View more on these topics

Banking on a big shift in power

The banks are crossing the i&#39s and dotting the t&#39s in their silent coup over British financial services.

A merger of the ABI and the British Bankers&#39 Association is now on the cards, a move which is opposed by this newspaper.

Of course, the banks and insurers will say they are simply recognising the situation on the ground. Many insurers are bank-owned or have significant bank distribution.

It is true that the balance of power in distribution may be shifting. Banks expect to take a increasing share of the investment and pension market with the regulatory playing field due to be tilted dramatically in their favour.

But how much will they take? There is a danger that the merger will lead to a trade body ignoring or even misrepresenting the needs of the main distrib-ution channel – intermediaries – and their clients. Those who are great believers in bringing costs down should look carefully at how term insurance providers which concentrate on banking distribution have lost market share among intermediaries because it costs too much.

Banks have neatly avoided any blame for “commission bias” despite distributing significant amounts of the products under scrutiny.

To get things in perspective, the merger makes sense for those involved. But for those now realising just what a mess the 1 per cent “yes men” have left the industry in – thought to have included some banks – a merger may not make sense.

If the message coming out of the insurers&#39 trade body gets distorted following a merger, brokers should be worried but so should fund managers,the regulator and the Government too.

Recommended

Widows shows how to save tax

Scottish Widows is offering a toolkit to help IFAs capitalise on tax-saving opportunities for their clients&#39 personal and stakeholder pensions.The Maximise the Tax Factor marketing pack is aimed at allowing IFAs to identify potential business while highlighting the tax benefits of pension savings.It contains information the benefits of a pension as a long-term tax-efficient savings […]

Mortgage Express one-year buy-to-let fixed

Mortgage Express one-year buy-to-let fixed Type: Buy-to-let fixed Fixed term: 3 June 2003Fixed rate: 2.99%Minimum loan: £40,000Maximum loan: £300,000 up to 85% LTV, £400,000 up to 70% LTV, £1m up to 60% LTVRental income: 130% of gross monthly mortgage payment Arrangement fee: £325Redemption fee: Six month&#39s interest at underlying variable rate (base rate + 1.75%) […]

Pension world is full of unmarried couples

In my last article, I started to visit or revisit a number of pension developments relating to sexual relationships, in particular, the rights of partners of pension scheme members to benefits from that scheme.I would now like to develop this theme away from the issue of part-timers – involving sex discrimination, primarily against women, who […]

FSA patrols high street on loans and general cover

The FSA is setting up a high-street division with responsibility for the regulation of mortgages and general insurance.The division will be in operation from April 2 and will have three principal responsibilities – designing policy for the regulation of the mortgage and general insurance sectors, authorisation of firms active in those sectors and the supervision […]

The Perils of Passive Investing

The era of loose monetary policy created an environment that rewarded passive investors in the US. However, with the US raising interest rates for the first time since 2006, Felix Wintle explains why he believes active investing will be more important than ever. In the video Felix discusses: The rising cost of capital and its […]

Newsletter

News and expert analysis straight to your inbox

Sign up

Comments

    Leave a comment

    Close

    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

    Email: customerservices@moneymarketing.com