News & Views – August 2019

Andy Bell, CEO - AJ Bell

Enter a new Prime Minister and a new cabinet. Clearly much of their focus will be on the UK’s exit from the European Union, but life goes on and with new regimes and appointments comes the opportunity for change.

Removing complexity in our industry is always at the top of my agenda and, to further this goal, I want AJ Bell to take the lead on simplifying ISAs.

In this edition of News & Views, I introduce a new policy paper on ISA simplification and our proposals for the ‘One ISA’, as written by our technical director, Peter Hopkins.

ISA simplification

ISAs started life as a very simple, tax-efficient savings product. Over the years, various changes and additions to the product have made them unnecessarily complicated, with at least six variations in existence depending on how you look at it.

This policy paper outlines our vision for One ISA and how the existing versions can be consolidated into a single product. What’s more, we think it can be implemented in a way that is cost neutral to the Government whilst still providing incentives to save for specific purposes.

We intend to follow up our introduction to One ISA with further papers to highlight the finer detail of the proposals and what the Government may need to consider and consult upon. I hope my open letter to the new Chancellor will encourage HM Treasury to engage with the process and we’d really value your opinion on this topic. This short survey should take no more than three minutes to complete and the answers will be used on an anonymised basis as part of this campaign.


Andy co-founded AJ Bell in 1995, having spent a number of years working within the financial services sector. Graduating from Nottingham University in 1987 with a first class degree in Mathematics, he qualified as a Fellow of the Institute of Actuaries in 1993 and has built AJ Bell into one of the UK’s largest investment platforms.