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Winterthur revamps Sipp ahead of A Day

Winterthur Life has established the flexible self-invested personal pension in anticipation of the changes to the pension rules on A-Day in April 2006.

The Winterthur Life Sipp will be sold only through IFAs and has the ability to accept a wider range of investments after A-Day, including residential property..
The main feature of this Sipp is remote control, which refers to on-line and telephone access to valuations and the Cofunds fund supermarket, as well as access to client transaction data.

The product has no minimum investment, so investors can make regular payments or single contributions and can stop, start, top up or increase contributions at any time without penalty, subject to the Inland Revenue rules. Winterthur will impose no penalties if investors vary their contributions, retire early or transfer to another Sipp provider, although investors who transfer to Winterthur from another provider may have too pay a fee to their existing provider.

The Winterthur Sipp has no initial charge but there is an annual management charge of 545. Additional charges will apply for other services such as income drawdown and commercial property purchase.

In terms of investment choice, all Inland Revenue permitted investments are available. This includes Winterthur Lifes tailored selection investment range of more than 75 funds from a range of fund management groups, but there is no obligation to invest in this range. Investors can also choose Winterthurs elite fund of funds range, which are constructed from the tailored selection funds.

There is also a discretionary management option, whereby an investor can choose to have part or all of their portfolio managed on a discretionary basis by six managers on Winterthurs panel, with fees under 1 per cent. The discretionary managers available are Brewin Dolphin Securities, Cazenove Capital Management, Morgan Stanley Quilter, Newton Investment management, Tilney and UBS.

The Winterthur Sipp may be ideally placed to take advantage of greater interest in Sipps once it is possible to hold residential property. However, it may face competition, particularly in terms of charges, from other providers such as Scottish Equitable and Standard Life.

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