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Here is the good news

At the recent Aifa dinner, I had the pleasure of sitting beside John Lappin, the editor of Money Marketing.

Strangely enough, we had met at the previous year’s event and at that time I had asked him to have a “good news” page in the paper. He said he would look into it and advise me but nothing happened. Imagine my surprise when this year, he agreedthat this would be worthwhile trying and would I write a few words for him to get the message across – so here goes.

I don’t know about you, and perhaps it is an age thing, but I can’t remember the last time I saw some really good news in any newspaper of any type, whether the popular press, broadsheets or in a trade newspaper. They all seem to be too busy moaning about how terrible our lives are under the current Parliamentary regime, how war is more or less treated just as a normal fact of life throughout the world and how famine, poverty, homelessness and many other problems of civilisation generally just keep pressing down on us all.

Wouldn’t it be nice if newspapers had a page for printing good news stories only.

Our own industry badly needs good news which will hopefully restore confidence by the general public in our advice. Who knows we might all get to like it ourselves.

I would therefore like to ask everyone who reads this paper to let John Lappin know of the good news that you have come across in your business, or even personal life, or which might give us a smile to brighten up the day. If we get enough good responses to make this a worthwhile project, John may even extend it to two pages.

The more we can enjoy our reading the more we can debunk pessimism. IFAs have many great opportunities going forward and it is up to them to grasp them and stop moaning. I do hope you will take this opportunity to write in to John. There is probably a better chance of getting your letter printed on this page than it is in the reader’s “moan” column.

Just to start the ball rolling, here is the good news given to me by John, one of my consultants today:A new client gave John personal details of life insurance contracts and investments which included an old whole-of-life policy. On checking it out, he was amazed to find that the policy had a surrender value of £18,358. No good news apparent so far but the premium for this contract was £5.25 a month and the policy started in June 1971. The total payments over the years amounted to £2,105.25.

Believe it or not, this was with a closed fund offering no bonuses at present – Royal & Sun Alliance. On top of that, the life cover death benefit is £39,950. Needless to say, the client will probably continue with the policy but is very happy at the value for money in this contract so far.

Les Shields, Shields Investment and Financial Consultants, Glasgow


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