Savings slump blamed on government

27 August 2004
An industry magazine has urged policymakers to stop whinging about people not saving enough and start creating some more attractive savings vehicles.

APCIMS chief executive Angela Knight explains in Qreview that if savings are to become attractive options again, then policymakers must make an attractive tax regime for all forms of saving.

According to the magazine, this must include restoring tax credits on ISAs, increasing capital gains tax thresholds and improving the pension framework.

The article added that where there is a problem, rather than complain about it, policymakers must target the criticism, highlight the solution and stop the "slash and burn" denigration of the industry.

Further regulatory change must also be minimised to reduce additional costs to the saver, the article continues, as well as recognising the essential part advice plays in helping an individual decide how to save.

Ms Knight concluded: "I do not pretend that the industry is perfect, but where firms have been at fault, people have been recompensed accordingly. Of greater impact has been the removal of the tax credits on pensions and now on the equity ISA.

"Advice does not come free but it is not unaffordable either. Anyone who has called out a plumber lately to unblock the drains will probably find that decent financial advice cost less."
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