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FCA considers externally accredited staff training

Lord Sassoon
Lord Sassoon in the House of Lords

Treasury commercial secretary Lord James Sassoon says the FCA is considering the introduction of externally accredited training courses for its staff.

Speaking in the House of Lords yesterday, Treasury commercial secretary Lord James Sassoon said the training of staff is a matter for the regulator, but that both the PRA and FCA have plans to go further than the FSA.

He was responding to a question tabled by Tory peer Lord Howard Flight asking whether the Government is considering forcing regulatory staff to take qualifying exams.

Sassoon said: “The Government should appoint an appropriate board with experience and then it is rightfully up to the two successor bodies on how to equip their staff properly to do their job.

“The FSA’s approach to testing and competence of its staff is going to be continued by the FCA. The FCA is also exploring whether to have training externally accredited which is something the FSA has not done up to this point. The PRA is developing a comprehensive strategy including a three-year training programme for new graduates. It is being taken extremely seriously.”

Flight blasted the “inconsistency” of the FSA for forcing advisers to take exams under the RDR but not the regulators.

He said: “There are no examinations required to be passed by people working as regulators whereas the regulators, under the RDR reforms, are requiring all financial advisers irrespective of age, cleanness of record and experience to take examinations.”

Labour peers Lord Peston and Baroness Haytor backed Flight’s calls for more regulator exams. Peston said the FCA and PRA are set to be the most powerful regulators in UK history and staff need qualifications. Haytor argued that regulators, along with the industry, need to take ethical exams to abide by a new code of conduct in light of the Libor scandal.

Clayden Associates director Dan Clayden says: “There is going to be a cost involved and it will be passed on to the industry so it should be consulted on. There is no demand for it. The regulator’s job is to set rules and make sure we adhere to them, and I don’t think the staff need an external set of exams to be able to do it.”

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Comments

There are 9 comments at the moment, we would love to hear your opinion too.

  1. To right !!
    They should be at least level 4 the same as us and they should be made to pay for the exams out of their own pockets (like us) and prepare for them in thier own time (like us).

    The ability to bend down and tie your shoe lace is the kind or training they have been given so far.

    I feel a McDonalds joke comming on !!

  2. Too late if the FSA had qualified staff then RDR would never have been envisaged. The staff in Canary Wharf are all tick box mentality.If the staff have to be qualified then no one would work for the regulator it would be too hard for them to learn what the real world is like.

  3. How about the FOS? They don’t even apply common sense when when making their decisions to uphold complaints!!

  4. Hello Playmates!

    Ha, ha, ha! Gasp! Ha, ha, ha! Gasp! Ha, ha, ha! Gasp! Ha, ha, ha! Gasp! Ha, ha, ha! Gasp! Ha, ha, ha! Gasp! Ha, ha, ha! Gasp! Ha, ha, ha! Gasp! Ha, ha, ha! Gasp! Ha, ha, ha! Gasp! Short intake of breath. Ha, ha, ha! Gasp! Ha, ha, ha! Gasp! Ha, ha, ha! Gasp! Ha, ha, ha! Gasp!

    Of course the FSA is doing all this damage – they’re not qualified to run a pub, let alone a regulator.

    Love

    Larrykins xxxx

  5. Make them all take the level 4 route, RO1-RO6 which they have to pay for themselves and let’s see how many stay with the regulator. After all, that is only fair, that the people who have cost us so much money and time, have to suffer the same indignities.

    Oh I forgot, we have to pay for everything now don’t we ?

    How could any regulatory body even conceive of employing staff who deal with advisers and advising firms, who cannot achieve level 4 and for more complex supervision, level 6.

    As for McDonalds jokes, don’t even think about it, those people had to be properly trained and accredited to prepare and cook food. These numpties couldn’t boil an egg without having a tick list of what to do.

    One has to be agog at the gall of a regulatory body, who doesn’t train its staff properly, so that they understand what products are, what they are designed to do, how the financial planning process works and how a recommendation should be constructed.

    And Now they want us to pay for their “training”

    I wonder how it would work.

    Mr Candidate, we have to ensure you have sufficient knowledge of financial services to pursue your supervisory role. Question – Do you have a bank account ? Answer – Yes.

    Job done, you can be a supervisor.

  6. It’d no doubt be pointless to highlight the asymmetry of the argument; not all regulators regulate advisers, and the skill set to investigate and judge is different to that required to advise clients.

  7. Probably less than 100 staff look after regulated advice at the FSA, the vast majorty of the remainder are prob economists, accountants, lawyers etc who are qualified through the roof.

  8. @Adam Smith
    If I wanted a solicitor to assess another solicitors work, I would expect him to know how to do the work in the first place.

  9. Dan Clayden says: “There is going to be a cost involved and it will be passed on to the industry so it should be consulted on. There is no demand for it. The regulator’s job is to set rules and make sure we adhere to them, and I don’t think the staff need an external set of exams to be able to do it.”

    Yeah – right! (stupid man!)

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