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Mini Isas set for a record

Over six million consumers could take a mini Isa before the end of the tax year, according to a survey.

Based on 1,000 interviews carried out for Intelligent Finance, research agency ICM believes a last-minute rush could make this a record year in terms of the number of Isas opened.

IF chief executive Grenville Turner says if all those who say they are planning to take out an Isa do so before April 5, it could raise the total of new Isa accounts opened to over 14 million in 2003/04, up from 12 million in the previous tax year.

Turner says mini cash Isas are still the main savings vehicle of choice, with an estimated 6.3 million people taking one out this year.

A survey of 1,500 Ample customers by Taylor Nelson Sofres has found that tax relief is the main appeal of Isas.

Ample chief Chris Blatchford believes that this is a vital message for the Government as it looks to make further cuts to the tax breaks given to mainstream savings products.

Sixty-three per cent of respondents believe that the Government should reverse the imminent loss of tax relief on dividend payments and restore full tax relief to Isas.

Bratchford says: “If the Treasury wants more people to save for the future, especially for their retirement, they must put their money where their mouth is and boost tax relief, not cut it.”

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