The Anonymous Widower

Insurers Seek Rule Change To Invest In Green Power

The title of this post is the same as that of an article in today’s copy of The Times.

This is the first paragraph.

The mouthpiece for the insurance industry has called on the regulator to overhaul rules to make it easier to invest in green energy projects, such as wind farms and solar power.

Green energy projects are bad investments for the first few years, as they just burn money during construction. After that, the wind or solar farm, just produces electricity, which gives an adequate return fpr perhaps around thirty years.

As the rules stand, the returns in the construction phase are a dodgy investment.

The Prudential Regulation Authority, who make the rules, was setup in 2013, with probably a bunch of dinosaurs drawing up the rules, based on the past not the future.

These figures show the total energy generated by wind power for the last few years.

  • 2008 – 5.4 GHh
  • 2009 – 6.3 GWh
  • 2010 – 7.9 GWh
  • 2011 – 12.7 GWh
  • 2012 – 20.7 GWh
  • 2013 – 24.5 GWh
  • 2014 – 28.1 GWh
  • 2015 – 40.4 GWh
  • 2016 – 37.4 GWh
  • 2017 – 49.6 GWh


  1. Between 2013 and 2017 electricity generated by wind power has doubled.
  2. In 2017, seventeen percent of our electricity was generated by wind.

These figures show the total energy generated by solar power for the last few years.

  • 2008 – 0.17 GHh
  • 2009 – 0.20 GWh
  • 2010 – .0.33 GWh
  • 2011 – 2.6 GWh
  • 2012 – 1.3 GWh
  • 2013 – 2.0 GWh
  • 2014 – 4.1 GWh
  • 2015 – 7.6 GWh
  • 2016 – 10.3 GWh
  • 2017 – 11.5 GWh


  1. Between 2013 and 2017 electricity generated by solar power has increased fivefold.
  2. In 2017, 3.4 percent of our electricity was generated by the sun.

This paragraph from Wind Power In The UK on Wikipedia, shows the major growth in offshore wind power.

The total offshore wind power capacity installed in the United Kingdom as of February 2019 is 8,183 MW, the largest in the world. The United Kingdom became the world leader of offshore wind power generation in October 2008 when it overtook Denmark. It also has the largest offshore wind farm in the world, the 175-turbine London Array wind farm, located off the Kent coast.

I don’t think the Prudential Regulation Authority saw that one coming.


The rules should be changed



March 11, 2019 Posted by | Finance, World | , , , , | Leave a comment

Would You Want To Buy Part Of A Used Insurance Company From This Man?

There is an article in today’s Times, which is entitled Arron Banks Wants To Sell £4million Stake In Firm.

My answer would be a big no!

November 6, 2018 Posted by | Business, Finance | , , | Leave a comment

What A Plonker!

Of all the stupid road accidents that happen every year, yesterday’s one in Kent must rank as the most stupid.

This article on the BBC, which is entitled M20 motorway shut after lorry crash causes bridge collapse, gives full details.

There will be a lot of questions asked about this digger and as Dellboy would say, its right plonker of a driver.

  • Why didn’t the truck and the digger have a specialist escort?
  • Did the driver understand metres and/or feet and inches?
  • What is the name of the company responsible, so that I can sue for a ruined holiday, spent camping on the M20?

At least the driver didn’t kill or serious hurt anybody, although it must have been a close run think for the motorcyclist.

A couple of weeks ago, I was seriously delayed because of another plonker, who crashed with a train on a level crossing at Waterbeach.

I think we could bring in a law, which meant that everybody, who is delayed by anything like this incident can contact a central insurance number or web site, where you can easily add your claim to the pile.

After all if my train is late, I can get a refund and have been able to for years. Recently, I was travelling  on a Cheap Day Single ticket from Manchester to London, which arrived in London about two hours late, due to an unspecified problem. I filled in a form on the Virgin web site, when I got home and I had my compensation in a week or so.

The insurance companies have the power to knock some sense firmly into the minds of these idiots, who endanger everyone’s lives.


August 28, 2016 Posted by | Transport | , , | 2 Comments

Read This!

This article is a must read!

July 1, 2015 Posted by | Finance | , | Leave a comment

Could You Use Zopa As An Annuity?

In this discussion, I’m using Zopa as it the peer-to-peer lender I know best. But the analysis could probably apply to your own favourite.

Zopa also has the following features.

1. Your Investment Is Probably Safe

I say probably, as occasionally, one of my loans has gone into default, but now Zopa  safeguards your money. Here’s what they say on the website.

Earn great returns on your savings with peace of mind. The Safeguard is a fund designed to step in and give you back all your money, plus interest, in the rare event a borrower cannot repay. Find out more about the Safeguard fund.

But even so, my losses on older loans before Safeguard have been about four percent of the total interest I have earned on my investment.

2. Automatic Reinvestment

If you should so choose, you can re-invest any money that is credited to your account because of interest earned or loans repaid.

I don’t use this feature, unless I’m going away for a few days and probably won’t be checking my Zopa account.

