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UK FSCS to compensate only 159 London Capital & Finance bondholders

The U.K. Financial Services Compensation Scheme said it can only protect 159 bondholders out of a total of 11,600 investors who purchased bonds from defunct company London Capital & Finance PLC.

LCF filed for voluntary administration in December 2018 after the U.K. Financial Conduct Authority ordered it to cease conducting all regulated activities and to withdraw promotional materials for so-called mini-bonds that were at the center of the company's £236 million collapse. The collapse put investors' money at risk and sparked a regulatory probe.

The FSCS does not usually cover mini-bonds but said that some investors were eligible for compensation because they were provided misleading advice. The compensation scheme said it will pay the 159 bondholders eligible for compensation by February-end. Investors could receive up to £50,000 under the industry-funded compensation scheme, the Financial Times reported previously.

The British compensation fund, however, said it could not recompense 283 bondholders who entered into transactions with LCF before it became an authorized financial services company on June 7, 2016.

The FSCS, while acknowledging that many investors will claim to be given incorrect information about investing in LCF bonds, said that being provided incorrect information on its own does not constitute misleading advice. As a result, the FSCS expects many bondholders to be ineligible for compensation.

The fund said it will start reviewing these advice claims in the first quarter and will aim to provide a further update by the end of February.