Failure to provide ‘light touch' regulation is strangling stakeholder according to the ABI, which has lashed the FSA over its handling of the regime, reports The Times .
Rules introduced by the regulator on how to sell the supposedly simple, low-cost products mean that providers are finding it impossible even to sell them when deemed suitable, the ABI says.
If the rules are not changes, providers will demand more flexibility on the 1.5% price cap. The demand came as latest sales figures from the industry showed consumers bought just £67m worth of Stakeholder pensions in the quarter to June, against £77m in the same period last year, although sales of employer-sponsored regular premium pensions increased to £126m from £101m.
Stakeholder Isas and CTF funds took just £92m in the period, The Times writes.
NEW FINANCIAL REPORTING standards are under pressure already by complaints from some of the largest UK firms, reports the FT
One advocates of international accounting standards, these companies now complain they are making accounts more opaque and less useful.
The FT quotes Jon Symonds, chairman of the Hundred Group of finance directors, stating companies are being forced to present numbers to investors “that almost defied explanation.”
ASIAN BIRD FLU could trigger a 1930s-style collapse in the global economy, according to a report by economists employed by Canadian bank BMO Nesbitt Burns, reports The Daily Telegraph reports.
Factors triggering such a meltdown would include collapsing demand for commodities in China and India, and a collapse in demand for housing and cars in OECD countries, which would send prices of base metals and steel plunging, the bank’s report says.
Companies would be hit by panicking staff, with rates of absenteeism and death sharply higher.
Bird flu has only killed 50 people in Asia since 2003, but researchers are concerned with the associated death rate. If the flu mutates into something more easily spread between humans it could trigger a pandemic.
BMO’s report adds the world would probably be in a better position to stave off economic crisis because of the internet, which would allow people to continue shopping from the safety of their own homes. However, the reports’ authors warn investors not to buy shares in IT companies because they rely on the Far East for most of their components.
The Times adds another, perhaps more pressing risk, is Iran’s decision to seek nuclear power. This could send oil prices to the $100 level because of uncertainty over supply of oil from the country.
FINANCIAL SERVICES software firm Misys faces a shareholder revolt over retention bonuses of up to £1.2m for two executives, says the Guardian.
The Association of British Insurers has issued a "red top" alert to warn its members of its concerns about the bonuses, which it says are designed to keep the executives in place for four years while a search for a new chief executive is conducted.
Investors are planning to stop the special pay plan being implemented, as it is subject to a vote which is binding if agreed.
Investors are concerned that the bonuses planned for divisional directors Tom Skelton and Ivan Martin are unnecessary and not subject to sufficiently tough performance criteria. They are intended to retain the pair until a chief executive is found to replace Kevin Lomax.
The argument with major City investors could be more damaging than is usual for companies enduring rows over directors' remuneration.
AND THE HEAD OF Man Group’s most successful hedge fund business will quit at the end of the month, continues the Telegraph.
Chris Chambers – who is one of the UK’s best paid executives last year earninga £310,000 basic salary plus a £1.8m bonus and £60,000 in benefits – will get a payoff equivalent to 12 months' pay when he steps down as chief executive of Man Investments to seek "fresh opportunities".
Chambers will be replaced by John Morrison, currently head of marketing and client services for Man Investments, albeit Morrison will not take a seat on the board.
If you have any comments you would like to add to this story or would like to speak to its author about a similar subject, telephone Jonathan Boyd on 020 7484 9769 or email [email protected].IFAonline
Despite improved risk appetite
FOS award limit increase
Relates to 136 million transaction reports
Ceremony will take place 13 November