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Why the powers that be have lost the plot

Sandler – who is this man? – wants the IFA to be the main distribution channel for a new stakeholder suite (Money Marketing, October 17). Has he ever been involved with pensions or the sales of? Surely not. For an industry that is slowly but surely being killed off by politicians and regulation, don&#39t we just need a Sandler.

How do these brains actually reach their exalted positions? You do not have to be over-intelligent to realise that pensions do have to be sold. Most members of the public do not positively go out with a view to buying a pension on Saturday morning – or at most other times, it would seem at present. So they have to be sold. To get a salesforce to sell, you do not reduce their ability to earn.

One day, perhaps, the powers that be will realise that if they wish to re-establish the concept of pensions once again and to create more sales, they will have to ensure that those in the industry can earn reasonably from their activity – a pension salesperson is now earning through stakeholder probably one-fifth of what they were earning 20 years ago.

If the Government wants a healthy market in pensions, then let the providers charge for their activity. I personally wish to distance myself as far as I possibly can from stake-holder and will only provide advice on this topic reluctantly and grudgingly to my existing clients.

Unfortunately, it would appear that those running our industry really have lost the plot. However, for me, at 59 years of age next month, I can honestly say that I have seen the best years in our business – with lots of luck, five reasonable years and then the job centre, I predict.

Michael Hollingdale

Harvey Curtis Associates,

Brighton, East Sussex

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