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Major parties accused of using ‘made up’ tax avoidance figures

Labour, Conservative and Liberal Democrat politicians are using “made up assumptions” of increased revenue generated by targeting tax evasion and avoidance, according to the Institute for Fiscal Studies. Tackling tax evasion and avoidance has proved a huge part of this year’s election campaign since HSBC was found to be aiding clients of its Swiss private […]

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UK GDP up to 0.4% in April

UK GDP grew by 0.4 per cent in the three months to April compared to 0.3 per cent growth in the three months ending in March 2015, according to the National Institute of Economic and Social Research. The think-tank says it expects “the slight softening” of GDP growth experienced in the first quarter of this […]

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Malcolm McLean: Is there a future for the state pension?

Pensions have not featured massively in this year’s election debates, although on other occasions, for older people at least, this has usually been an issue that has materially influenced voting intentions. This is especially so when it comes to the level and sustainability of the state pension. This year’s election has seen politicians of all […]

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Apfa writes to Govt over ‘unjustifiable’ hike in adviser fees

Apfa has written to the major political parties to urge a rethink of what it terms an “unjustifiable” 10 per cent increase in advisers’ FCA fees. In a paper on proposed fees published in March, the FCA said A13 advisers will pay £74.9m in 2015/16, up by 10 per cent from £68m in 2014/15. The […]

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England vs Australia: pensions

Well, the cricket season is here, and England and Australia are stepping up to the wicket. Although we compete with each other in the sporting world, when it comes to pensions, Australia’s pension programme is held up as a model for our auto-enrolment initiative. Auto-enrolment was introduced because people weren’t saving enough into their pensions, and it is still early days but signs are positive. However, in Australia, saving into a pension is compulsory, and in fact employers are the ones who have to pay in. Employees in Australia can make additional contributions into their pensions, but they don’t have to. Should the onus be on the employer or employee to save? Well in the UK we think it’s both, but to get ‘adequate’ savings for retirement it’s the employee who has to pay more in.

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