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‘Govt wrong to pose as moral custodian’

The Government has a “moral log” in its eye over long-term savings, claims Conservative MP John Redwood.

He says the Government claims to be the moral custodian for helping people to invest for the long term but, by promoting premium bonds and the National Lottery, it is encouraging the public to be reckless with their money and its policies are responsible for the savings gap.

Speaking at a Round Table meeting with the IFA Defence Union, former investment manager Redwood said there is not enough practical financial services understanding and experience in the Government, which has affected its ability to come up with fresh ideas. He said a combination of regulation and Government interference in the tax system are the main reasons why pension funds are in their current state.

He said the Government should have made more use of its corporate power over the FSA to review its budgets and the thrust of regulation since its inception as ministers are ultimately responsible.

Redwood said: “For this Government to be posing as the custodian of wise choices for people is wrong when it is actively promoting the National Lottery, which is the sur- est way to lose your savings, and is actively promoting premium bonds which have produced a pretty low yield compared with many other products you could offer those savers.”

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