EQ weekly roundup 26-9-18 - Equilibrium

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    EQ weekly roundup 26-9-18

    This week’s roundup includes warnings of air travel disruption in a no-deal Brexit scenario, figures reveal half a billion pounds has been stolen via banking scams and China has accused the US of bullying in its trade relationship.

    This week’s roundup includes warnings of air travel disruption in a no-deal Brexit scenario, figures reveal half a billion pounds has been stolen via banking scams and China has accused the US of bullying in its trade relationship. 

    Flights ‘at risk’ under no-deal Brexit, govt warns

    A no-deal Brexit could cause disruption to air travel between the UK and European Union countries, the government warned on Monday.

    This worst-case scenario is set out in the latest batch of documents outlining what would happen to key industries if no agreement is reached.

    Bus and coach services to EU countries could also be suspended in the event of no deal.

    “If the UK leaves the EU in March 2019 with no agreement in place, UK and EU licensed airlines would lose the automatic right to operate air services between the UK and the EU without seeking advance permission,” the government said.

    The UK “would envisage” allowing EU airlines to continue flying and “we would expect EU countries to reciprocate in turn”, according to the document.

    It added: “It would not be in the interest of any EU country or the UK to restrict the choice of destinations that could be served, though if such permissions are not granted, there could be disruption to some flights.”

    The warning does not necessarily mean that flights would be grounded the day after Brexit.

    Half a billion stolen in banking scams

    More than £500m was stolen from customers of British banks in the first half of 2018, new figures have shown.

    Industry group UK Finance said £145m of that was due to authorised push payment (APP) scams, in which people are conned into sending money to another account.

    But £358m was lost to unauthorised fraud, which includes transactions made without account holders’ knowledge.

    Unauthorised fraud victims are usually refunded by their banks, but victims of APP fraud rarely get their money back. This is because current legislation means they are liable for any losses incurred if they authorise a payment themselves.

    “Purchase scams”, in which people are duped into paying for products or services that do not exist, were the most prevalent form of APP fraud reported in the first six months of 2018.

    There were also 3,866 reported cases of impersonation scams, in which criminals pretend to be from a financial institution or law enforcement, and trick account holders into transferring money.

    China accuses US of bullying over tariffs

    China has accused the US of trade bullying after a new round of US tariffs on Chinese goods kicked in.

    The US imposed tariffs on a further $200bn ($152bn) worth of Chinese products, the largest round yet in the escalating trade war between the economic superpowers.

    The tariffs are in response to what the US says are unfair trading practices by China. Beijing has since retaliated with tariffs on $60bn of US goods.

    In an official white paper, as reported by Xinhua news agency, China said the US was employing “trade bullyism practices”, “intimidating other countries through economic measures”, and hurting the global economy.

    China has also accused the US of starting the “largest trade war in economic history”.

    The latest move takes the total amount of Chinese imports hit by US tariffs since July up to $250bn. This means about half of all Chinese imports to the US are now subject to new duties.

    Tesco Bank facing fine over cyberattack

    Tesco’s banking arm is facing the City regulator’s biggest-ever cyberattack-related fine two years after its online services were hacked by criminals attempting to steal funds from customers.

    According to Sky News, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has warned Tesco that it is considering imposing a penalty of more than £30m on the company.

    It follows an incident in November 2016 when Tesco Bank was forced to suspend all online transactions after it detected criminals trying to access its services. The lender revised the number of customers whose savings were stolen downwards from initial estimates of 40,000 to 20,000.

    Tesco Bank is understood to have eventually put the figure at fewer than 50 customers, all of whom were refunded within days, while no customer data was compromised.

    A legal source on Monday told Sky News that Tesco Bank was contesting the scale of the FCA’s proposed penalty and was in active negotiations with the watchdog about it.

    A “substantially lower” sum could be agreed within the next few weeks although there was no guarantee that the issue could be resolved swiftly, according to the legal insider.

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