Cleary does not understand how packagers operate

From Vic Jannels

Alan Cleary’s comments in the analysis piece entitled ‘Should those who have been negative about packagers apologise to the sector?’ (Mortgage Strategy May 29) suggests a worrying ignorance of how packagers work, and the wider mortgage industry.

While he is correct in his assertion that adding value is critical, the continuing success of packagers long after many commentators including Cleary predicted their demise surely demonstrates a continuing ability to do so.

Technology does not, as he suggests, present us with a greater challenge than at any other time and is certainly not causing the demise of packagers. It facilitates the process and removes the grind. It does not affect packagers’ ability to add value which is achieved not only by distribution through “pockets of brokers”, but also because the packager’s role has always been to add value through product innovation and anticipating demand.

The changing nature of customers, driven by increased indebtedness and socio-economic trends such as inc-reased levels of bankruptcy and a more flexible approach to working, means that the forward-looking approach of packagers will come to be increasingly valued. Until technology is capable of harnessing and managing all this, there will be a key role in the market for packagers.

Vic Jannels

Executive chairman

AToM

By emailFrom Noel Broadgate

You’d think that having been in financial services since John Prescott had a Cinquecento I would be reasonably cynical by now, but things still occur daily that make me smile. Here are a few.

I understand the raison d’etre of Home Information Packs is to provide full and accurate information to potential buyers about a properties that are for sale. Is this not what estate agents already do, or is someone saying they can’t be trusted?

I once bought single premium ASU, it was added to the loan, the interest was less than equivalent monthly cover premiums, it paid out when I was ill and was not cancelled thereafter. So why the long face?

Alliance & Leicester says it has responded to the antagonism surrounding 0870 numbers. The list of useful contacts that accompanied its letter contained 10 phone and fax numbers of which only four were not 0870 numbers.

We all smile at celebrity adverts, myself in particular at Michael Winner advertising a car insurance policy that specifically bars members of the entertainment industry, a film star advertising low-cost hair products when we all know she spends 7,000 a week at Cherie Blair’s hairdresser and Alan Sugar making his fortune by way of premium bonds. If an individual has been misled by an advertisement, there are appropriate channels for complaint and retribution and as a last resort the ultimate sanction – boycott Countdown.

Noel Broadgate

Sunrise Mortgages Bacup Lancashire