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Condemnation for stakeholder

Stakeholder is a non-starter because there is no room in its charging structure for advice, Conservative pension spokeswoman Jacquie Lait told the party at its annual conference in Bournemouth last week.

Lait said she was not surprised stakeholder did not receive a mention by the Government at its conference two weeks ago because the public do not know anything about it.

She claimed the 1 per cent charge cap means the target audience will not be able to turn to IFAs for advice and, therefore, will be unable to make a decision about their pension.

It was the first time a Conservative frontbencher has condemned stakeholder outright. Previously, the party has generally supported the stakeholder proposals but differed over some of the detail.

Despite her conviction that the new pension vehicle will not work, Lait said the Conservatives will not scrap stakeholder if they win the next election as they do not have anything to replace it.

The party says it will make pensions simpler and has designed an opt-out system for people under 30 where they can decide not to contribute to the basic state pension but invest their NI contributions through an approved private pension plan instead.

The Conservatives also claim they will abolish the requirement to purchase an annuity at age 75.

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