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FSA pressed to reveal RDC’s decision data

A law firm is petitioning the FSA under the Freedom of Information Act to reveal whether its regulatory decisions committee is anything more than “a hanging court”.

Financial Services Legal is writing to the FSA this week demanding to know the percentage of cases referred to the RDC which are then challenged by the committee.

FSL consultant Gareth Fatchett believes these statistics will show a very low number of cases going against the original FSA decision and call into question the ability of the RDC to act effectively.

The letter will request statistics for the number of warning notices issued by the RDC and the number of such notices following the regulatory process which move on to become “decision notices”.

The FSA produces statistics on its website on the number of cases referred to the RDC but it does not show the percentage of cases which are upheld by the committee.

The RDC has faced criticism following its role in the FSA/Legal & General endowment case.

Fatchett says: “The RDC has a quasi-judicial role to play in FSA enforcement proceedings. The statistics will demonstrate to what level warning notices are varied by the RDC. Is this anything more than a hanging court?”FSC Investment Services managing director Frank Cochran says: ” The RDC is not doing a good job and this would be a very interesting development. The FSA has to be accountable and hopefully these figures will provide more openness regarding procedure.”

FSA spokeswoman Eleanor Hughes says: “We will endeavour to answer all such enquiries that are made of us. If anybody wants information under this new act they should write and ask us.”FSAL&G – the lawyers’ verdict, p12

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