Media and Public Affairs update
The Council published its Q2 2017 lending figures in July 2017, showing record activity for the sector and securing notable coverage in the Daily Telegraph, The Times, The Sunday Times, the Daily Mirror, and the Sunday Express, as well as coverage across key trade and consumer publications.
In September, The Council subsequently launched the Autumn 2017 Market Report, where one of the key findings was that the number of product options on the market has also reached a record high, while competition has driven average rates down to a record low. The report received positive coverage in national publications such as The Guardian and Daily Mail, as well as in trade and consumer titles.
City AM published a prominent opinion editorial by Nigel Waterson in August on how housing wealth will be crucial to plugging the gap in retirement savings. The Council has also contributed commentary to recent articles in the Daily Telegraph, Daily Mail, Mortgage Solutions and Pensions Expert.
Most recently, The Council announced the appointment of David Burrowes as incoming Chairman to succeed Nigel Waterson after almost six years of service through a successful period of growth for the industry.
The Council met Stephen Barclay MP, Economic Secretary to the Treasury in October to outline the impact of the Solvency II Directive on the equity release sector.
Prior to this, the Council also wrote to Nicky Morgan MP in her capacity as Chair of the House of Commons Treasury Committee, to encourage the committee to resume its Solvency II inquiry. The Treasury Select Committee has since declared it will conclude its inquiry, as set out in its Terms of Reference.
The FCA outlined its key findings of its occasional paper on ageing population and financial servicesat a launch event in October.
In September, the Council attended workshops hosted by the FCA. The session on retirement outcomes explored ways in which consumers could be encouraged to be more engaged in their financial decision making in retirement.
At the workshop on extending the senior managers and certification regime, the FCA outlined its intention to replace the current Approved Persons Regime and ensure individuals in financial services roles are more accountable for their conduct and competence. All members are encouraged to respond to the FCA consultation directly by 3 November.
Financial Guidance and Claims Bill
During the second committee day for the Financial Guidance and Claims Bill, peers highlighted the Council’s role in maintaining standards in the equity release sector, in the debate on including housing wealth in the remit of the forthcoming single finance guidance body.