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Transact staff to return to the office

Staff at adviser platform Transact will start to return to the office from August as the platform pilots a hybrid working model.

Some staff will return to the firm’s City of London-based firm during August with all staff members to return in September, according to the platform’s latest update for financial advisers from CEO Jonathan Gunby.

The platform will be piloting a hybrid working model with a minimum of three days each week in the office for full-time staff.

Mr Gunby said that while working from home has been effective, the firm has found that some things are better done at the office.

He thanked advisers for their patience during the home-working period and acknowledged that the platform, “hasn’t always met, in every respect, some of the same high standards of the pre-pandemic era.”

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The platform has also undergone a ‘campus refresh’ to support the highbred working model.

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Treasury must fix £17bn pensions error say MPs

MPs on the influential Public Accounts Committee (PAC) have published a damning report criticising the Treasury for failing to fix what it calls a £17bn error on public service pensions that has disadvantaged younger workers, women and other groups.

The PAC reports says the Treasury should have foreseen age discrimination issues that gave rise to the 2018 McCloud judgment.

The McCloud judgement found the Government had discriminated against younger pension scheme members by not giving them the same protection as older workers.

In 2011 and 2015 the Treasury introduced reforms designed to make public service pensions more sustainable and affordable, but a 2018 Court of Appeal judgement (the McCloud judgement) then ruled parts of the reforms were unlawful.

According to MPs on the PAC, instead of fixing the problem the Treasury now wants pension scheme members to pay the estimated £17 billion cost to fix the mistake, despite the Treasury

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Editor’s Column: Let the banter return

It was good to get away last week for a break to sunny Devon, beating the G7 hordes heading to the South West. 

We stayed in the lovely seaside town of Sidmouth and had a very pleasant week, our first holiday since last year (apologies if you haven’t been away yet, I know it can be irritating hearing about others’ holidays).

The hotel and staff were great, if a little rusty at times, having just been opened for a couple of weeks, in line with the Covid restrictions. I did sense, however, that many were relieved and pleased to be back to work.

We actually booked the hotel in January, taking a punt that holidays would return. It paid off but the fact we could cancel at any time before going was a welcome insurance policy.

I am glad we did not dither in booking though because dithering and procrastination

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Hybrid models the future of Financial Planning – report

Hybrid robo advice and traditional advice models are the future of Financial Planning according to a new report.

Advice delivery could be up to 80% faster for firms that adopt a hybrid advice model, according to the report from technology provider Ignition and consultancy firm Altus Consulting.

The report claims that hybrid advice ‘a method of advice provision whereby technology enhances, rather than replaces, the work of a financial adviser’ is the way forward for Financial Planning firms looking to offer a better consumer experience.

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Terry Donohoe, CEO Europe at Ignition, said the Coronavirus pandemic forced Financial Planners and their clients to rely on technology more than ever before. He claims this change has provided a “much-needed impetus to encourage businesses to re-think old habits and provide what is actually a better consumer experience.”

He said: “We have seen that there is real demand in the UK financial

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Aegon unveils financial wellbeing tool for the nation

Pensions and investment company Aegon has launched a Financial Wellbeing tool aimed at helping 45m UK adults assess their personal financial wellbeing and how to make improvements.

The new tool is based on Aegon’s recent Financial Wellbeing Index which analyses people’s financial health and the influence that mindset plays in influencing financial wellbeing and Financial Planning decision-making. 

The report found that more than 19m people (36%) in the UK are struggling with their financial wellbeing and that just 16% of the population (around 8.6m people) combine healthy finances and a positive money mindset.

Some 12%, or nearly 6.5m people, scored poorly in terms of financial wellbeing and financial mindset.

With this in mind, Aegon believes 5 in 6 of the population, or 45m people, could take action to improve their financial wellbeing. This view has inspired the launch of the tool to everyone, not just Aegon customers, the firm says.

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£75bn into adult ISAs in 2019/20

Savers paid £75bn into 13m new adult ISAs in the 2019/20 tax year, a rise of £7.1bn year-on-year, according to the latest ISA statistics from HMRC.

At the end of the 2019/20 tax year, UK savers held a total of £620bn in ISAs, a rise of 6% year-on-year and a new record.

More women invested in ISAs than men in with 10.5m women investing using ISAs compared to 9.7m men, according to the latest gender split data also released today (2018/19 tax year). However, despite this, the gender ISA gap was £2,991 in 2018/19, up from £2,812 a year earlier, and almost doubling in a decade (from £1,550 in 2008/9).

The number of cash ISAS opened rose 1.2m year-on-year whilst stocks and shares ISAs rose 300,000.

Payments into cash ISAs rose £4.8bn (to £48.7bn) whereas payments into stocks and shares ISAs rose £1.6bn (to £24.2bn) year-on-year.

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Tom Selby,

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Business Organizations

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Business Banking Companies

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