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Labour: ABI warns new regulations could restrict advice

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Association of British Insurers director general Otto Thoreson has warned the Financial Conduct Authority’s regulatory agenda could end up restricting access to advice.

Under the draft Financial Services Bill, the FCA will have a primary objective to protect and enhance confidence in the financial system, with secondary objectives of providing an “appropriate degree” of consumer protection, promoting efficiency and choice in the market. It must deliver these objectives in a way which promotes competition whenever possible.

Speaking to Money Marketing at the Labour party conference in Liverpool this week, Thoreson said access to advice and financial services is not high up enough on the FCA’s agenda and could end up being sidelined as it works to deliver on its objectives.

He said: “The FCA agenda seems to underplay the importance of access to advice and access to financial services for consumers. There is a risk that the FCA goes too far down the road of controlling and constraining the delivery of financial services at the cost of access for people to those services.”

The draft bill is currently undergoing pre-legislative scrutiny in the House of Commons.

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Comments

There are 3 comments at the moment, we would love to hear your opinion too.

  1. A dissenting voice ? Hopefully the first of many.

  2. I would agree with this comment, although I also believe that the regulator is trying to come up with a restricted advice model that only benefits the banks and building societies and does little for consumer protection.

    The only way our industry is to move on is to recognise that we need qualified individuals who can give full advise and for our regulator and consumers to recognise that this will need to be paid for. I also believe that the regulator needs to give greater emphasis on protecting the term ADVICE and should look to fine and prosecute any individuals and companies found to be giving advice without the necessary authorisation and qualifications. The only way to attract new people into Financial Sevices is to make sure that we have a product and service that the general public both want and need. I am of the firm belief that pensions and Life Insurance do not sell themselves.

  3. Peter – I love the naivety that you think will actually do the right thing! It’s a done deal, destroy the IFA market and the massive loss in IFA business means that with contraction of service to Banks, the regulator will only have to deal with one business model – (take note networks – like turkeys at Christmas,you voted for the slaughter!) This means the FSA can streamline their regulatory business and still have access to ‘plum jobs’ in the banking sector using the ‘revolving door’ process ie work for bank, work for regulator, work for bank, work for regulator – get Knighthood etc

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