Friends Provident has become a "good" company in the eyes of investment IFA Chartwell Associates, as...
Friends Provident has become a "good" company in the eyes of investment IFA Chartwell Associates, as it has agreed to hand over performance figures for its with-profit fund to be included in their Group's specialist guide.
Chartwell has been waging a campaign against all with-profits providers to persuade them to improve transparency and disclose the performance of their with-profits fund, in the hope it gives investors a better idea of the provider's financial health and their with-profits status.
Each provider was asked to hand over performance data to be included in a regular with-profits guide, or they would be "named and shamed" by Chartwell for not giving consumers information on their status.
Until recently, Friends Provident had been "indifferent" to handing over such information, says Patrick Connolly, associate director, but FP has now handed over the data after 18 months of persuasion to show its free asset ratio is approximately 9.5%, with-profits solvency ratio is 11.5% and total free assets are £2.252bn.
That said, Prudential still comes top as the best provider of a with-profits fund, and has held that slot now for almost six years, with Standard Life and Norwich Union coming in at joint second place.
Prudential now has a free asset ratio of 11.1% and total free assets of £9.141bn, with a with-profits solvency ratio of 32%.
"Even though the overall annualized returns on the Prudential bond have fallen they do consistently prove that they are able to smooth the ups and downs of the stockmarkets over a sustained period, which is the purpose of a With-Profits Bond. The fact that the bond has returned 182% since its launch in May 1991, compared with a return of 184% on the FTSE 100 index, tells its own story," says the Chartwell guide.
Legal & General is still being labeled as a "bad" company by Chartwell as it refuses to hand over its performance figures, however, the guide does point out that L&G's with-profits performance is available in its literature and is also accessible via L&G's website.
Moreover, Chartwell is billing Legal & General - which sits fifth in the with-profits top ten - as having "the potential to be major with-profits players" because of their financial strength.
Scottish Widows is also being targeted as an "indifferent" company because the firms provides information to Chartwell but does not allow it to be published in the guide.
To get either an email or hard copy of the latest Chartwell with-profits guide, click thru the right-hand link.
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