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FSA defends adviser crackdown

The FSA has defended its crackdown on small firms in light of the Northern Rock debacle by publishing an email exchange between the regulator and an adviser on its website.

FSA director of small firms Lesley Titcomb made the move of publishing a series of emails between herself and Temple Bar managing director Simon Mansell as several other advisers had written to her with similar concerns.

Mansell wrote to Titcomb, criticising the FSA’s treating customers fairly crackdown on small firms in the light of Northern Rock’s collapse and Financial Ombudsman Service figures which show the vast majority of complaints are about banks and insurers, not advisers.

Titcomb defended the policy, claiming many small firms are a long way off treating customers fairly.

She said: “It was clear the pace of progress had to increase if small intermediary firms were to meet the December 2008 TCF deadline of being able to demonstrate through the use of their own management information that they consistently treat their customers fairly. This led us to re-examine our approach towards small firms.”


City whistleblowers set to get plea-bargain for share scares

The Chancellor looks set to give the FSA new powers to offer City whistleblowers lesser sentences or immunity from prosecution in return for evidence on market abuse.The Government has voiced its concerns about such a system in the past but Alistair Darling believes that after the recent destabilisation of HBOS’s share price the move is […]

FSA fees could rise to pay for bank risk staff

Advisers are worried that their fees may increase to fund an FSA recruitment drive in the wake of its poor handling of the Northern Rock crisis.The FSA is to recruit up to 100 staff at a cost of £15m after its self-critical report highlighted the need for better quality supervisors and risk assessors.It wants to […]

Mouse trap

A few weeks ago, after one of those industry seminars which you find yourself attending for some mysterious reason and then wonder why you bothered, an IFA asked me what criteria I use to decide what topic to write about this column.


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