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Professional trio close in on merger goal

A merger between the three IFA professional bodies appears to be closer, with key figures saying they would welcome the move.

Sofa, the LIA and the Institute of Financial Plan-ning are talking of the prospect of closer co-operation, saying industry iss-ues such as depolarisation and the Sandler review make it essential for them to speak with one voice.

The LIA and the IFP say that the three bodies have been in talks for some time, with the only obstacles remaining being practical details such as what the new organisation would be called and who would be in charge.

IFP chief executive Nick Cann says: “We are talking with the others. A merger would have to be the goal but you would still have to retain what is important to the membership of the individual bodies.”

Sofa chairman John Porteous says: “For a long time, a number of people have felt that a single body is the best way forward. I am prepared to entertain all options.

“We are ruling nothing out but we are also ruling nothing in.”

LIA director of public affairs John Ellis says: “We have been having talks. I think it would make sense for the professional bodies to be represented by one voice. I am not sure that there are any major barr-iers but there is still a lot of detail to be sorted.”

•Professional blend, p17


Pru rebrands ScotAm European

The Scottish Amicable European brand is being scrapped by Prudential.After scrapping the onshore brand, Pru is rebranding SAE as Prudential International and launching a new offshore with-profits bond.SAE was set up in its Dublin base in 1994 to market back into the UK. The phasing out of the onshore ScotAm name began last year although […]

X marks the spot

The UK&#39s biggest mortgage lender, the Halifax, can certainly not be accused of avoiding controversy or keeping a low profile over the past few months.Along with HSBC and Nationwide, Halifax hit the headlines with the Financial Services Ombudsman&#39s ruling that its dual-pricing policies introduced last year were unfair.Insult was added to injury for Halifax when […]

Family tickles the fancy of investors

Family Assurance is using children&#39s cartoon favourites the Mr Men to promote its tax-free junior bond.The move follows the society reaching an agreement with entertainment licensing agency, the Copyright Promotions Licensing Group, to use the characters in its promotions.From April, Mr Tickle and friends will appear on one million creative inserts and 125,000 direct-mail packs […]

ScotMut boosts first-year bonus on big with-profits investments

Scottish Mutual is improving the terms on its with-profits investment bond for investments of £20,000 or more by increasing initial bonuses by 1 per cent until the end of May.On investments between £20,000 and £49,999, the additional guaranteed bonus is increased to 3.25 per cent from 2.25 per cent. For investments of £50,000 and upwards, […]


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