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A suitability lesson for Coutts from 1957

A suitability lesson for Coutts from 1957

The regulatory team at Coutts has certainly got its work cut out over the next few months.

Last week chief executive Michael Morley told Wealth Manager it would be analysing every single investment dating back to 1957 as it issued a suitability alert to its clients.

So what exactly was a suitable investment in the year Harold Macmillan took over as prime minster from Sir Anthony Eden?  The year the UK ceded control of the gold coast and Boeing 707 flew for the first time?

This 1957 cartoon made by members of the New York Stock Exchange highlights the dilemmas investors faced in those days.

The cartoon’s hero is  Fred Finchley, who mulls what to do after his boss gives him a $60 a month pay rise. Should he keep the money in a bean can where any wandering groundhog could eat is his hard earned rise is one of his immediate concerns.

Fred is married with two children and wants to be able to get the cash working for him so he can enjoy the finer things in life with is family.

While this is pro the US stockmarket and Fred may not necessarily have been the Queens’ banker’s typical client in 1957, it gives a fascinating insight into the relatively uncomplicated investment needs of 57 years ago.

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