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98 small firms lose permission over RMAR failures

The FSA cancelled the permissions of 151 small firms in 2006-07 compared with 161 the previous year, with 98 failing to submit RMAR returns.

The regulator says the figures prove it is continuing to take a tough stance towards small firms that fail to meet its minimum standards despite its move towards a more principle-based approach.

The majority of small firms which failed to meet its minimum standards did not submit their retail mediation activities return, despite reminders.

In 2005-06, 107 firms out of 161 failed to submit their RMAR returns.

Aifa deputy director general Fay Goddard believes the majority of failures were in the secondary insurance sector, for example, car dealers selling general insurance, and says advisers are coping well with the reporting requirements.

She says: “Initially, RMAR was quite a challenge but we have helped our members through this. From an initial scan, most of these failures were in the secondary market. For these firms, the regulatory requirements have obviously proved too consuming.”

FSA director of small firms Stephen Bland says: “The action we take against firms which do not comply with our minimum standards and our tough stance on firms’ continued failure to submit the RMAR is working.

“Ensuring that firms implement and maintain these conditions is a priority for us.


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