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Head of FSA consumer panel to join OFT

FSA consumer panel chairman Colin Brown is quitting his role after just two-and-a-half years to take up a post with the Office of Fair Trading.

Brown will depart six months earlier than expected on November 1. He will be replaced by Ann Foster, who has been vice-chairman of the panel since January 1, 2001.

Brown is best known for his recommendation to the FSA that it should limit its plans for depolarisation to stakeholder pensions and execution-only business during phase one of the review in 2001. The FSA followed his advice.

He has been a firm opponent of the proposed sales regime for the Sandler suite of products and has warned several times that a filtered-questionled approach could lead to widespread misselling of products.

In January, the consumer panel called for a statutory review of the FSA&#39s legislative authority, claiming it was not provided with enough powers to protect consumers from misleading advertising.

At the OFT, Brown will be responsible for ensuring that self-regulated industries do not fall foul of their codes of practice.

Outgoing FSA chairman Sir Howard Davies says: “We wish Colin very well in his new and important role at the OFT. He has provided dedicated and effective leadership for the panel since his appointment two-and-a-half years ago.”

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