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I’m a big fan of Monty Python and the famous ‘nudge, nudge’ sketch came to mind this week as the DWP announced plans to give a ‘stronger nudge’ to pension savers to seek guidance from Pension Wise before taking benefits.

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I think we can all agree that any suggestion that in-specie pension contributions were a viable option for those who were asset rich but cash poor has now been revoked, even if the pensions tax manual (PTM) still implies that it could be possible.

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It’s hard to find a silver lining in current Covid cloud but one of them may be a boost to recruiting the next generation of Financial Planners.

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It's true that not all Financial Planners are keen on the free, impartial and independent guidance service, Pension Wise. 

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A couple of surveys we reported on this week reminded me about the epic scale of pension ignorance among the great British public.

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When I was much younger, I remember writing on my CV that I had “excellent written and oral communication skills.” 

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Well done to all the Financial Planning firms who have been taking part in the CISI’s Financial Planning Week this week. I applaud your efforts. I just wish there were more of you.

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It was with a little fear, back in July, that I read the Public Accounts Committee’s proposal that HMRC should, within 12 months, evaluate the impact of pensions tax relief. 

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In my last article for Financial Planning Today - My 50 year career in pensions - I reflected on my 50 years in the world of pensions and financial services and commented on what I saw as some of the dominant features.

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In a sea of bad news there was a small island of cheerfulness this week, at least for the Financial Planning profession.

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