FCA eyes Aviva/Friends Life merger probe

The FCA is investigating abnormal share price movements around Aviva’s £5.6bn merger with Friends Life, according to reports.

The Financial Times reports the FCA has asked investment bankers on the deal to disclose any contact to discuss the merger ahead of the announcement.

The FCA and Aviva declined to comment, although a source close to the insurer says it is normal policy for the regulator to investigate when a merger deal is leaked prior to being formally announced.

Reports of the deal first emerged in November last year, with Friends’ share price climbing 6 per cent after the firms admitted advanced talks over a potential deal.

The deal, which was finally completed in March, created the UK’s largest insurance and savings business.