View from City Road: A timid ombudsman

You would think that the biggest pensions scandal in recent history, the Maxwell affair, would prompt everyone concerned with the industry's behaviour to speak out bravely when the need arises. Not so Michael Platt, the Pensions Ombudsman, whose timidity about naming names or pursuing recalcitrant firms that refuse to follow his recommendations fits uneasily with the times.

It is probably pointless urging him to be more belligerent. The answer is to attack the profusion of complaints procedures in personal finance by setting up a unified scheme, preferably linked to the new Personal Investment Authority. It would have a bigger brief, more money and - let us hope - more clout.

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