The Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) is investigating the Shropshire-based financial advice firm, Nationwide Benefit Consultants (NBC). 

The firm acted as an appointed representative (AR) of Joseph Oliver Mediação de Seguros, Lda, a Portuguese firm regulated by the Instituto de Seguros de Portugal. Joseph Oliver Mediação de Seguros, Lda passported into the UK under the Insurance Distribution Directive, according to the FSCS.

NBC, trading as The Pension Reporter, was incorporated on 15 December 2011, according to Companies House. It ceased to be registered as an AR with the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) on 8 April 2016 and was subsequently dissolved on 14 August 2018, according to the FSCS.

The firm was involved with advising on and arranging pension transfers with subsequent investment into the Trafalgar Multi Asset Fund, which is the subject of a Serious Fraud Office (SFO) investigation.

The SFO investigation includes Capita Oak Pension and Henley Retirement Benefit schemes, and it said that more than 2,000 individual investors were likely affected by the alleged fraud, all of which involved the investment of their pension funds. The amounts invested total approximately £120m, according to the SFO.

As part of the investigation, the SFO is encouraging members of the public who have invested in these schemes over the period 2011 to 2017 to complete a questionnaire.

The FSCS has been working with the FCA and the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS), it said, to investigate the activities of the firm. The lifeboat fund is now considering whether valid claims exist under its rules in connection with NBCL's activities, it added.

Earlier this month, the FSCS announced it was investigating the Irish financial advice firm, Wellington Court Financial Services, which was involved in pension transfers to failed self-invested personal pension (SIPP) operator Guinness Mahon Trust Corporation.