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More Fidelity Needed On pensions

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More Fidelity Needed On Pensions

Here is a clear sign that you are old and boring: reading your pension statements.

The one in front of me from Fidelity relates to a Daily Telegraph fund that I haven’t paid into for about 20 years. Still, it is a tidy sum of money. Though a bit less tidy than it was a year ago.

My money is down 5% in the year to June, which is not that surprising in the circumstances, though the FTSE 100 is down much less than that over a similar period.

My beef is that there is no explanation of why Fidelity has lost me more than £10,000.

It’s not that I’m down, it’s that Fidelity isn’t telling me what is going on.

The statement is signed by the head of client services, so at some level it is a sales document.

It’s also a PR document, though the PR people presumably weren’t involved.

Down 5% after the year we have had doesn’t require some elaborate mea culpa, but a bit of “here is what we got wrong” seems merited.

Even a bit of, “we did a good job for you in the circumstances, here is why” would work too.

There’s a breakdown of where the money is invested – 12% is in something called the Fid Telegraph Emerging Markets Equity Index – but no news on how those individual funds have done.

This just seems a bit lacking.

When I get the semi-annual statements from FundSmith, the news is usually good.

When it isn’t, Terry Smith explains why not.

The tone is – here’s what we can’t possibly know, here is why we don’t buy shares in company x, here are your numbers.

It’s reassuring, straight forward.

Fidelity is a great business really. This isn’t its best work.

Press release of the day

More than £1.5 billion will be spent in the West End over eight weeks of Christmas trading, says this from the New West End Company.

That is up 24% on a year ago, but still far down on pre-Covid levels.

Dee Corsi said: “Whilst I’m heartened to see the West End’s recovery continue to grow this winter, for us to succeed in the long-term we need to ensure that the nation’s high street and the wider country remains globally competitive.”

Stories that will keep rolling

1) Will BT end up bailing out failed “alternet” telecom firms?

2) Are Sainsbury customers trading down?

3) Will the Bank go for a half, three-quarter, or full-point rise?

4) Is Airbnb over Covid?


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