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Apfa says FCA RDR concerns are ‘teething problems’

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Apfa director general Chris Hannant

Apfa believes the Financial Conduct Authority’s review into how advisers are implementing the RDR shows firms have made good progress, and argues issues around charging disclosure are just “teething problems”.

In its findings today on how advisers have adapted to the RDR, the FCA said it was concerned about the way some advisers are explaining charges to clients and that restricted firms are not being clear enough about their status.

But Apfa director general Chris Hannant says the review is largely positive about advisers, given the scale of the RDR changes.

He says: “One issue raised is around the clarity of charging by firms. It is early days, but a lot of progress has been made in a short period with many firms acting in line with the rules. However, it is to be expected that in adapting to new ways of charging there will be some teething issues as companies refine the way they operate.

“The review also questions how firms represent themselves with regard to being independent or restricted. Our experience is that companies are very definite about the models they are now operating. It is clear however that for customers, there is need for improvement and greater clarity around the distinctions.

“We will be looking closely at the FCA’s research to see how we can help members learn from good practice in this area.”

Hannant added the regulator has recognised many advisers have got to grips with the RDR, and that this should now be translated into lower adviser fees.

He says: “Support from the FCA on this will not only help the adviser sector recover numbers, but also ensure it can look after its clients to the best of its ability.”

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Comments

There are 6 comments at the moment, we would love to hear your opinion too.

  1. “Hannant added the regulator has recognised many advisers have got to grips with the RDR, and that this should now be translated into lower adviser fees.”

    It was a good article until the above sentence. Lower adviser fees? Can’t see it myself in my lifetime with the present attitude of the FCA.
    What we have is a regulator more worried about triviality and tick boxes rather than making sure the financial services sector is a healthy growing industry.

  2. I think this is good progress for both advisory firms and the FCA. I’ve seen articles elsewhere about what is good and not so good practice and to be fair, the gap does not appear massive. So more feedback as to what the FCA wants to see can only be a good thing.

    My only hope is that fine detail doesn’t dominate the substance and more importantly, have an unintendedly detrimental effect on the end user; the client.

    I think IFA firms in general have made massive effort and achieved much since the RDR was first mooted five or six years ago. This despite a not inconsiderable amount of uncertainty, frequent change of direction, ever increasing costs and a bit of a financial crisis through which to guide clients.

    Let’s hope a positive approach can be engendered all round as it is more likely to bring about good results.

  3. Lower fees?
    Are you rooted on planet earth, man or away with the fairies?
    It sounds like he’s toadying to the FCA who constantly bleat on about the matter. Such an irony when all we see is a greater and greater budget at canary towers, to achieve what?……..err I’ll leave that for others to answer.

  4. Lower advice fees?????
    Get real wheatley.
    Lower regulation costs would need to come first and that is NEVER going to happen now is it????

  5. Perhaps Chris should discuss this with his council before he makes such public statements

  6. Clearly the FSA is NOT of the opinion that the progress firms have made in adapting to the requirements of the RDR is good and what the FSA says is what goes. As far as the FSA is concerned, what APFA thinks is neither here nor there.

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