The FSA has been forced to change the way it calculates the payment menu average commission rates after the Office of Fair Trading found that they are skewed against advisers.The move comes a year and a half after Aifa first dem- anded action over calculation discrepancies and was forced to report the FSA to the OFT after the regulator ignored its concerns. An FSA report, triggered by the OFT, found evidence that product providers included non-advised sales in their information returns, which meant that menu market-average figures for collective investment schemes were too low. As a result, the FSA will revise the wording of its questionnaire and introduce new checks to improve quality assurance of data ahead of the annual reassessment of the menu averages in November. Aifa director general Chris Cummings says the move is a clear victory for independent advice and proves the trade body’s argument that the regulator got its sums wrong. He hopes that the OFT action will further validate Aifa’s argument that the menu needs to be greatly simplified to benefit advisers and counter the looming Mifid threat to the payment menu from banks. Fishburns solicitor Harriet Quiney says the FSA’s miscalculation has damaged consumer confidence in the advice sector at a time when public confidence is sin short supply. Cummings says: “The message from the Office of Fair Trading is loud and clear – the FSA miscalculated the menu market averages and made advisers look more expensive than they are. It is just a shame that it has taken so long for the FSA to get the message.” Consilium managing director Kevin Morgan says: “If it was the other way round with genuine concerns that the menu was making financial advice look cheaper than it really is in the eyes of the consumer, then the FSA would have cracked down straight away so it is disappointing that it has taken the OFT to change the regulator’s way.” FSA spokeswoman Sam Bennett says the episode has not changed the way the regulator operates and points out the recalculations were still much lower than the estimates given by Aifa.
Royal London’s new life and pensions business increased by 15 per cent in the first half of 2006.UK life and pension sales rose to £949m on a PVNB basis compared with £823m in the same period last year.Scottish Life’s new business was up 8 per cent to £695m and Bright Grey’s new business showed an […]
The Association of Home Information Pack Providers has today announced the first stage of its roll out of Hips and the Home Condition Reports.The six locations where it will commence its roll out on 6th November 2006 are in Southampton, Newcastle, Northampton, Bath, Huddersfield and Cambridge.The roll out is designed to demonstrate the benefits of […]
I will conclude my series of articles on topical issues in pension planning by providing a summary and overview relating to the transfer of pension rights from final-salary occupational schemes.
Nigel Thomas, who has been managing the Axa Framlington UK select opportunities fund since it was set up over three years ago, has one of the best long-term records of any UK fund manager, first at Carrington Pembroke, which was taken over by ABN Amro, and now with Axa Framlington.
Earlier this year, the Artemis Global Select Fund became a ‘rated’ fund by Rayner Spencer Mills. Watch and read why they rate it and who it may be suitable for… Click here
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As the outlook for the UK’s economy remains uncertain, how can advisers prepare portfolios for any change in inflation? As higher inflation fails to appear on the horizon and wages grow faster than expected, fund managers are weighing up their portfolio moves for any potential changes in the economy. The UK consumer prices index rose […]
IFA directors Kevin and Cheryl Neal have been banned from being company directors by the Insolvency Service for six and four years, respectively. The married couple ran the now-defunct Hertfordshire-based Kevin Neal Associates Wealth Management. They were disqualified for taking assets from an insolvent company. The firm had been incorporated to take over the business interests […]
Hartley Pensions has bought the “untainted” assets of the Lifetime Sipp Company, which went into administration earlier this year. An update published today on the website of Lifetime’s administrators Kingston Smith & Partners says Hartley Pensions has also agreed to administer the tainted Sipps held by Lifetime Sipp. The administrator described tainted assets as those where […]