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Aifa’s Chris Cummings says advisers feel “let down” by RDR

Aifa director general Chris Cummings says small IFA firms have been “let down and trampled on” by today’s retail distribution review announcement.

Speaking at the FSA RDR conference today in London, Cummings hit out at the FSA for changing its mind on the advice sales split.

He said: “The FSA had a moment of clarity on this and I applaud them for that moment but they were put under pressure from others in the industry to change the proposals.”

Small firms feel let down and trampled on. Yet again the bar for IFAs has been pushed up far higher than for anyone else.”

Cummings also hit out at the FSA’s new proposals for capital adequacy.

He said: “At a time when IFA firms, like other small businesses are struggling to cope with the economic turbulence it is deeply distressing that the regulator is proposing to disproportionately increase firms’ capital requirements.

“And the move to expenditure based calculations will be detrimental. For example, the potential impact on a firm of 20 advisers with approximately £1.6million costs could see its prudential requirements radically increase from around £10,000 to around £300,000.

“We are yet to see any justification from the FSA as to why this huge increase is being introduced and they could not have chosen a more damaging time. We oppose this proposal and call on that the FSA demonstrate the rationale for making this change.”

Cummings told delegates he thought IFAs had little to fear from the 2012 deadline to make QCA level 4.

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