A bonus point win for the PMS!

pmslogo_smallA letter today from Mr Arthur Boyd, the Administrator of the Presbyterian Mutual Society, reports that over 99% of the PMS members and creditors voted in favour of the rescue package which was proposed to them. This package means that no saver with the PMS will have less than 77% of their savings returned to them immediately, and many will receive substantially more than that. The rescue package also allows for the possibility that, given favourable economic conditions in the next number of years, all savers will get 100% of their money back.

I have to say that this is a great outcome for everyone who has been involved in seeking a resolution to this crisis since it first began in October 2008. I pay tribute to my colleague, Rev Dr Donald Patton, who got the campaign going, to the Lobby Group under the leadership of Ian McGimpsey and Isobel White, to those who advised and supported me, and to our representatives in both Houses at Westminster who lobbied and campaigned for us. Particular thanks are due to members of the Northern Ireland Executive and especially to the former DETI Minister, Arlene Foster, and her officials for putting the details of the package together. And of course, Arthur Boyd, has played a leading role in getting us to this outcome. A big thank you to everyone who has worked so hard and so effectively.

What makes this a “bonus point win” is the fact that Mr Boyd reports that 33% of the PMS savers have voted to make an additional voluntary deferment, thereby raising the Church’s contribution to over £2 million and thus ensuring that all smaller savers with less than £20,000 in the Society will get all their money back. That gives me particular pleasure since the needs of the smaller savers have been our primary motivation in seeking a solution to this crisis.

Above all, we give thanks to Almighty God for answered prayer.

23 Replies to “A bonus point win for the PMS!”

  1. Nobody has put more effort into this than yourself, you have worked extremely hard over a number of years to bring about this result, well done.

  2. JSC,
    Thank you for your dedication and leadership in the process. The lobby group were excellent and their efforts helped focus the saver.It is satisfying to note that the small savers like the orphans, widows and sick in the Bible have been looked after. My group took a big hit but by faith and God’s will we will still achieve our objective,a little later than we wanted but having been tested yet come through wiser and more committed.

  3. Dr Carson, may I on behalf of all savers in PMS thank you for your help,determination and encouargement over these past two years. The situation you inheritted as Moderator was dreadfully difficult. In your year in office and to date you have been a superb ambassodor, representing savers, salvaging much of PCI’s reputation and above all representing our Lord in some very challenging situations.
    Thank you.

  4. Dr Carson, On behalf of all savers thank you so very much for your committed efforts and leadership through very dark days and for helping to bring us back into the the great light of hope. You and your strong team have been a tower of strength as have the PMS Savers lobby group who also fought so hard on our behalf. Without you all this great result would not have been possible. God Bless you all inthe days ahead and thank you from the bottom of my heart.

  5. Stafford, thank you so much for all your hard work in seeing the PMS matter through to a good conclusion. It is almost 3 years of uncertainty for a lot of us. The best thing of all is not just savers getting their money back but the christian witness and integrity that was maintained throughout the process. Praise be to our Lord.

  6. I just don’t understand the reasoning behind “big saver bad, small saver good”. Despite everyone lobbying, the “big” savers are the people who are paying for this. The flawed perception being that they can well afford it. No consideration has been given to the fact that small savers may have had other savings, or that the big savers may have had their whole future/children’s education/family commitments/retirement plans sunk into the PMS (let’s not forget – on the enthusiastic endorsement of PCI).
    This is far from a just and fair solution. Also I don’t understand the reasoning that if savers generously opted to defer part of their savings, that now becomes part of the “Churches” contribution. It’s ironic how when this all kicked off the Church didn’t want to know us. Now when we opt to defer payment, suddenly we are Presbyterians again. Funny old world.

  7. George – My parents are substanial savers and given the disasterous prognosis and the persistent difficulties in securing Govt help were only too happy to defer to assist small savers who to date have not received one penny. Those who received 12p in the £ already will have got in some cases a lot more than small savers own. Yes some may have savings elsewhere but that is pure speculation. In contrast the Govt will have received thousands of letters from small savers in deep financial distress many of whom are very elderly and vulnerable. It is not perfect but on the whole is an excellent outcome. Just think, if the PMS was covered by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme what would have happened. Small savers nothing – Creditors up to £50k and no more. I say we thank God today for his mercy and help. We continue to trust that in the future all savings will be returned.

  8. This is good news for all PMS savers including loan holders. The Administrator advises that a firesale would have returned less for loan holders than this resolution. Stafford Carson has shown excellent leadership. This outcome proves that those who critised him personally and in some cases anonymously were wrong to do so. Let’s not forget that the vast majority of savers suffered in silence and with dignity. Let’s not re-write history either. Church House badly handled this crisis as it broke. Not everybody named above covered themselves in glory.

