View more on these topics

Minister&#39s view on changes

Your Poles Apart campaign is a valuable contribution to the debate which we have encouraged consistently since the possibility of change to the existing polarisation regime was first raised.

Your Ten Questions cover a wide range of issues. First and most important, let me assure your readers that all decisions for possible change will be taken by Ministers, but only after full public consultation.

As you know, since the DGFT report was published last year we have taken great care to ensure that decision is fully and properly informed. The FSA has been very open about its role and the research

which it has commissioned. Michael Folger has already set out in some detail for your readers what

the FSA has done to promote discussion. We welcome that. We have ensured that the Treasury

received copies of representations received on publication of the FSA research. We are open to the

views of interested parties.

We recognise the importance of IFAs in promoting savings and investment, and their success in doing so.

By the late 1990s this was manifest in a growing share of new life and pensions business.

But things change. New products and new delivery channels are developed. Customer expectations change. We need to keep abreast of these and look at existing arrangements to see if these are still the best for all concerned.

We believe that it is now a good time to look at these arrangements again, having been in place since 1987. The introduction of new regulation arrangements and implementation of the Financial Services and Markets Act offer a timely and helpful framework for this.

That does not presume significant change. We are still considering whether change might be required, and we cannot reach a final decision until we have received the views of the FSA. Once we have had an opportunity to consider these, alongside the views of others, we will announce our response. This process will consider the issues raised in your Ten Questions. They will not be overlooked.

The Government wants to see the most competitive and trusted savings and investment market possible.

IFAs have a part to play in delivering that. You can be assured that when we look at how best to proceed in the future, consumer interests will be at the heart of our thinking. But they do not have to be in opposition to competitive or economic interests as you imply.

An effective, innovative, competitive environment will deliver benefits for consumers and business alike. The right solution will accommodate the best balance between all interests. We are determined to find that through wide and open consultation with the industry, with IFAs and with consumer representatives. Only then will Ministers take their decision.

Recommended

LIA claims Saltr fails to address IFA complaints

The LIA claims the ABI has failed to deliver on its prom-ise to include IFAs within its Savings And Long Term Risk initiative.LIA public affairs director John Ellis praises the Saltr initiative, which launches on October 4, for addressingproblems that consumers have with life offices.But Ellis says it ignores the problems that IFAs face.He lists […]

Virgin good, IFAs bad?

Fascinating issues relating to online personal finance were examined by a wide range of speakers at the recent Forrester UK Retail Finance Forum.For me, none was more fascinating than the presentation by Paul Pester, managing director of Virginmoney.com. However, I suspect the subject of my interest was not one he had intended.Specifically, when it comes […]

Consolidated life

Life office mergers are increasing the workload for IFAs as they are left to mop up the mess of name changes and old policies.Takeovers and demutualisations have led to a drop in communication standards and an increase in client confusion, according to many IFAs. But the general feeling is that a narrowing marketplace could benefit […]

PFW fits the bill

For once, changes to the Finance Bill may actually achieve what they are meant to. The bill introduces a number of changes to pension fund withdrawal rules from October 1.These changes are designed to ease administration and offer greater flexibilityto scheme members altho-ugh the system implications may prevent many product providers from taking immediate advantage.The […]

Retirement - thumbnail

Pension freedoms: stop the scams

At the beginning of 2015, we highlighted that the new pension freedoms that come fully online on 6 April also represent a very attractive opportunity for the criminal fraternity to scam savers out of some, or all, of their accumulated retirement savings.

Newsletter

News and expert analysis straight to your inbox

Sign up

Comments

    Leave a comment

    Close

    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

    Email: customerservices@moneymarketing.com