HC Deb 11 March 2003 vol 401 c128W
Mr. Stephen O'Brien

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer (1) what research he has commissioned to gauge the take-up of ISAs amongst new investors; [102123]

(2) how many investors have opened ISA accounts who did not previously hold a PEP or TESSA; and how much money has been invested in ISA accounts by investors who previously did not hold a PEP or TESSA; [102122]

(3) how many people have taken out an ISA in each year since 1998; [102114]

(4) what targets he has set regarding the uptake of ISAs in the UK. [102116]

Ruth Kelly

The table gives available estimates of the number of individuals who held ISAs in the first three years following their introduction in 1999. It is not yet possible to break down these estimates further into how many previously held either a TESSA or PEP.

Number of individuals holding ISAs
1999–2000 2000–01 2001–02
8.5 12.5 14.0

The Government has no official target regarding the uptake of ISAs in the UK. However, ISAs are intended to give plenty of scope for people to begin saving, and for those who already save to save more. Since ISAs began in April 1999, over £100 billion has already been subscribed to them and within three years of their introduction an estimated 14 million individuals—some one in four adults—had an ISA. This is six million more than had either a TESSA or a PEP in 1998–99, their last and most successful year.

The Inland Revenue is currently analysing administrative data collected for compliance purposes to see if it could be used to give further detail on individual investors, including whether or not they previously held a TESSA or PEP. It is hoped that further estimates may be available later this year.

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