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Give life offices more room to venture forth

The ABI has a shopping list it wants Chancellor Gordon Brown to deal with when he stands up to deliver his Budget.

We hope to see the Chancellor announce a wide-ranging review of post-retirement income which would cover everything from annuities and drawdown to all other forms of pensioners&#39 savings.

Everyone seems to agree there is a problem area and it is time the Government steps back and takes a look at it.

Like several other industry groups, the ABI wants the 0.5 per cent stamp duty on shares abolished and stamp duty on commercial property relaxed.

Brown must also tackle the regulations governing to what degree life offices can invest in venture capital. Much of this area may be dealt with, however, when Gartmore chief executive Paul Myners makes his report to the Treasury on institutional investment trends shortly before the Budget.

Simplification is needed in the rules regarding limited partnerships through which most venture capital operates. We think admin costs are too excessive on these schemes and at the least would hope the Chancellor will not increase them.


Sub-prime time

Of the total working population, imagine 8.7 million (roughly one in four) of them feeling disenfranchised from home ownership and with nobody to talk to about their needs. According to Datamonitor, 25 per cent of the working population fall into what is variously described as sub-prime or non-conforming. Definitions abound as to who or what […]

CML chief hits out at Treasury proposals

Council of Mortgage Lenders chairman Roger Burden has rubbished Treasury proposals for mortgage regulation, claiming they are “fatally flawed” for failing to include advice. Speaking at the CML&#39s annual lunch last week, Cheltenham & Gloucester managing director Burden said neither the mortgage industry nor consumers believe the regulatory structure outlined by the Treasury is the […]

Fund managers see Europe as safe haven

Fund managers say European funds are set to perform strongly this year according to a survey from the investment fund service Keydata. Fund managers from HSBC, Invesco, Investec, Old Mutual and Threadneedle say with the slowdown in the US economy many investors are now turning their attention to Europe as a safe haven. They say […]

Association of Consulting Actuaries surveys small firm pensions

The Association of Consulting Actuaries is surveying pensions trends in smaller firms with 250 employees or less. The ACA says trends in this sector are of major importance as it covers 12m people which is half the working population of the UK. The ACA is hoping the survey will reveal the early impact of stakeholder […]


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