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Advisers see surge in ISA transfer demand


Advisers are seeing a surge in demand for ISA transfers as savers worry about a lack of real savings choice, according to research from MetLife.

Its study among specialist advisers shows demand for cash and stocks & shares ISA transfer advice is rising.
Around 35 per cent of advisers say they have seen an increase in demand for support with cash ISA transfers while nearly two out of five (39 per cent) report a rise in demand for stocks & shares ISA transfers.
The adviser experience mirrors the growing discontent among savers with up to one in four ISA customers – the equivalent of five million people – considering moving their money because of worries over performance, MetLife research estimates.
Cash ISA customers are nearly four times as likely to consider transferring their funds, the study found, with 19 per cent of cash ISA savers considering moving compared with 5 per cent of stocks & shares ISA investors.
However, advisers are worried about the lack of saving and investing options for clients considering transferring – around two out of five advisers say cash ISA alternatives are hard to find as rates in general are too low while 22 per cent are concerned that an equity market slide could hit savings.
Simon Massey, wealth management director at MetLife UK, says: “Transferring ISA holdings in this environment makes sense. There is an important role for advisers to help clients with finding alternatives which suit their goals.
“With more than GBP518 billion invested in ISAs it is a potentially massive market in which advisers can really add value for clients. However, savers need to be made more aware of the options available. Particularly those who want to retain a level of certainty they get from cash but also want to benefit from the potential for growth from stocks & shares ISAs.
“The need for advice in ISA transfers has never been stronger, particularly when choices are being narrowed by the lower for longer interest rate challenge.”
Advisers are particularly concerned about the need for ISA advice in the run-up to retirement, the research shows. Around 47 per cent say they would consider transferring client funds into ISAs which provide guaranteed capital lumps sums and offer the potential for growth ahead of retirement.

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