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NU emphasises need for IFAs

Norwich Union has broadly welcomed the FSA&#39s proposals contained in CP121 but sounds a note of caution, saying it is essential that a substantial IFA sector is maintained.

It says product providers should be allowed to make soft loans to IFAs as they adjust to a depolarised marketplace to help them through the transitional period.

The UK&#39s biggest life office welcomes the proposed defined-payment system but says there should be a no transaction fee option if a consumer does not invest, as well as improved disclosure to make it clear to the consumer what they are getting for their money.

The company says the CP121 proposals provide opportunities for innovative and new providers if they design products which consumers value.

This claim differs from other bodies such as the Consumers&#39 Association which is warning that niche product providers would be shut out of the market because they would be unable to compete with bigger providers with deeper pockets to buy up distribution.

It agrees with the FSA&#39s plan to scrap the better than best rule, saying there should be no limit to the amount of business that IFAs can refer to providers which own a stake in them.

It calls the two-tier advice idea the “only proposal in CP 121 which could have a significant impact on the savings gap.”

Director of marketing Robert Fletcher says: “The economies of distribution will not be changed by depolarisation.

“We have not changed our position of taking minority stakes in IFAs.”


VAT&#39s the way I like it

So, after a couple of weeks of “VAT and financial services – the story so far”, it is time to look ahead to “VAT and financial services – the story as it could be, post-whatever the outcome of CP121 may be”.Of course, fees and commission have been two key issues in the consultation process. As […]

Scottish Life takes stance against defined payment

Royal London and its marketing division Scottish Life are taking a stance against the FSA&#39s view that an IFA must use a defined payment system to be classed as independent.The group&#39s response to CP 121, Reforming Polarisation, says it is market choice and a best value and suitable product that characterise independence, not the method […]

New non-exec director at Chelsea Building Society

Chelsea Building Society has announced the appointment of a new non-executive director. Jean Irvine, who is currently a non-executive board adviser within the Ministry of Defence and a member of the British Computer Society, joined the Society following her approval by the FSA last week. Until 2001, Irvine worked in a variety of senior roles […]


“Yes. I don&#39t think consu-mers will know which way to turn. They will be completely confused.”Paul Walters, Foley Financial Services“Yes. In its current form, the FSA would fail its duties.”Oscar Adams,IFA Plus“Yes, it will take out a lot of people who want to receive independent financial advice but do not want to pay fees and […]

To be and not to be – Multi asset investing with conviction

At Pictet Asset Management we believe active management of asset allocation is the most important generator of returns. What is not to be in our portfolio is just as important as what is to be because good performance is determined as much by the assets you avoid as by those you hold. The FP Pictet Multi Asset Portfolio managers are not wedded to any particular […]


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