Aifa has accused the FSA of failing to conduct proper research before publishing its retail distribution review discussion paper.
Speaking at Positive Solutions’ annual forum in Birmingham last week, director general Chris Cummings slammed the FSA for commissioning further market research on the issue.
He said: “Speculation is fine but I wish they would have looked at the evidence rather than spending money on market research now.”
Cummings also said the industry needs more advisers not fewer if it is to prevent the savings gap turning into a savings chasm and there is too much focus on qualifications in the RDR.
He said: “It has become easier to rack up £1m of debt than put a few thousand into a term insurance policy. We have fallen out of love with the savings culture. It is about time we started to educate the regulator that this is a social debate and not just about exams.”
But FSA spokesman Alan Mason, part of the regulator’s RDR team, urged IFAs to respond to the proposals, stressing the objective was not to reduce the number of advisers or to eradicate commission.
Mason said: “It is not our desire to see the market contract. We really want to see the market grow and extend to reach more consumers. We are not wedded to these proposals, we are listening.”