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FSA: Adviser numbers fell 12% in RDR build-up

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The number of retail investment advisers working in the UK plummeted almost 12 per cent in the run-up to the RDR deadline, FSA research reveals.

According to the regulator, there were 35,899 retail investment advisers in Summer 2012 – a fall of 11.5 per cent on the previous year.

IFAs were the largest group, representing 58 per cent of all RIAs, followed by advisers in banks or building societies at 19 per cent.

Some 89 per cent of the 1,436 advisers surveyed said they are definitely or likely to remain an RIA, while 6 per cent were planning to leave the industry.

The remaining 5 per cent said they would retire as planned, had not yet decided what they would do or were unsure of their prospects.

The FSA says it will publish a full report detailing the findings of the survey shortly.

This follows separate research published by the FSA in November which suggested around 12 per cent of IFAs are likely to switch to offering restricted advice post-RDR.

Hudson Green & Associates principal Ian Hudson says: “The RDR is a fundamental regulatory change so it was inevitable that some people would fall out of the industry.

“I do not think it is a major concern now but it will be if these numbers are replicated over the next few years.”

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