MetLife UK closes to new wealth management business on low interest rates

Metlife UK is closing its wealth management arm to new business, saying low interest rates have made it difficult for the division to deliver value for the company.

Metlife has told regulators and service providers of its plans and is writing to existing customers and their advisers.

The company will now look to grow its employee benefits and individual protection businesses.

According to a statement, illustrations for new wealth management business will stop at 5pm on 7 July with applications accepted until 5pm on 28 July.

Metlife UK managing director Dominic Grinstead says: “Our wealth management business has grown to £5bn assets under management since launch in 2007, which is a testament to the hard work and commitment of our staff and the success of our products.

“However, while our wealth management products deliver good outcomes for our customers, the ongoing challenge of long-term low interest rates has made it difficult to deliver value for Metlife. After thorough analysis, we have decided to focus on our employee benefits and individual protection business.”

He adds: “We will work with our colleagues to support them as we go through this important transition. We are committed to providing the highest level of service to our customers and financial advisers.”

In 2015, Metlife launched a lower-cost guaranteed drawdown product that it claimed was the first genuine innovation following the introduction of pension freedoms.