View more on these topics

Advisers surprised by Isa sales drop

IFAs have voiced their surprise at last week’s IMA statistics, which revealed net sales of Isas in the 2011-12 tax year almost halved on the previous year.

Net sales for the full tax year of about £2.1bn were reported, compared with net sales of more than £4bn for the previous two tax years.

Net retail sales of just £6m were reported during the first quarter of the year.

Chelsea Financial Services managing director Darius McDermott says: “Sales were at a lower level, but ours were nothing like 50 per cent down; we were down about 15 per cent on new business.”

Dennehy Weller & Co managing director Brian Dennehy questioned whether the figures are accurate.

“It is surprising. Our numbers were up 20 per cent on the previous year,” he says.

“One presumes the numbers are accurate, but are there any flaws in the IMA stats?

“What if money comes out of an unwrapped product and into an Isa, do they pick that up? Are the numbers foolproof?”

The IMA confirmed that transfers made from one fund group to another are accounted for, as are transfers from one fund to another within the same fund group.

Tom Stevenson, an investment director at Fidelity Worldwide Investment, says their experience has mirrored that of the industry.

“It is probably a continued response to last year’s volatility in the markets. August to October really unsettled investors and it takes time to get over extreme volatility,” he says.

However, Stevenson points out that while the two previous tax years were strong in terms of Isa sales, the five years prior to that all saw negative net sales for Isas. “In that context, it’s not too bad a result,” he says.

Graham Bentley, the head of proposition at Skandia, says a slowdown in sales was to be expected.

“Our numbers are lower than last year, but have held up quite well. Nobody is screaming out about their numbers. It is hardly surprising given what a tough year it has been for customers.”

Many clients invest at the start of the tax year, Bentley says, so the second half of this year could reveal an uptick in sales.

McDermott says investors have been taking advantage of the recent market dip. “In April our sales were up over 5 per cent on last year, which was also a strong month – it’s been off the scale,” he says.



FSA fines wholesale insurer £3.3m

The FSA has fined the London-based subsidiary of a Japanese insurance firm £3.3m for serious corporate governance failings, and fined and banned its former executive chairman £119,303. Mitsui Sumitomo Insurance Company (Europe) is the London-based division of Mitsui Sumitomo Insurance Company, part of one of the world’s largest non-life insurance groups. MSIEu historically supplied wholesale […]

L&G set to announce new chief exec

Legal & General is expected to announce that finance director Nigel Wilson will replace Tim Breedon as chief executive, according to Sky News. A report suggests Wilson could be named as Breedon’s successor this week. L&G announced last September that Breedon would be stepping down from his role at the end of this year. Breedon […]

80% of people who are HIV+ unaware they can get life assurance

Around 80 per cent of people who are HIV positive are unaware they can buy life assurance, according to research from medical financial advice firm Unusual Risks Mortgage and Insurance Services. According to the firm, around 50 per cent of insurance providers now offer life assurance to cover people living with HIV. Life assurance products […]

Osborne to set out bank reform plans

Chancellor George Osborne will set out plans for structural reform of the banking sector in line with the recommendations of the Independent Commission on Banking in his Mansion House speech next month. The Treasury is expected to publish a white paper before Osborne’s speech on June 14. The ICB’s final report, published in September, calls […]

Passport - thumbnail

Thinking of expanding overseas?

Whether you’re a small company or an established larger employer, expanding overseas into emerging markets can be an extremely attractive prospect for growing your business. However, with this comes a duty-of-care requirement to any staff based overseas.


News and expert analysis straight to your inbox

Sign up


    Leave a comment


    Why register with Money Marketing ?

    Providing trusted insight for professional advisers.  Since 1985 Money Marketing has helped promote and analyse the financial adviser community in the UK and continues to be the trusted industry brand for independent insight and advice.

    News & analysis delivered directly to your inbox
    Register today to receive our range of news alerts including daily and weekly briefings

    Money Marketing Events
    Be the first to hear about our industry leading conferences, awards, roundtables and more.

    Research and insight
    Take part in and see the results of Money Marketing's flagship investigations into industry trends.

    Have your say
    Only registered users can post comments. As the voice of the adviser community, our content generates robust debate. Sign up today and make your voice heard.

    Register now

    Having problems?

    Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3712

    Lines are open Monday to Friday 9:00am -5.00pm