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ABI sets out standards for Omo

The ABI is issuing a statement of good practice recommending minimum

standards for pension providers dealing with policyholders about to retire.

The move aims to pre-empt the FSA&#39s planned new rules for providers which

are set to force them to clearly highlight the open market option, well

ahead of policyholders making their final decision on buying an annuity.

The ABI&#39s statement includes the requirement for companies to explain to

consumers the availability of the Omo and that by shopping around they may

be able to buy an annuity which provides a higher income than that from

their existing provider.

The statement also recommends companies to outline the range of options

available on retirement, including the different types of annuity products

available. It also sets minimum standards for the timing and content of

letters sent to policyholders whose pensions are nearing maturity.

ABI director general Mary Francis says: “For most policyholders, buying an

annuity with the lump sum they have built up in a pension fund will be one

of most important investments they will ever make. The statement will make

sure policyholders have the information they need to make an informed

choice about their annuity.”

The ABI has written to life office chief executives to help them weather

the media storm which has been generated by the Equitable Life crisis,

including its latest bonus rate cuts.

The letter echoes earlier media briefing guidance designed to ensure the

press and public separate the crisis at Equitable Life from with-profits


ABI details, p9


FSA forces lenders to point to rival ranges

The FSA has been criticised by mortgage lenders for effectively forcingthem to promote the products of rival providers on their pre-saleillustration documents. Lenders are furious with the FSA for insisting they draw attention to theregulator&#39s mortgage comparative tables on their pre-sale productinformation as they say it will encourage borrowers to look at rivalproducts. Lenders have […]

Pavilion moves up a gear

Pavilion Asset Management has made its debut on the investment trust scene with the Pavilion geared recovery trust.This split-capital investment trust aims to provide a combination of income and growth by investing in undervalued stocks mainly in the UK and in the shares of other investment trusts.A growth portfolio makes up 60 per cent of […]

City Assurance Consultants fined £50,000

The PIA has slapped a £50,000 fine on IFA City Assurance Consultants of The White House, 100 Wimbledon Hill Road, London for pensions review failings. The firm, which has also been officially reprimanded and ordered to pay PIA costs of £4,000, is guilty of a number of failings identified in regulatory visits between January and […]

Business announcements less negative, says KPMG

The downturn in the UK economy may not be as bad as some analysts fear, according to figures compiled for KPMG by Mandis Information Services which shows fewer profit warnings being issued.Negative announcements across 21 sectors of the UK economy for the first six months of 2001 fell by 22 per cent compared to the […]


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