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Web comments: Reaction to last week’s MAS column

Online comments related to last week’s MAS column: Money Advice Service: IFAs continue to misunderstand us

The sad thing is the MAS could shine as a bastion of information and common sense.

Being funded by the industry that it appears to sneer at is one of the aggravations. A second is the distorted logic that expresses itself in alignments with certain mortgage brokers, the RBS and others.

The job of the MAS must be to educate those who wish knowledge but are leery of approaching an adviser.

As soon as the MAS moves into ‘advice’ or partiality then it loses not only the small element of support that it currently sustains but also the respect of the entire community for pursuing the usual financial services quango blueprint of empire building.

Alan Lakey

Have I missed something? Once again, no recognition or reference to the many IFAs who provide their time and expertise free of charge to deliver the MAS presentations. Please address this, Mr Lemos – they do say that a thank you costs nothing.

Ian Parker

My job is to educate the public who use my services, as well as providing them with good advice and suitable products. I am better placed to educate them than MAS.

If people want to be educated, they should contact an IFA.
There is also a plethora of information available on the web and other media that can assist people who want some general knowledge.

If the Government/FSA or whoever else wants to set up some other service (MAS) they should fund it through public funds, not mine or other hard pushed IFAs who are tearing their hair out trying to survive in this industry.

Patrick Schan

A lot of negative responses here, but I do think that the attempt of Mr Lemos to try to open a dialogue should be welcomed. Some people/organisations wouldn’t even do that, especially when you consider the amount of criticism that has been levelled at the MAS.

I am intrigued to see that a “business plan” is to be developed by MAS, though. Since when was MAS a business? An interesting term to use, don’t you think?

James Hurdman

So they now admit they give advice, not information.

The point they are missing is that most IFAs are small businesses and MAS does compete with us to some extent.

We fund MAS out of compulsion, not choice. How many other industries pay to fund competitors? Does Tesco support Sainsbury’s and Asda?

If MAS offers free advice, it should be considered a charity and we would then be asked to contribute and could make our own minds up. It seems the powers that be want to charge us for everything without any concerns for affordability.

The need for affordability applies to our advice. Why doesn’t it apply to FSA, FSCS and others that charge fees and levies?

Kevin Grimwood

Does this man really think he and his MAS are going to make a difference? Can he be that deluded? He is cleverer than me, because I can find no advice on the site at all. He chairs a body dreamed up by the last Government – the same lot that dreamed up all the rubbish from stakeholders onwards – and endorsed in a so-called independent report, just like Wanless, Sandler et al. For the life of me I cannot see why someone in No 10 or 11 does not simply call time on this farce.

Graeme Laws

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