Gina Miller calls for an independent enquiry into failed fund manager Neil Woodford’s plans to start a new investment company (after the £3.7bn disaster last time)

Gina Miller calls for an independent enquiry into failed fund manager Neil Woodford’s plans to start a new investment company (after the £3.7bn disaster last time)

There is shock and anger amongst the 300,000 investor s of Neil Woodford’s last enterprise that he was poised to start again with a new investment fund.

Many were ruined by the disaster when his Woodford Equity Income Fund was first suspended, then shut down, with Mr Woodford removed as investment manager in October 2019 with around £3.7bn of investors’ cash locked away. Woodford said he would resign from his other remaining funds and wind down his investment company, Woodford Investment Management but has since then evaded responsibility and has plotted to make a come back.

Leading the campaign to demand an investigation into the affair is business woman Gina Miller who is behind the True and Fair Campaign. She said she had written to the Treasury Select Committee urging an independent investigation into Woodford’s comeback in the wake of his business’ spectacular collapse.

She wrote: “We believe it ought to be a very serious source of public policy concern that high profile individuals such as Mr Woodford can be allowed to recommence trading, with the slate ostensibly wiped clean, when over 300,000 people some of whom may be your own constituents, are scrabbling to make ends meet after seeing their life savings decimated and their prudent actions and hopes for a secure and comfortable future suddenly and unexpectedly dashed.”

Woodford has defended his actions in the past and said the fund should not have shut


However a defiant Woodford said he had warned administrator Link Fund Solutions against closing this fund in 2019, adding that had investors stuck with him they would be “enjoying the fruits of that faith”. Anecdotally a £1,000 investment would have produced a £25,000 profit over the years the fun ran. When things began to get difficult for the fund as investors withdrew their cash and Woodford’s Midas touch evaded him the fund was shut down.

Ian Carrotte of ICSM said that many small businesses and sole traders have invested with Woodford with a view for a long term pay out. “They were left high and dry,” he said, “with very little chance they will even get their original money back let alone any profits. The campaign for an enquiry will help cast light on this dark chapter and I hope it prevents it happening again.”

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