17 December 2015

Buxton Richard Old Mutual

Richard Buxton: Mind the valuation gap

We are nearing the end of another year overshadowed by the “will they, won’t they?” debate around US interest rates. Next year will continue to be dominated by interest rate policy, even if the question now becomes “how high, how quickly?”. The concern about the strength of the global economy is not going away any […]

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Tony Wickenden: Retirement planning pointers for the year ahead

Last week I started a look at the content of the Autumn Statement directly or indirectly relevant to financial planners. I focused on some of the pension-related changes but did not have room to cover an importantly reassuring announcement regarding inheritance tax. The Government introduced backdated legislation in the Finance Bill 2016 to ensure that […]

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Govt casts its shadow over the FCA

2015 was the year the Government cast a looming shadow over the FCA, from dictating the regulator’s workload to ousting its senior management. The controlling hand of Government in regulatory affairs was made abundantly clear in July when it was announced that FCA chief executive Martin Wheatley would be stepping down. A statement from Chancellor […]

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Advisers shun P2P and crowdfunding Isa changes

The move to include peer-to-peer lending and crowdfunding in Isas was heralded by the industry, but a new report has questioned the impact it is likely to have, particularly on the adviser-led market. In the Autumn Statement, Chancellor George Osborne announced the list of qualifying investments for the new Innovative Finance Isa will be extended […]

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Pensions industry on the back foot as radical reform continues

Radical pension rules, new risks and a new minister – 2015 was another year of monumental change for the pensions industry. While 2014 saw Chancellor George Osborne announced the most important reforms for a century, the impact has only begun to be understood over the last 12 months. As consumers have abandoned annuities, providers – […]

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Long-stop would have barred just nine complaints last year

A long-stop on advice complaints would have affected just nine cases handled by the Financial Ombudsman Service last year, Money Marketing can reveal. The Government is consulting over a potential limit to advisers’ liabilities where advice was given more than fifteen years ago. However, a Freedom of Information request by Money Marketing reveals there were […]

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SLI move signals beginning of the end as trail runs dry

Advisers still reliant on trail commission should prepare for the tap to be finally turned off by fund groups, say investment experts. It is thought the “writing is on the wall” for around £30bn of off-platform trail paying assets and advisers are being warned to adapt their business models accordingly. Last week Money Marketing revealed […]

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Robert Reid: Large firms should not receive special FCA treatment

The news that consolidators are under the microscope is long overdue. The number of times I have been told of an acquisition triggering a mass transfer of assets where ongoing charges increase with no corresponding increase in services is far too common to be apocryphal. Just how this works as suitable advice I have no […]

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Low paid Govt staff could miss out on pension tax relief

Auto-enrolment schemes at both the Department for Work and Pensions and The Pensions Regulator apply the net pay model for tax relief that the Government has warned employers against using. People earning over £10,000 but under the starting rate of income tax – which currently sits at £10,600 – miss out on a 20 per […]