Advisers say the regulator is being hypocritical and a “killjoy” after it launched a crackdown on “extravagant” hospitality in its final guidance on inducements.
The guidance, published last week, set out criteria for hospitality which is acceptable for advisers to receive from providers.
These include that the event is designed for business purposes and that payments for food and drink are proportionate and any overnight accommodation only paid for where necessary.
The FCA is concerned that hospitality is creating inducements to sell products and undermining the RDR.
Thameside Financial Planning director Tom Kean says: “Corporate jollies are an important part of relationship building and are allowed in other professions. The regulator is being a killjoy.”
But Paladin Financial Services managing director Tim Purdon says: “This does not affect us. No doubt some advisers will be very disappointed to lose their nice perks but I have no sympathy for them.”
Yet Purdon believes the FCA will have to look at its own actions in order to police the rules properly.
He says: “It may be difficult for regulators to use their own judgement if they think £500 a night is reasonable.”
The FCA recently spent almost £15,000 on a board 48 hour “away day” at a five star hotel at a cost of £500 per head.
Plan Money director Peter Chadborn says: “If advisers keep a new business register and a record of the hospitality events they attend, they should be able to prove they are not influenced by marketing spend.”