Pressure is mounting on introducers and ARs

James Coney

James Coney

And regulators are clearly sick of the same old companies pulling the same old antics over complaints.

For most good advice businesses this won’t matter. But if you use ARs or introducers then it is time to pay attention – the regulator is coming for you.

Pension benefits

Doctors, teachers, civil servants and university staff get very angry if you tell them they have a great pension.

And they all really do, even with future reforms.

As all advisers know the real benefit is in the cost of the protection they supply: against longevity, for spouses, income and inflation.

What is interesting is how often those in defined benefit talk about the upsides of defined contribution, particularly the ability to be able to take your pension early, manage your pot as you wish, and also protect it for inheritance.

This upside is emphasised regularly, but not the plusses of the guarantees offered by DB schemes. 

The more everyone can talk about the cost of providing this, the more we can help people understand the real benefits of retirement planning.

Christmas greetings

As we near Christmas the dross in my inbox is even greater than normal.

“Just following up to check if our cryptocurrency Christmas jumper could work for any articles you have planned..." says one. 

“The big Christmas lights switch-on will be December 9 – two weeks later than last year,” says the next.

“Claus for concerns: 26% drop in Christmas tree sellers,” announces one more.

“How is Santa affected by new build homes,” questions a further email.

And “responsible funds continue to offer best alternatives for investors,” says another.

Oh, hang on. That last one’s not a joke. 

James Coney is money editor of The Times and Sunday Times