Sipp sales were up by 44 per cent over the past year from 95,791 in 2008/09 to 138,151 in 2009/10.
The FSA data on product sales between April 1 2009 and March 31 2010 also reveals total pension sales including occupational and personal pensions fell by 12 per cent from 1.1 million to 985,747. Group personal pensions saw the sharpest fall, down by 26 per cent from 386,138 to 285,402.
The number of investment bond sales fell by 38 per cent from 361,685 in 2008/09 to 225,999 in 2009/10.
Sales of with-profits bonds increased marginally from 51,373 to 52,569. Sales of unit-linked bonds were down by 30 per cent from 180,767 to 126,008. Sales of all other types of bonds fell by 63 per cent from 129,545 to 47,422.
Isa sales were up by 29 per cent from 505,281 to 652,557, sales of unit trusts and Oeics were up by 12 per cent from 281,944 to 315,707, sales of investment trusts were up by 50 per cent from 7,071 to 10,613 and sales of structured capital at risk products were up by 25 per cent from 47,193 to 58,845.
Hargreaves Lansdown pensions analyst Laith Khalaf says: “Sipp business has been growing over recent years, fuelled by platforms and low-cost Sipp solutions which have opened the products up to the mass market. The decline in overall pension sales is not in tune with the trend in the savings ratio, which could suggest that in times of uncertainty people are less willing to lock their money away in a pension. That is why it is a good thing the coalition Government is looking at options for early access to pension savings.”