View more on these topics

Pica launches pensions adviser ‘shop window’ directory

The Pensions Income Choice Association has launched a free-to-use directory of retirement advisers and brokers as part of an effort to encourage savers to shop around.

The new ‘Pick-A’ directory, which opened to registration from intermediaries on Tuesday, is designed to provide a “shop window” for regulated retirement specialists to promote their services to savers across the UK.

People who use the service will be asked to input their age, fund value and postcode. They will then be given an estimate of their potential retirement income and told they could get more if they have medical problems.

At this point the user will be able to choose from three options – a complete financial planning service, help focused purely on their pension or a list of annuity rates. The directory will then generate a list of advisers and brokers who can provide these services and the price they charge.

In order to be listed on the directory intermediaries must be FCA authorised and able to provide annuity rates from at least 75 per cent of the market.

Hargreaves Lansdown head of pensions research and Pica chairman Tom McPhail says: “Without someone to help them shop around for the right type of retirement income and to search the market for the best rate it is virtually impossible for pension investors to get a good deal from their retirement savings.

“This directory will help them to find the right help at the right price.”

Informed Choice managing director Martin Bamford says: “This is a great initiative by Pica and we will be signing up to the directory. It is essential that people are able to access help when they reach retirement.”

Advisers can register to be listed on the directory for free here

Tom McPhail: Why Pica’s new directory matters

Recommended

Boardroom-Business-Finance-Corporate-Meeting-Hire-700x450.jpg

Phoenix and Admin Re merger collapses

Phoenix Life’s proposed takeover of closed life insurer Admin Re has collapsed after the two parties failed to agree terms. In July, closed-book life consolidation vehicle Phoenix confirmed it was early stage talks with Admin Re, a subsidiary of Swiss Re, about a possible £3bn merger. However, in a joint statement issued yesterday the companies […]

Cinema-Reel-Movie-Film-Projector-700.jpg

Informed Choice starts work on Financial Planning: The Movie

Informed Choice is creating a feature-length documentary on the financial planning challenges for the baby boomer generation. The film has entered pre-production where the firm will decide on storylines and themes while appealing for expert interview subjects in different areas. Filming is expected to start in the new year and be completed by the autumn, […]

Savings-House-Property-Mortgage-Ladder-700.png
3

House prices set to increase 24% in five years

Knight Frank is predicting that house prices will increase by 24 per cent in the next five years. In its UK housing market forecast for Q4 2013, published today, Knight Frank is predicting house price growth of 7 per cent both this year and again in 2014. It predicts price growth will slow to 4 […]

FSCS-office-alt-500x320.jpg
2

PI experts deny FSCS ‘broken reed’ claims

Professional indemnity insurance experts have denied that high excesses and policy exclusions mean the product is a “broken reed” for adviser firms. Last week, Financial Services Compensation Scheme chief executive Mark Neale said PI insurance is unlikely to prove the answer to the problems created by the high compensation costs which fall on investment advisers, […]

Can you put a hat on?

By Sarah Scott, marketing consultant You might think the question in the title is a strange one. Perhaps even more so when you learn that it’s one of several asked as part of an assessment for Employment Support Allowance eligibility in the opening scenes of the 2016 film, ‘I, Daniel Blake’. Daniel is a carpenter […]

Newsletter

News and expert analysis straight to your inbox

Sign up

Comments

There are 2 comments at the moment, we would love to hear your opinion too.

  1. Firstly, PICA should receive recognition for the work they have done in driving more consumers to buy products from someone other than their current insurer.

    The idea that there should be a national directory of at retirement advisers to help people who struggle to find affordable reliable expert help is also welcome. The ABI promised in its Code of Conduct to sign post customers to a directory if a suitable one could be found.

    It is therefore very disappointing that PICA have designed a directory which isn’t regarded as suitable by OMO Working Group stakeholders who include TPAS, MAS, the Consumer Panel as well as NAPF & ABI. It is a missed opportunity.

    The directory is unsuitable in my opinion because it lacks clear objective standards for brokers/advisers to follow which would safeguard the consumer against the following problems.

    1. Being confused whether they were paying for advice with a recommended solution or simply making a buying decision based on limited data.

    2. Buying an annuity, especially an enhanced annuity, believing that you had looked at the best rates when in fact there were better rates readily available which had not been offered to you

    3. Buying an annuity from the open market and losing valuable benefits from the current policy which would be better such as guaranteed annuity rate; higher tax free cash or losing life cover when ill

    4. Dealing with a salesman when you thought you were dealing with a professional who was on your side

    5. Being honest and up front about how the consumer pays for the service, not trying to call it ‘free’ when commissions of up to 4% are taken

    6. Having different commission levels for different products which given the sales nature of many firms does distort how the products are distributed.

    7. Selling unsuitable products like single life annuities to married men but saying nothing because “I’m not allowed to provide advice”.

    Over 100 firms of specialist at retirement advisers are willing to sign up to a voluntary Code of Conduct for brokers and advisers which would protect the consumer. The Code will be administered by the Society Of Later Life Adviser and will be issued later this year for public consultation. A draft of the Code has been sent to the OMO Working Group for comment ahead of public consultation.

  2. Mr Higham why is it OK for you to take commission (via your non-advised arm of Annuity Direct) but it isn’t OK for others.

    You will no doubt argue that you “cap” your commission, but commission is still commission. If you are so against non-advised why even offer it. I have seen you describe some of the non-advised deals in the market as tawdry. Is it as tawdry as the same deal you struck to offer Fidelity’s DC members access to the open market in March last year? A service which although offering access to advice for larger funds, offers the cattle of the scheme a non-advised commission taking service.

    Stones and glass houses spring to mind whenever I see you commenting on issues in the retirement space.

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