The independent action group for current and ex Equitable Life policyholders, funded by contributions.

Equitable Members Action Group

Equitable Members Action Group Limited, a company limited by guarantee, number 5471535 registered in the UK

Correspondence: 10/07/2002 - Response to Alex Henney's letter to Vanni Treves dated 13/6/02

Response to Alex Henney's letter to Vanni Treves dated 13/6/02:

10 July 2002.

Dear Mr. Henney,

Thank you for your letter of the 13 June addressed to Vanni Treves. I am responding on his behalf.

Some of the information you request is beyond that which might be reasonably expected from any business, in an industry, seeking to maintain efficient operations and protect the interests of its customers or members.

The Society now publishes an Interim Report as well as the Annual Report and Accounts for the year ending 31 December. In these publications we detail the corporate activities of the period and a comprehensive financial report. We do not intend to produce selective corporate information outside of these reporting periods, which would be potentially misleading and costly. Much of the information requested is not, in any case, readily available and would become quickly out of date given current market uncertainty. To give any individual or small group selective information would be unfair to all other policyholders. The Interim Report, for the period ending 30 June, will be published in the autumn and made available to all policyholders by post and on our website.

On the matter of the FSA returns, clearly there was some confusion regarding availability of the annual returns brought about, we understand, by the new procedures introduced for filing. Like all parties concerned, we can learn from this too and, hopefully, next year will be a smoother process for all concerned. Very few policyholders have requested a copy. The FSA returns underline that the Society remained solvent and met the regulator's stringent required minimum margins for solvency.

I note your possible intent to post this correspondence on the Internet and issue it to journalists. You are, of course, free to do so and we have no problem in dealing with any journalist who may wish to speak with us on this matter. I fail to see, however, what the news value would be.

Yours sincerely,

Tony McGarahan

Chief Communications Officer

Equitable Life Assurance Society