View more on these topics

Labour takes aim at Money Advice Service

Shadow Treasury financial secretary Chris Leslie has attacked the executive remuneration at the Money Advice Service and raised questions about its health check and strategy.

During a public bill committee meeting yesterday afternoon, Leslie said he was “surprised” by the high pay and bonuses at MAS. Answers to written questions Leslie put to Treasury financial secretary Mark Hoban have revealed over £100,000 had been paid in bonuses to senior staff at MAS in 2010/11.

Leslie said: “I think it is more than ironic we have a Money Advice Service with very significantly remunerated senior executives.”

Earlier this month, the business innovation and skills select committee called for an inquiry into MAS chief executive Tony Hobman’s (pictured) £350,000 remuneration package.

Last week, Money Marketing revealed one in three people who had taken the MAS health check did not remember doing so and that MAS research suggests the health check is not significantly changing behaviour. Leslie asked the committee which is currently scrutinising the financial services bill: “It has a health check service, which is good in principle, but to what extent is it being scrutinised?”

He said “questions hang over the strategy” of MAS which is reducing the amount of face-to-face work it does in favour of online services. Leslie wants the service to focus on low earners but amendment put forward by Labour on the issue have been voted down by the Government. Leslie added: “It has seen a large expenditure shift to advertising and marketing opposed to expert in-house money advice.”

Hoban said: “The Money Advice Service needs to think about how it uses it budget best. It needs to reach as many people as possible. My concern is if it focuses on face-to-face advice it would not get the reach it needs.”

He added that the expenditure on advertising was necessary. “The worst thing in the world is to have a beautifully produced website with no visitors,” he said.


Pimco warns of “second Greece” in Portugal

Investment manager Pimco has warned that Europe could face a “second Greece” in Portugal as it continues to struggle with the debt crisis. Pimco chief executive Mohamed El-Erian believes Portugal may need a second rescue package if the original £56bn package fails. Speaking to Der Spiegel, he said: “Unfortunately, that is how it will be. […]

Multi-manager View

In the countdown to the RDR, the industry shift towards solutions focused on risk seems to be gathering pace. With more entrants coming into this subset of the market, which Factset says stood at over £6bn assets under management at December 31, the choice for advisers is getting broader and the differences between solutions are […]


Five years leading the FSA through crisis is enough for anyone

There really has been a lot of rubbish written about Hector Sants’ decision to step down as FSA chief executive. And some of the worst rubbish has been reported in the supposedly best informed places with pure ‘tittle tattle’ that he has been forced out by Westminster or Whitehall. I just do not buy this […]

Harris Associates' view on the UK’s vote to leave the EU

By David Herro, Partner, Deputy Chairman, Portfolio Manager and Chief Investment Officer of International Equity at Harris Associates Britain’s vote to exit the European Union has led to significant uncertainty across global markets. We believe market impact of this uncertainty, though severe, is more of a shorter-term phenomenon which will provide an opportunity for long-term […]


News and expert analysis straight to your inbox

Sign up


There are 3 comments at the moment, we would love to hear your opinion too.

  1. The reaction to Saint Hector’s resignation is stunning in its consistent ferocity.
    One doesn’t expect a policing force to be loved, but one could expect respect. Here there is hatred, pure and simple, and a total lack of respect. If there is any dispute on that look as the comments on all the web sites.
    It is interesting that Mr Wheatley is already being put in a similar bracket by the press.
    How does one develop, and I do emphasise develop, a professional and relevant industry if the the regulator and the practitioners are at each other throats, ad nauseam. There is no respect on either side. More than that there is obvious hatred.
    There are aspects of RDR that the IFA community want to buy into. There appears to be nothing of the current advisor market that the FSA want to buy into. The FSA, and its successor the FCA, in practice hold all the power. There is no meaningful dialogue. And there is nobody in Government with either the nouse or the power to order dialogue.
    This could have been a fresh beginning. I cannot see that it is. The ultimate losers will not be advisers, providers or regulators, but consumers, in whose name the whole fiasco has been played.
    I suspect that Gordon Brown, the parent of the FSA and a parent of the financial crisis will not enjoy a good entry in the history books. In his image the concept of constructive dialogue is probably beyond reach. Andrew Tyrie could really leave his mark on history if he could be persuaded or bully all sides into a proper dialogue – and I do mean dialogue.

  2. Let us not forget that Sants was head of a FAILED Police Force, and the fact that he is being so highly rewarded for such failure, is perhaps the real reason behind the anger and disgust which is being so vehemently expressed today, on so many websites.

  3. Early in my career in sales one simple phrase ‘keep it simple stupid’ or KISS was the benchmark for all advice and when faced with a client meeting it still gets the right level of understanding and results. MAS is anything but! Having just half completed the MAS health check (and gave up!!) I know this service will never significantly alter the ‘man in the streets perception’ of there weekening financial affairs. The I.F.A’s that remain post RDR will predominately manage the affairs of those wealthy or wise enough to know that there’s no such thing as a free lunch. Sadly bereaucrats will do what they’ve always done and screw the system.

Leave a comment


Why register with Money Marketing ?

Providing trusted insight for professional advisers.  Since 1985 Money Marketing has helped promote and analyse the financial adviser community in the UK and continues to be the trusted industry brand for independent insight and advice.

News & analysis delivered directly to your inbox
Register today to receive our range of news alerts including daily and weekly briefings

Money Marketing Events
Be the first to hear about our industry leading conferences, awards, roundtables and more.

Research and insight
Take part in and see the results of Money Marketing's flagship investigations into industry trends.

Have your say
Only registered users can post comments. As the voice of the adviser community, our content generates robust debate. Sign up today and make your voice heard.

Register now

Having problems?

Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3712

Lines are open Monday to Friday 9:00am -5.00pm