View more on these topics

Advice dilemma as ministers differ

The pension industry is pressing the Treasury and DSS to clarify if advice is needed for stakeholder, with senior ministers adopting apparently contradictory positions.

IFAs and providers say the Government must clarify the situation this week as stakeholder launches or risk leaving consumers in the dark.

Social Security Secretary Alistair Darling is on the record in a series of interviews over the last two years saying people buying a pension should seek advice.

But in a letter to Tory MP John Randall obtained by Money Marketing, Treasury economic secretary Melanie Johnson says that consumers should be able to get a good deal on stakeholder pensions without advice.

The letter says: “Whilst financial advice can be valuable, it is not a necessary condition for all savings and investments that are suited to people&#39s individual needs and circumstances.

“For example, Catmarked products and stakeholder pensions are products whose standards mean investors should be able to get a good deal without needing to pay for advice.”

In a letter to Money Marketing, Scottish Equitable pensions development director Stewart Ritchie advises John-son to check with what he believes is Darling&#39s proadvice position. Darling is Ritchie&#39s local MP in Edinburgh.

IFAs have also written to the Treasury asking for clarification of the situation.

A Treasury spokesman says: “the point made by the economic secretary is not that advice is never necessary but that it is not always need for all savings and investments.”

A DSS spokesman says: “We have always been clear on our position and it is the same as the Treasury&#39s, which is it that is up to the individual whether they feel they need advice or not.”

Annuity Bureau director Ronnie Lymburn says: “It shows the Government pretends to consult and then says things that are diametrically opposed.”

Recommended

iShares – iBloomberg European Telecoms

Monday, 2nd April 2001.Type: Exchange traded fund.Aim: Growth linked to the Bloomberg European investable telecoms index.Minimum investment: Subject to negotiation with stockbroker.Maximum investment: None.Investment split: 100 per cent linked to the Bloomberg European investable telecoms index.Place of registration: Ireland.Isa link: Yes.Pep transfers: Yes.Charges: Annual 0.5 per cent.Commission: None.Tel: 0845 3577000. 

Fidelity stretches its Isa lead

Fidelity looks set to retain its Isa season sales title convincingly as this year&#39s likely winners and losers are revealed in a new IFA poll.The Keydata survey, which polled 4,000 IFAs, reveals ABN Amro as the unexpected second-placed provider following strong performance from Nigel Thomas&#39s UK growth fund and the launch of a UK select […]

Govt Actuary in warning on compulsory income cover due to stakeholder effects

The Government Actuary says income protection insurance may need to be compulsory as a result of stakeholder.Speaking at a Unum-sponsored symposium on disability in London last week, Gov- ernment Actuary Chris Day-kin claimed many employers will no longer provide staff with protection for long-term illness or disability, leaving the Government to fill the gap with […]

Radice outlines routes to redress

Equitable Life Treasury select committee chairman Giles Radice has outlined three possible ways of compensating policyholders over the debacle. In an interview for BBC&#39s Moneybox programme last week, Radice was asked if policyholders could consider suing Equitable for compensation on the grounds that they were misinformed about the company&#39s true financial situation. Although the Treasury […]

Newsletter

News and expert analysis straight to your inbox

Sign up

Comments

    Leave a comment