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Advisers flag doubt over DB market performance

Three quarters of advisers feel the defined benefit transfer market is struggling to match supply with demand and work effectively, research shows.

Figures from Aegon found two thirds of surveyed advisers who currently provide DB advice say there are not enough specialists to meet customer demand.

These figures follow the FCA’s reveal of a recent data collection exercise which found 69 per cent of those advised on DB are recommended to transfer out.

The watchdog flagged the results as “deeply concerning and disappointing” and repeated its view that advisers should always start a review process with the consideration that transferring out is not suitable.

Aegon says 60 per cent of adviser respondents to its research believe the FCA regulations err too far on not recommending transfers, however.

Pensions director Steven Cameron says: “Transferring is not the right way forward for the majority of people with DB pensions, but the market is not working effectively if people are unable to obtain advice to explore their options.”

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Aegon also currently backs the introduction of a triage which would allow advisers to offer customers more help to asses whether they need advice on a potential transfer, Cameron adds.

The FCA’s figures showed a total 58,086 clients out of 234,951 did not proceed to full advice after a triage process.

Cameron says: “Unless the current log jam situation is eased, we’ll be left with an increasing number of people whose advice needs can’t be met because of a lack of supply, leaving them unable to explore their options, a situation which is in no one’s interest.”


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