Gartmore chairman Paul Myners came out fighting for IFAs and against depolarisation this week following an adviser's protest over his comments about the with-profits market in the Myners report.
The adviser's comments, which accused Myners of insinuating that IFAs select with-profits products on the back of commission bias, were put to Myners in a letter to the panel at the Skandia Pathfinder conference in London on Monday.
It read: “Paul Myners has insulted and damned IFAs on the front page of Money Marketing. He was quoted as saying IFAs are swayed by the largest commission. Will he apologise?” Myners argued that he was not accusing IFAs of being corrupt but was pointing out that the opaque nature of with-profits products means they cannot be selected on investment factors alone.
In an interview with Money Marketing following the conference, Myners said: “I am disappointed that an IFA should not choose to challenge me face to face on this. Gartmore sells its products through IFAs, strongly supports and endorses the IFA and sees the independent and objective IFA as increasingly important.
“IFAs at times underestimate their importance. They often have signific-ant influence in their own communities and they should be more willing to stand up and express their views. They are certainly fighting against some quite powerful groups who have a vested interest in depolarisation.”
Conference report, p3
The spotlight is on with-profits this week as the Money Marketing Focus surveys expand to become the first reference guide to all life, pension, investment and mortgage products.
Each quarter, MM Focus will include comprehensive coverage of all product areas as well as the traditional in-depth survey. This month's survey is the highly respected and widely quoted with-profits and unit-linked survey – the only survey to bring together comprehensive charging and past performance information on all life, pension and investment with-profits and unit-linked products.