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A simple start, absolutely

By the end of January, the main pension industry bodies will have a gentlemen&#39s agreement with the Treasury that pension simplification will go ahead – with a lifetime fund limit of £1.4m – so they can get on with preparing for A-Day in 2005, leaving the National Audit Office to go through the motions on the figures.

The anniversary of last year&#39s low point, March 12, will see the FTSE 100 at 4,500 and a rash of fund managers launching advertisements trumpeting 37 per cent absolute returns for the year.

Easter will see the Treasury decide that it is less hassle to leave the stakeholder cap at 1 per cent while the Department for Work and Pensions will celebrate year-end business figures with a press release applauding a slashing in the number of stakeholder empty boxes from 85 per cent to 84 per cent.

May will see Wolverhampton Wanderers avoid relegation, swine will fly in their many millions and the summer will be wet but England will win in Portugal, causing a surge in the beer and pizza sectors.

The autumn will see a handful of IFAs deciding to multi-tie just in time to find that by next Christmas they have spent their golden handshake and realise why they left the tied side in the first place.


Independent view

Dare I say it, but the pension review still lingers on like a dark shadow over the reputation of pensions and everyone connected with them. The public have been left with a nasty taste and severe doubts about what to do for the best.Having said that, we have definitely noticed an upturn in morale among […]

Consumer champion Sheila McKechnie dies at 55

Consumers&#39 Association director Dame Sheila McKechnie has died after a long illness.McKechnie, who died last week aged 55, had lived with cancer since 1997 but maintained an active role as director of the CA until last November.She was an outspoken campaigner who took the side of consumers in many confrontations with the financial services business.She […]

Media reports of Standard problems exaggerated – Reid

National newspaper reports of concerns over the financial strength of Standard Life are an irresponsible overreaction says Syndaxi Financial Planning partner Robert Reid. Reid says it is to be expected that the FSA would probe the way Standard handles its accounts and says to extrapolate that to say investors should consider moving funds away from […]

Aberdeen sells NVM in management buyout

Northern Venture Managers has been sold to its senior staff for around £3m by Aberdeen Asset Management, which acquired it as part of a deal for Edinburgh Fund Managers last October. The buyout was led by managing director Alistair Conn and investment director Tim Levett, who say they are relieved to have put the company […]

Rayner Spencer Mills: Why we rate the Artemis US Select Fund

Ken Rayner and Graham O¹Neill from RSM explain why they rate the fund, its investment process and how it can be used in a portfolio The Artemis US Select Fund became a RSM ‘rated’ fund earlier this year. In this video, Ken Rayner and Graham O’Neill explain the fund’s investment approach, why they rate it, […]


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