Royal and SunAlliance (R&SA) has had problems in recent weeks. But its share price hit a thermal last week, rising considerably off the back of rumours that group chief executive Bob Mendelsohn had resigned.

A little churlish of the market players perhaps- but should Mendelsohn practise what he preaches?

Poor old Paul Spencer, former chief executive of R&SA's UK group, had the rug pulled from under him after his failure to sell the life and pensions division. Backchat has heard that Spencer's career may be back on the corporate highway. It is rumoured that he was sounded out for the Kwik-Fit chief executive post.