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FSA warned not to set bar too high for entrants

Leading IFA chiefs believe that insisting on chartered status could discourage new entrants from coming into the industry.

At a Money Marketing RDR round table, Sesame chief executive Ivan Martin issued a warning to the FSA that raising the bar too high could scare away new entrants.

Martin said improving the perception of the industry by raising standards would draw more consumers to seek advice, whether through a qualification or ano-ther method, but he said that chartered financial planner status is too high.

He said: “I think chartered status is not necessarily appropriate. We have said diploma level would be a very good thing to aim for.

“If you are saying everybody has got to be up there, what environment have you got to encourage young people to aspire to come into this industry?”

Tenet chief executive Simon Hudson said having firms of generalist and specialist advisers would bring in new people without alienating advisers on the brink of retiring who might reject the idea of retraining.

He said: “It is the only way the consumer is going to get confidence. You need to create the model where there will be specialist people out there but not everybody wants to. Your guy retiring at 54 does not want to become a specialist, he just wants to be a general practitioner probably.

“There is this view coming out that everybody has to climb to the top of the tree. Why? No other business has got that in it.”

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