arguably became too concentrated for its own good. The 2016 Brexit vote showed euro-zone officials were right to warn that it was risky to have a third of all EU capital markets activity and 90% of euro-denominated derivatives clearing in one place.

Back in the 1970s when Kindleberger was writing, the City looked more like a speculative bubble than a real contender, with U.S. banks using London as a revolving door for U.S. dollar-denominated deposits held overseas called eurodollars. Nobody was waxing lyrical about the City’s talent pool, or superior legal system, as so many do today. Its attraction as a conduit for European cash only really took off after the 1980s, helped by light-touch regulation, political stability and its membership in the EU single market.

Those advantages are more vulnerable today than they’ve ever been. With the post-Brexit transition period set to end on Dec. 31, bringing an end to the U.K.’s frictionless market access to the EU, euro-area hubs are dangling the carrot of tax breaks and regulators are waving the stick of forced relocations. Financial firms operating in the U.K. have already shifted about 7,500 staff and more than 1.2 trillion pounds ($1.6 trillion) of assets to the EU.


Food delivery services have been among the winners of the coronavirus lockdown, as large swathes of the economy ground to a halt. Photo: David Cliff/NurPhoto via Getty Images
Food delivery services have been among the winners of the coronavirus lockdown, as large swathes of the economy ground to a halt. Photo: David Cliff/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Deliveroo is in the process of formalising plans for its London initial public offering (IPO), and has appointed investment bankers to underwrite it.

Goldman Sachs (GS) has taken up the challenge, according to reports by Sky News this morning. The float could raise more than £2bn ($2.6bn), and would take place in 2021.

Other banks are expected to be appointed in the coming months, the report said.

Rumours of listing talks were circulating in the last week of September, as Bloomberg reported people familiar with the matter had said discussions were in their preliminary stages.

Food delivery services have been among the winners of the coronavirus lockdown, as large swathes of the economy ground to a halt.

Although Deliveroo initially struggled under lockdown, it was boosted as the year went on, as customers avoided supermarkets, instead opting to order in food and groceries.

In August, investment from Amazon (AMZN) was cleared by regulators after a competition probe that lasted almost a year. It froze the majority of Amazon’s cash injection.

The CMA said in a statement on Friday 17 April that the decision was made “in light of a deterioration in Deliveroo’s financial position as a result of coronavirus (COVID-19).”

While the extent of Amazon’s stake has not been publicly disclosed, it was the lead investor in a $575m funding round announced by Deliveroo in May last year.

Investors in the company include T Rowe Price (TROW), Fidelity Management and Greenoaks Capital.

A spokesperson for Deliveroo declined to comment on the appointment.

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The company was valued at