I normally re-invest any money return manually.

But the automatic reinvestment can be easily switched in and out.

3. You Are In Control

If you want to add more money to your Zopa pot, it is just a simple transfer.

If you want to remove some of the repayments or interest, it is just a simple transfer out and this has got faster recently.

4. You Are Not Part Of The Loan Management Process

On the other hand, you are not part of the loan management process and so you don’t get involved with any tedious paperwork or micro-management. As I have thousands of loans in Zopa, it’s a process I want no part of it.

As a software man of a certain experience, I would prefer to trust well-written software Rather than my own judgement.

5. One Percent Fees To Savers

Click here to see what Zopa says about fees to savers.

My use of Zopa is to have a sizeable pot there, which I add to, as and when I have spare funds available.  Usually, this is around the 12th of each month, as that is after all of my monthly bills have been paid.

Recently, I have needed extra funds for work on my house, so I’ve withdrawn money from Zopa at times, instead of re-investing it.

So to return to the question I asked about can Zopa be used as an annuity!

Suppose you invest a sum and you want this to give you an income of say £3,000 a month, which you wanted to be paid on the 20th of each month.

At the start of each month, you would switch off Zopa’s auto top up feature, which means that any repayments and interest go in your holding account.

Then a couple of days before the 20th, you transfer the required £3,000 out of Zopa into your bank account. Any surplus would be reinvested and auto top-up could be switched on again.

Obviously, you would need sufficient funds in Zopa to generate at least £3,000 of interest and repayments in a month.

If I pro-rata my mature Zopa portfolio, then I would estimate that a pot of about £100,000 would be needed to extract £3,000 a month.  But don’t take that as gospel, as it needs a proper calculation to be done.

I’ll be working on it.

On the other hand using Zopa as an annuity has lots of advantages.

1. Flexibility

If say one month, your horse has just come in and you’ve won several thousand in the 4:15 at Kempton, you can leave the money to accumulate.

And if in another, your car needs repair, you can take out everything you can.

2. You Can Cash It All In

I often wonder what would have happened, when my wife got cancer, if we hadn’t had any money or two sons who could drop everything and help. It would have been difficult in the extreme.

But a Zopa fund could have been liquidated without penalty and used as income in the last months or years of my wife’s life.

You can sell on good loans, but I’d have just not bother to reinvest any money and transferred it all out of Zopa.

3. Transfers To And From Zopa Are Going To Get Faster

This is something that is happening and will improve all our lives in the future.

But it particularly helps with an investment like Zopa, where you’re effectively using it as a quick-access deposit account.

It wouldn’t be fair not to state the disadvantages.

1. You Can Earn More With Other Peer-to-Peer Sites

There are always other better ways of earning higher returns, but then they usually come with a higher risk profile.

It’s your money, so do the research and make your choice.

After all we all know the old joke about the best way to  make a small fortune! Give a large one to a financial advisor!


March 21, 2014 Posted by | Finance | , , | 2 Comments

It’s All Our Fault!

BBC Breakfast had an interview this morning, with a guy from the insurance industry.

He blamed the poor quality of annuity products on the fact that we’re living longer, low interest rates and customers being more intelligent.

Just as we’ve had peer-to-peer lending for banking, we need a clever person to think up a killer application, that looks like an annuity, but gives a better return with no fees to insurance fat cats.

The cream should stay with the insured.

March 21, 2014 Posted by | Finance, World | | Leave a comment

Cash-For Crash By The Busload

This story must be the ultimate cash-for-crash story. Here’s the intro.

A bogus bus crash was staged in Sheffield so 26 passengers could make fake whiplash claims – all set up by organised conmen trying to defraud insurance firms, a court heard.

As I don’t have a car or car insurance, I’m glad that I don’t have to pay for these crooked claims.

August 17, 2013 Posted by | Transport | , , | Leave a comment


I don’t drive anymore, as my eyesight deteriorated badly due to a stroke.

I object to all the money that is wasted by the NHS in dealing with so many of these non-existent lawyer-driven whiplash claims.

People should just drive a bit more carefully!

Or use public transport like I do!  The great thing about public transport in many parts of London and especially this one, is staff and fellow passengers often make it a friendly experience. Perhaps, Transport for London, should sell silly hats like this one, in aid of charity!

December 11, 2012 Posted by | Transport | , , , , | 1 Comment

Car Insurance To Be Investigated

Does it bother me? Of course not! It wouldn’t have bothered me, if I had a car, as I didn’t ever make due to my own driving. It’s all here on the BBC.

But then the real problem about car insurance, is all the small time racketeers like accident claims solicitors, car repairers and other crooks, who ambulance chase any accident or incident.

It should be made a criminal offence to pay commission to any of these leeches.

September 28, 2012 Posted by | Transport | , , , | Leave a comment

Mobile Phone Insurance

I like this post from Moneywise, saying that mobile phone insurance is the next scam.

I don’t have it, as it would just cost too much to insure a Nokia 6310i

July 10, 2012 Posted by | News | , , , | Leave a comment