CompaniesMay 30 2013

RDR has left vulnerable annuitants out in the cold: survey

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ByKevin White

The retail distribution review has affected society’s most vulnerable people badly and has not helped to meet their need to maximise their retirement income, research has found.

A survey of 40 of the retirement industry’s key decision makers by pension administrator and annuity provider Equiniti Paymaster, revealed that 59 per cent believed that the gap in advice had not been dealt with by the RDR.

Some 39 per cent of respondents disagreed that the advice gap would be filled by the proliferation of non-advised sales, while a further 20 per cent strongly disagreed. It added that the poor, those with small pension pots, and those in poor health were likely to lose out most.

The findings were gleaned from Equiniti’s 2013 annuity survey, which sought the views of an entire annuity supply chain, from product and service providers to retirement planning consultants, regulators, and employee benefit consultants.

Furthermore, less than a third of respondents believed that the objectives of the RDR had been achieved, with respondents feeling customers misunderstood why advice came at a cost.

Keith Boughton, director at Equinity Paymaster, said: The RDR has created a set of challenges for both advisers and providers. It is clear that there is still some way to go in order to deliver the optimum solution for all annuitants.

“It is also clear that it remains a highly emotive issue. One senior respondent went so far as to call the industry’s pricing structures even more opaque, messy and difficult to compare than they were pre-RDR.

“The industry needs to move beyond the confines of the RDR in order to provide increased customer protection and fair and transparent pricing.”