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Standard Life offers one day annuity guarantee

In a move which has been condemned by many in the marketplace, Standard Life has confirmed that annuity quotes for its policies will be guaranteed for just one single day. In effect, if a customer retires either side of the retirement date on the original application form then the new Standard Life annuity quote is only guaranteed for one day. If the quote is posted to the customer then by the time the customer receives this quote it is literally out of date.

While the official explanation for the one-day guarantee, against a more common 10 day and 14 day guaranteed by competitors, is the volatility of the market, many people are questioning whether the company's £100 million compensation payment to investors affected by the fall in the cash fund has anything to do with this tightening of the belt?

The pensions industry is complex at the best of times and while there are no plans for competitors to introduce similar one-day guarantees this cannot be dismissed in the short to medium term. Those who are looking for advice about their pension funds and pension arrangements should take professional advice as the sector can be volatile and annuity rates can vary widely at the moment.

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