Friday, 4 January 2008

Fidelity replies... again

The mystery deepens... I've just got home from work to find a response from Fidelity. In my last letter I asked them if they planned to make future donations to the Tories, and why they have only made donations to the Tories. I also made it clear that I needed to know whether they plan to make future donations as this will affect whether we keep our savings with them.

They don't answer either question, and what's more it turns out that they have a policy not to discuss their future plans for political donations which applies to all clients, so unfortunately they can't tell me. It would be interesting to see if a pension fund client would receive the same response.

In the meantime I'm going to think over what to do next. Clearly I don't want to leave our money with a Tory-supporting fund manager. But equally I don't want to go through the hassle and expense of switching if the donations have ceased. If Fidelity donated to the Tories in Q4 of 2007 this probably won't appear on the Electoral Commission website for another month or so.

I'll update you with our future plans shortly, until then here's the latest letter. (by the way my surname isn't XXX, unfortunately)

Dear Mr XXX

Thank you for your letter regarding Fidelity donations received on 18 December 2007. I am sorry you were not satisfied with our response.

I understand you want a clear answer on the intention behind Fidelity's donations, and our future plans regarding our donations.

As previously stated, we make donations to political parties as part of a wider programme of activity to foster debate on key policy issues that may affect our clients. All our donations are made public through the electoral commission's website and are available for all to see.

I must reiterate that we cannot discuss our plans for future donations. I'm sorry I cannot be of any further help in this regard, but this is a Fidelity policy inclusive of all clients and we cannot make an exception in this case.

I appreciate that you disagree with particular donations that have been previously made by Fidelity, and that these may affect your decision regarding your investment with us. We greatly value your business and are saddened that you are considering moving your investments elsewhere due to this issue. Unfortunately, we cannot change our position on this matter.

If you remain dissatisfied with my response, you can refere your complaint to the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS), at the address that was given in my previous correspondence.

If you should require any further information please do not hesitate to contact me directly on XXX. My extension number is XXX and I am available Minday to Friday from 9am to 6pm.

Yours sincerely


John Gray said...

Hi Tom

Well done. I’ve finally drafted a similar letter to Fidelity following complaints by UNISON members whose pension funds employ Fidelity to manage their contributions. I’ll email a copy to you tomorrow.

Tom P said...

Hi John

sounds very interesting, sed it to my home email -

I have also had a few other ideas about how to take this further.