Monday, May 31, 2010

Business big shot: Ron Sandler - Times Online

Business big shot: Ron Sandler - Times Online

Ron "the suite" Sandler is a "big shot"?

Clive "milk the policyholders" Cowdery is an "insurance tycoon"?

Have these two men been instrumental in the ruination of the UK savings culture and the decimation of any savings the prudent may have built up prior to their being "credited" with anything?

Thursday, May 20, 2010

No age of austerity at the FSA | Opinion | Money Marketing#comments#comments#comments#comments

No age of austerity at the FSA | Opinion | Money Marketing#comments#comments#comments#comments


Mike Fenwick | 20 May 2010 10:49 am

Start with this question: For what, or for whom is this "intensive supervision" intended?

There are to be costs, but for whom are any benefits intended?

Is the "intensive supervision" aimed at a small one man IFA offering advice on say a mortgage protection policy?

Or is it more likely to be aimed at larger multi-faceted players operating in complex global markets?

We hear constantly from politicians, economists and regulators of the need to address what are called the "too big to fail" entities. Are they the problem?

We hear very little, if anything, from those same politicians, economists and regulators on the impact which increasing regulatory demands make on the small IFA, demands which increasingly render them "too small to succeed". However, given the problem, could IFAs be part of the solution?

Perhaps we need a more important question: To what extent does the average person in the UK require the services of the larger multi-faceted players operating in complex global markets?

Perhaps the answer is sometimes, at some stage. but is it always, every day, week in week out? Do the basic day to day needs of an average person, needs such as a bank account, a mortgage, some life assurance, a pension require that they must be served by those with global ambitions on an every day basis?

Very shortly in the budget currently being prepared by George Osborne, and in the spending review due later this year, the average person in the UK will become only too well aware of the costs of those with such global ambitions. Costs by way of job losses, by way of reduced public services, by way of either inflation or higher interest rates, or both - it will not be pretty.

But will they also be as aware of the clear failures in our regulatory systems, the systems that were intended to safeguard us all from the future we now face? Will they be as aware that our regulatory systems only apparent answer is to increase their costs - but with no greater guarantee, indeed with no guarantee whatsoever of greater success?

Perhaps, just perhaps, rather than increase the costs (exponentially) to - belatedly - address the real size of the problem, an alternative might be to reduce the size of the problem, to find the ways in which the needs and requirements of the average person in the UK can be offered without having those met by entities which are "too big to fail", with costs when they collapse which are too heavy to bear, and with the then nearly assured request from our regulators for even more money.

Should IFAs give some thought to finding such alternatives, alternatives which better address the needs and requirements of the average person?

Or should we just leave it to the politicians, economists, and regulators?

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

James Moore: FSA must not resort to macho regulation - Business Comment, Business - The Independent

James Moore: FSA must not resort to macho regulation - Business Comment, Business - The Independent: "The FSA needs to be careful not to resort to the sort of macho regulation that was on display during that very public appeal hearing.
One way of achieving this, of course, is hiring better people to work for Mr Pain. It might be unpalatable to suggest this in these times of pay restraint, but that means offering better salaries to those people."


Is Mr Pain the right man for the job?

Does he have enough people beneath him who are ineffective without taking on more?

TONY HAZELL¿S THE LAST WORD: We must end 13 years of pension pilfering | Mail Online

TONY HAZELL'S THE LAST WORD: We must end 13 years of pension pilfering | Mail Online

Private pensions became the cashcow of the company owners, the trustees and with money purchase the life offices. For decades there had been lots of interest in private pension provision which was generated by the people who were rewarded for their efforts, salespeople. Thanks to HM Treasury policy handed down to the FSA there will be no reward for persuading others to put money aside for retirement, the end result will be far fewer people with their own pension pot. Did Gordon Brown want everyone to be reliant upon the public sector? That way lies votes? As far as the FSA is concerned it is a political puppet, it will dance to any tune its masters play.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/money/article-1279559/TONY-HAZELL-S-THE-LAST-WORD-We-end-13-years-pension-pilfering.html?ito=feeds-newsxml#ixzz0oLzmUHC1

Thursday, May 13, 2010

MM Leader: Fundamental reform of FSCS must be a priority | Opinion | Money Marketing

MM Leader: Fundamental reform of FSCS must be a priority | Opinion | Money Marketing

Yes, this is an urgent matter. We cannot wait for a protracted 'consultation' we need the 'issues of fairness' to be addressed immediately.

The situation is untenable.

Solicitors’ insurance: is it time to stop insuring rogue lawyers? - Times Online

Solicitors’ insurance: is it time to stop insuring rogue lawyers? - Times Online: "The problem becomes sharper because solicitors, unlike most professionals, hold client money — although as Maher notes, an independent financial adviser (who need not carry insurance) can effectively lose all your life savings and the maximum you can recover is £48,000 from the Financial Services Compensation Scheme."


Mr Maher is incorrect, independent financial advisers are compelled to have insurance in order to remain authorised by the FSA. The problem of IFAs not being insured arises when the firm is no longer authorised because, if and when it is available, run off cover lasts for a period of six years whereas the IFA's liability lasts forever, a situation which is unique to that profession and one which lawyers would no doubt find unacceptable and that may be why they have their own regulator, Ombudsman and compensation arrangements.