THE Financial Ombudsman is taking a hard line over the increasing number of complaints coming its way about gadgets. More dissatisfaction is hardly surprising given the explosion in electronic gizmos we are all buying, but it is disappointing that retailers always have to push their luck.
FRANKLIN D Roosevelt said: "The overwhelming majority of Americans are possessed of two great qualities, a sense of humour and a sense of proportion." Once upon a time, he could have been talking about the Scots.
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IT'S been a high-wire week at the Pru. First, it emerged that some 39,000 former Prudential customers are to share a £4 million payout, because tax credits relating to investments between 2004 and 2008 were not paid into investors' accounts as they should have been.
TOMORROW we will get a blueprint for the shape of banking over the next couple of decades, but I will bet you a fiver that in 20, 30 or 50 years, when we hit the next banking crisis, we'll look back on this event as one of the great missed opportunities of the 21st century.
HERE'S a conundrum for you. Can you spot the odd one out? An election is coming. Universal peace has been declared, and foxes are poised to declare chickens a protected species.
I FIND Chancellor George Osborne divides people. To some, the accident-prone youth has matured into an intelligent man of stature, who has risen to the challenge of sorting out the train-wreck of our economy.
CHANCELLOR George Osborne may take some comfort, as he puts the finishing touches to Wednesday's Budget, that Matthew was a tax collector before he became a saint.
Getting cover for travel or driving, or even a credit card, can be a problem for older people
The best deals seen in years are emerging in a fight for new customers
Complaints about claims are rising
THE universal pension, good thing though it could one day be, always reminds me of that anthem of the peace movement, Donovan's Universal Soldier.
NORTHERN Rock has become the latest lender to offer loans to home buyers with small deposits, as banks and building societies try to kick-start the property market.
NO TAXATION without representation is a cornerstone of democracy. But taxation with representation isn't much fun either.
PUBLIC sector workers are being softened up to expect a 3 per cent increase in their pension contributions, and a move to a career average rather than final salary scheme.
A CATFIGHT has broken out, and I'm not talking about the war between Downing Street's new tabby Larry the Lion and Roland Rat.
I RECENTLY booked a flight with one of the budget airlines for 50p, or that's where the price began. Naturally, I wasn't so gullible as to believe that 50p is what I would end up paying.
THE Green Budget from the Institute for Fiscal Studies caused a stir last week when it largely supported the Coalition's deficit reduction strategy but called on the government to create contingency plans in case things turn ugly.
ON BOXING Day this column speculated that the icy weather had killed off the economy as surely as it did for Captain Oates ("Retailers feel chill as blizzards spoil spending splurge ahead of VAT hike"). How right we were.
FRIDAY was like Groundhog Day. Tony Blair going over Iraq for the umpteenth time and Ed Balls back in charge of Labour's economic policy. Every time you think you have finally shaken off the Blair/Brown years, they creep up behind and give you the fright of your life.
OUR household insurance premium has come in, and blow me down if it hasn't just doubled, which seems a bit steep. Steeper still is the fact that when we shop around, quotes all come in the same ball park.