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Actuaries face cloak being torn away

Gordon Brown has not followed Ruth Kelly&#39s lead, where she suggested that Equitable Life was someone else&#39s problem. Instead, he has decided to use Penrose to launch a full review on the role and future of the actuarial profession.

The review will be led by Sir Derek Morris, an acad-emic and economist, and will have the key objective of modernising the actuarial profession and promoting a more open market and competitive actuarial advice.

Considering that Myners is also looking at corporate governance, is this a sign of the end for the in-house actuary?

This is a likely outcome of the review, as this profession has not moved with the times and has been responsible for many of the problems we face today. The track record of the profession in monitoring itself or applying professional standards and discipline is not impressive. I cannot recall any actuaries being brought to book, for UKPI, London Life, NPI or Equitable.

Actuaries have been able to hide behind the cloak of mathematical opacity. They have been proven wanting over the last few years when the investment market was not available to bail them out. We need them either to be independent or overseen by others.

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