Picking up a PEP with the groceries

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The Independent Online
Shoppers could soon be able to pick up a Tessa at Tesco or an investment savings scheme at Safeway as the high street chains compete to become to become Britain's first financial supermarket, according to a new report out yesterday.

The groups are poised to cash in on existing customer loyalty promotions by extending them into the financial products field. And they could benefit from the reluctance of consumers to buy insurance products from their bank or building society, according to the market research organisation, Mintel. Its survey found that fewer than one in three adults would buy an insurance product from their bank or building society and that the majoritypreferred to shop around.

The report says a number of large retailers have moved into financial services over the last 10 years. It cites Marks & Spencer and Virgin as prime examples of those which have exploited opportunities open to them and says the next step may be tie-ups or takeovers of life assurance companies by retailers.