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Example of initial disclosure document

Below and on the right we publish the
FSA’s example of a menu given in an annex to the regulator’s rules
published last week for depolarisationFirms will have until June 1,
2005 to provide consumers with a copy of the menu and initial
disclosure document which are published on these pages. Companies
which choose to depolarise before June 2005 must comply from the date
they depolarise with the new disclosure regime, which allows
customers to compare commission rates with the market averageThe FSA
is launching a consumer education campaign to ensure that consumers
understand that the cost of advice does not necessarily convey best
value.

The general message of the campaign will be to tell consumers that
depolarisation brings with it a greater choice of investment advice,
that advice has a cost, that comparing costs should help consumers
shop around for what is best for them and that there are different
ways to pay for advice.

The campaign will focus on the key facts brand, which the FSA hopes
will emphasise to consumers that documents branded with the logo are
important and should be read.

The policy statement says: “We confirm that we intend to support
implementation of the menu with a consumer education programme. This
campaign will emphasis that the cost of advice does not necessarily
convey best value.”

Simply Biz chairman Ken Davy says: “I welcome the FSA saying it will
educate the consumer but it is unclear what they mean by ‘cost of
advice doesn’t necessarily convey best value’. The FSA could be going
beyond its remit if they are looking to restructure the
marketplace.”

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