  9. Thank you for all your hard work -it is much appreciated. This is good news for the local ecomomy especially the building trade -with a few new churches, church halls etc that will be built across our land in the months ahead. Maybe Dr Carson you will get the opportunity to assist with opening a few in the months, years ahead.

  10. Marvellous news Dr Carson. Thank you for all your hard work which has given us hope of actually seeing our hard earned savings again. You have been a fine ambassador for our difficult fight. You received many hard knock-backs, unwarranted criticism and you dusted yourself down and continued on for justice. Thanks too to Mr Arthur Boyd, the PMS lobby group and their advisors who have all done an admirable job. May the Lord bless you and your family at this time. Thanks again.

  11. I just wonder when some of our people will come into the real world and realise how fortuate they are. I am self-employed and have seen my pension fund, managed by highly reputable financial institutions, drop by 30% in value since the ‘crash’ in 2008. There is not a thing I can do about this. Thank you Dr Carson for all your hard work – you are a true example of practical christianity!!

  12. Your comment George is probably correct in purely factual terms but surely not morally. Large savers will have their money returned, speedily, with the possibility of reinvesting immediately. The alternatives would have been FSA maximum of £50,000 or liquidation a fire sale with all that entails and really poor returns. NAMA cannot commit to the market place.
    Andrew

  13. Stafford, grateful thanks for all your hard work and for giving so much of your time to Pres. Mut. Society. Prayers have been answered,so many people will be delighted with the outcome.Thanks again from a relieved saver and I am sure a great relief to you also.

  14. Relieved :Stafford, grateful thanks for all your hard work and for giving so much of your time to Pres. Mut. Society. Prayers have been answered,so many people will be delighted with the outcome.Thanks again from a relieved saver and I am sure a great relief to you also.

    Relieved :Stafford, grateful thanks for all your hard work and for giving so much of your time to Pres. Mut. Society. Prayers have been answered,so many people will be delighted with the outcome.Thanks again from a relieved saver and I am sure a great relief to you also.

  15. i am glad the savers large and small are getting their savings back,this now means that since there are no lobby groups or support groups for people who owe money, i now owe my loans to the government and since i can only just raise the capital with help from family it looks like im going to be made bankrupt to pay intrest as well or so the administrator tells me. im sure the pci will help home my 3 young children when our time is up

  16. Dear Dr Carson,We acknowledge the effort you have put in over the last 3 years, however it is very disappointing that you say you have been concerned primarily with the smaller savers as we were of the understanding that you were working on behalf of ALL PMS savers. The savings we had in the society were all we had for the future. We trusted the PMS as we did not think they were taking speculative risks, and we trusted you to do your best for us when it collapsed. In both cases we feel betrayed. I would like you please to tell us how it is fair and just that we have lost 23% of all our life savings, while knowing people who had less than £20000 in the PMS who get all their money back, regardless of need. As George pointed out, some smaller savers may have had other saving, and some of us larger savers had all we had in the PMS. You seem to have disregarded this concept, and by belittling our need have added to the pain. We were innocent victims of a regulatory failure-but it sure doesn’t feel like it.

  17. Joan and George; Your comments are valid and I too am in a similar situation as you describe. Two things though make me grateful for this outcome. Firstly we have the hope of a full return on our savings, the administrator rightly will be diligent in debt recovery. Secondly there was nowhere else to go with this other than liquidation, a disaster for all concerned. In his report the administrator points out that seven banks had looked at a takeover and all withdrew. Gordon Brown failed us completely. While no solution was ever going to be universally accepted unless it was 100% return, we have a good platform on which to build and move forward. 100% is achievable in the longer term.

  18. Well done Stafford. Thank you for all the effort and hard work you’ve put in on our behalf. Very much appreciated. God bless

  19. Loan holders stand to receive more of their savings under this outcome than in an immediate firesale. How is this a betrayal of larger savers?

  20. so am i right in saying as long as the savers get all their savings back then it dosen’t matter what way the other presbyterians who have loans pay them back.if the banks and government up to now didnt help support the pms then what chance has an ordinary working man who owes.

  21. Outstanding loans are owed to “Savers” with over £20K. All of whom will receive 15% less than the total amount saved and 33% of those savers have willingly agreed to leave up to a further 10% of savings with administrator in order that smaller savers receieve 100%.
    Let us all be clear, the majority of PMS loans are being repaid in full and on time, those members are fulfilling their legal and moral duty. As administrators last report shows too many have jumped on the bandwagon of non payment. Outstanding loans are owed to members of PMS NOT to government. We all need to understand this very simply fact, if all loans are repaid in full every PMS saver will have 100% return.As we heard at information evening and in written report Arthur Boyd assisted by John Hansen of KPMG will embark on debt recovery, this is clearly set out as a government condition of £175M loan.

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