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Treasury took no account of Sipp investors’ plight

The Treasury forced through the property Sipp U-turn without even considering the consequences for the financial services industry, says a Tory Shadow Treasury minister.

Fareham MP Mark Hoban says Treasury Economic Secretary Ivan Lewis’s admission that the Treasury made no estimates on the number of Sipp investors making off-plan purchases of residential property shows the Government’s lack of thought about the implications of the last-minute change.

Lewis was responding to two written questions which were tabled by Hoban asking for an estimate of these figures and if there had been any representations from the financial services or property sectors about proposed transitional relief for Sipps.

Lewis said that no estimate had been made and there have been no industry represen- tations about the availability of such relief.

Hoban says: “It seems strange that the Treasury was happy to make this decision without being fully aware of the implications it would have on the industry. This is ano- ther example of the instab- ility over pension taxation created under Gordon Brown and it is hard to see how the industry can have confidence in future pension policy when its interests were left out of policy calculations.”

A Treasury spokesman says: “HMRC does not hold records for those who have taken action prior to the commencement of pension simplification. It become apparent recently that despite the checks and balances built into the system, the Government should act now to prevent the potential abuse of the new rules.”

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