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Equitable takeover deal may be in sight

IFAs predict a speedy res olution of the Equitable Life debacle after it was revealed that up to hundreds of FSA staff are burdened with pension top-up sch emes with the life office.

The news comes as Aegon, GE Capital and AMP are understood to be lining up bids for the life office.

While GE is thought to want just parts of Equit able, a senior source rev ealed that Aegon would like the whole business if it could secure a deal to cap its liabilities.

Three of the seven previous financial regulators which form the FSA – SIB, the SFA and the PIA – all offered Equitable additional voluntary contribution plans.

The new FSA scheme will not be run by Equitable although the FSA is keen to point out that the decision to drop it was made on the back of external advice and not related to information gathered in its supervisory role.

Advisory & Brokerage managing director Gareth Marr says: “The regulator&#39s own AVC is with Equitable, meaning self-interest will ensure a deal is done.”

Marshall Williams and Co managing director Ian Williams says: “Vested int erest will drive any deal, particularly now that the National Asso ciation of Pension Funds&#39 trustees are duty-bound to look after their members&#39 interests.”

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