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Nationwide to slash financial planning team

Nationwide is cutting its financial adviser team from 430 staff to 300 as it plans to roll out an online investment advice service later this year.

The cuts to the team include 16 area managers, reducing the total to 40. Two of six regional directors will also depart as part of the restructure. The changes take effect from May.

A Nationwide spokesman says: “We are refocusing our efforts to match the size of our network to the demand we see in the market. We remain committed to offering trusted advice and our customers will continue to be able to access this through all of our branches across the country.

“They will also benefit from a new online investment proposition, which will be launched later this year.”

The building society says  the online investment service would exist alongside its face-to-face advice service in branches but it gave no further details. Nationwide operates a single-tied investment advice service through Legal & General. 

Roxburgh Financial Management branch manager Garry Webb says: “It is a significant cut to the team and those customers who have a relationship with the building society for advice may now seek independent advice away from Nationwide. That does not strike me as a bad thing.”

Last June, Nationwide launched its regular premium investment advice service after delays in introducing its RDR-ready proposition meant it could advise only on lump sum investments. In January, the society pledged to pay customers £250 if its annuity shopping-around service was unable to offer them a better deal than their existing provider.

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