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Last Updated: Friday, 15 October, 2004, 16:43 GMT 17:43 UK
Saturday, 16 October, 2004

BBC Radio 4's Money Box was broadcast on Saturday, 16 October, 2004 at 1204 BST.

The programme was repeated on Sunday, 17 October, at 2102 BST.

An overwhelming majority of investors have voted in favour of Abbey's takeover by Spain's Santander Central Hispano.

But despite the majority backing, Abbey's board faced heavy criticism and constant heckling at the meeting on Thursday.

Jessica Dunbar reported.

Further information:

Stamp duty

A campaign co-ordinated by the West Bromwich Building Society is calling for the government to reform stamp duty.

Do you think the threshold should be raised?
Are there other ways the duty could be reformed?

The Raise the Roof campaign is arguing that the starting threshold for the tax should be raised to 150,000 to help first-time buyers.

Andrew Messenger, Chief Executive of West Bromwich Building Society explained the case to Paul Lewis.

And Stuart Adam, research economist from the Institute for Fiscal Studies examined the tax implications if it were to happen.

Further information:

New savings war begins

Halifax and Abbey are set to fight it out for savers, after both began offering a staggering 7% in interest on money paid by standing order into a monthly savings account for one year.

To get the rate, customers will have to save at least 20 a month with Abbey, and 25 a month with Halifax, and leave it there for a year.

These accounts are for regular savers, not those with one-off lump-sums. And Halifax is only giving the rate to new customers.

Further information:

Producer: Jennifer Clarke
Presenter: Paul Lewis
Reporter: Louise Greenwood
Web Producer: Nathalie Knowles

Money Box



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