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Banks expected to set their own exams to ward off poaching

Raising minimum qualification requirements for the sales advice channel to QCA level four will not provide a good source of recruits to the advice sector, says Money Portal head of distribution strategy Alan Easter.

He told the RDR round table that banks will develop their own QCA level four qualifications covering only their own products to stop IFA firms poaching their salesforces.

Easter said: “If the benchmark is set at QCA level four, Barclays can create its own exam on Barclays’ products and services. It is not going to put its staff through the general qualification because IFAs will nick them. Our recruitment pool has always been banks and tied agents. This will build in a further barrier via regulation. If the minimum qualification for everyone is the CII diploma, consumers will have a fixed point of reference.”

Technology & Technical founder Kim North said this is already happening in banks. She said: “This is not the future. Banks are walking into the ifs School of Finance, telling it what they want in the exam and the exam is ready to go three months later.”

North said the advice market should be driven by competency, not qualifications. She said: “I know advisers who are chartered and certified and cannot give advice because they do not understand products and do not listen to people. Just because you have high qualifications does not mean that you are good at your job.”


FSA fines Egg £721,000 for PPI failings

The FSA has fined Egg Banking £721,000 for serious failings in its sales of credit card payment protection insurance and it is likely to have to pay significant sums in compensation.

Survivor instincts

As investors, we are accustomed to weighing risk and opportunity but the fluid economic and earnings’ environment means that the size and nature of the risks are changing, seemingly on a daily basis. By the same token, the shifting landscape is creating significant long-term opportunities.


Employer iPMI responsibilities could continue to escalate, says Jelf

New laws in Dubai will put the burden of providing international private medical insurance (iPMI) firmly on the shoulders of the employer in order to maintain the country’s leading healthcare facilities. With 10,000 UK nationals having moved to the country since 2007 and only 16.5 per cent of the total 8.2 million people living there being Emiratis, Jelf Employee Benefits believes this move was inevitable and employer responsibilities could continue to escalate in future.


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