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Aifa and Ami lobby FSA for lower IFA fees

The Association of Independent Financial Advisers and the Association of Mortgage Intermediaries have called for the FSA to apportion more of its budget to the banks and high-risk sectors.

In its response to the FSA’s fee proposals Aifa and Ami say advisers should not pay more in fees because of the impact of the banks on the economy.

The groups are also calling for an exclusion from fee increases for the smallest IFA firms and is inviting the National Audit Office to review the FSA budgetary process and conduct a regular value for money assessment.

They also want a cost/benefit process in determining the FSA budget and a trimming of FSA priorities and projects so that the most important areas are looked at properly.

Aifa and Ami director of policy Andrew Strange says: “We want to see a regulator that has the respect of the firms it supervises. Firms must understand the funding regime and identify what they are asked to pay with what is delivered in the market – and feel the costs are fair and justified.

“We believe the current system looks out of step with the transparent nature of good regulation. A budget process that allows the board of the regulator to sign-off against its own budget plan looks outdated. In many ways, FSA should absent itself from the financial process and have its budget either set or approved, and certainly scrutinised, by an external body.”


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Absence management systems gone AWOL from UK’s SMEs, reports Jelf

A quarter (23 per cent)* of the UK’s small to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) do not have an absence management system in place, according to new research from Jelf Employee Benefits. Despite 69 per cent* of organisations having a system in place, three-quarters (75 per cent) report that it is not providing them with sufficiently empowering absence or health data to inform an effective wellbeing programme.


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