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FSA completes network probe but won’t name mystery four

The FSA’s investigation into the four mortgage networks that voluntarily agreed not to take on any new appointed representatives has closed but the identity of the quartet remains a mystery.

The regulator says its probe is complete but is tight-lipped on whether any of the four are now able to recruit or whether any action has been taken to prevent them hiring.

It is likely at least three of the four can continue recruiting as no enforcement action has been made public, as usually happens.

It is still not clear whether First4Brokers, which went into administration last month, is one of the four as its administrator Moore Stephens has yet to confirm or deny it was involved.

There has been a flurry of speculation about the identity of the firms since the FSA revealed in July that four of the 12 networks investigated had ceased recruiting ARs on a voluntary basis while they improved their systems.

FSA spokeswoman Sam Bennett says: “The project is now complete and we have reached a satisfactory regulatory conclusion in all cases.”

Legal & General housing director Stephen Smith says: “If it has reached a conclusion, let us hope that it is the only problem the FSA uncovered and let us hope it is not a widespread issue. I am confident that all the networks have their procedures in order.”


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