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Will you be swayed by party promises?

Do you as an IFA feel spoilt for choice when you survey the parties and policies that have been presented to you in the last few weeks?

Perhaps not. But there are some clear financial services initiatives which might sway you. The Conservatives promise to rein in the FSA and the Ombudsman with a shift to buyer beware and a bond to be paid for making complaints.

The Liberal Democrats are more circumspect but promise to cut back red tape. Labour more or less backs the current system.

On pensions, the opposition parties scrap it out over which party is most likely to move away from means-testing while the Government mostly relies on the Turner commission although it says aspects of means-testing are not for the long term.

Labour has ruled out compulsion, as have the other parties, so no one will be able to vote for that next week.

There are other savings initiatives – the Tories have the lifetime savings account, the LibDems will abolish child trust funds and Labour praises the stakeholder suite.

On housing, Labour presents the rise in the stamp duty threshold for approval while the LibDems will raise it higher and the Tories higher still.

There is, of course, the management of the economy and what this may mean for both the housing market and the stock-market to be factored in.

In a nutshell, these are the choices on the IFA patch. We know which way many advisers will go but would never presume to advise a reader which way to vote when issues such as schools, health and crime and war are also at stake. But we hope that you use your vote wisely.

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