The FSA has issued a warning that while it wants to work with IFAs, this can only be achieved by a change of attitude within the independent sector.
In a letter to a sole trader, FSA managing director and former IFA supremo David Kenmir says there is no benefit in continuing dialogue with IFAs if they seek to blame the FSA and the Financial Ombudsman Service for the sector's ills.
The letter, which was sent in response to a complaint from IFA website ifabonus, says IFAs have to be realistic about what the FSA can do in light of the European agenda, a more litigious society and the growth of the consumer movement.
Kenmir says the FSA remains committed to working with IFAs if they are prepared to accept their obligations.
Next week, Kenmir is meeting eight IFAs at a Money Marketing round table to address problems in the IFA/regulator relationship.
Kenmir says: “Over the last few years, the FSA has madea concerted effort to help IFAs cope with day-to-day regulation. My role as sector leader for retail intermediaries, which includes IFAs, is about building on all the work that we have done so far and making sure we deal with IFA issues as quickly and efficiently as possible.”
IFAbonus editor Stephen Pett says: “The basic problem is that the FSA sadly believes that IFAs do not normally treat clients fairly, do not want to comply with regulation or influence the regulatory process and only have their own interests at heart.”