From everyday news to essential guides, the Editorial team does it all and more, providing you with the information you need to make all manner of financial decisions. So, if you’ve ever been curious who’s behind the words you read on Moneyfacts.co.uk, here’s our top team.
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Leanne Macardle graduated from the University of East Anglia in 2006 with a degree in Psychosocial Sciences, but quickly changed direction and jumped into the world of finance instead. A stint at Aviva (or Norwich Union before the name change) and a few years of freelancing followed, before joining the editorial department at Moneyfacts Group as sub-editor in 2013, and taking on the positions of reporter and senior staff writer thereafter. Leanne now oversees the editorial direction of Moneyfacts.co.uk, and is also the main voice behind the Weekend Moneyfacts and Savers Friend newsletters.
Dr Lieke Braadbaart completed a PhD in Cognitive Neuroscience at the University of Aberdeen before turning to the world of publishing, where she initially worked for medical and hobby publishers before joining Moneyfacts Group as sub-editor in 2016. Following a promotion to online writer, Lieke now curates Moneyfacts.co.uk’s news and product news sections, as well as writing and updating various guides and other relevant information. She also occasionally asks for your views on various finance topics through quick and easy surveys, and greatly appreciates your responses.
Tim Leonard graduated from Nottingham University with a degree in Industrial Economics in 1999, before heading straight into the financial sector working at Virgin Money. After five years gaining front-line insight into the savings, investment and pensions industry, Tim joined Moneyfacts in 2004, initially as a researcher, before quickly becoming the senior writer for the company’s IFA-facing publications, writing across almost all areas of personal finance. While Tim focuses most of his attention on the print side of things, writing across the range of Moneyfacts titles and Treasury Reports, he occasionally shares his wealth of knowledge with the audience of Moneyfacts.co.uk.
Sarah’s interest in the financial sector started at a young age, winning a national stock market challenge while still at school. She went on to graduate from the University of Lincoln with a BA Honours degree in English. From there, Sarah worked as a sub-editor in London for a procurement intelligence company, before moving back home and joining the Moneyfacts team in June 2018. Reading across the wealth of material produced, she now oversees copy for the magazine, Treasury Reports and online content to name a few!
Meet the minds behind the impartial data and insightful statistics that you can find across Moneyfacts.co.uk. Our residential experts each have many years of experience in their respective fields, which the Editorial team makes grateful use of to bring you unique product and rate insight.
Mortgage Analytics Manager
Darren Cook studied Economics and Business Economics at the University of South Africa as well as Banking Risk Techniques through Damelin School of Banking, and is currently completing a Bachelor of Laws through The Open University. Darren has over 30 years’ experience within the financial services sector beginning back in 1988 at the First National Bank of Southern Africa, obtaining a wealth of retail and business banking management skills, knowledge and experience. He returned to the UK in 2000 and spent a short time with NatWest before joining Moneyfacts Group in 2004. Darren has held the positions of Head of Mortgages, Head of Press & Public Relations and Insight & Communications within the Group and he enjoys nothing more than cutting to the chase of a complex UK mortgage environment to get to the heart of the important issues.
Savings Analytics Manager
Rachel Thrussell left school at 16 and went straight to work at Barclays fulfilling various roles. After 14 years of gaining essential experience at the bank, she joined Moneyfacts in June 1993, starting in the savings department and working her way up to become Head of Savings. As Savings Analytics Manager, Rachel is one of the foremost authorities on the savings market in the UK, and is often called upon by organisations such as the NS&I for her expertise. Her responsibilities include producing the Savings Treasury Reports and Savers Friend, compiling the Savings round-up page in Moneyfacts Magazine, coordinating new listings for the data collection department, scrutinising nominees for the various Awards, and anything else savings related.
Star Ratings & Personal Finance Analytics Manager
Samantha Owens graduated from The University of Hertfordshire with a degree in Applied Economics in 1995. She began her career working in pensions at Aviva before moving to Lloyds Bank to gain experience in personal customer banking. Samantha joined Moneyfacts in 1999 as a savings researcher, then went on to work in all areas of research and in the press department before managing the research teams. She now specialises in the analysis of data, creating the Moneyfacts Annual Star Ratings and Daily News Ratings, writing the Credit Card Treasury Report, and content design for online systems, for both the consumer and businesses.