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Most IFAs back Aifa on CP121 tactics

Aifa&#39s declaration this week that its battle tactics on CP121 will be to concentrate on detail rather than on the main principle of polarisation has split IFA opinion.

Some have condemned the tactics, claiming Aifa should focus on attacking the proposals on principle, but most seem to concede that a more pragmatic app-roach should be adopted.

In a show of hands, a minority of IFAs at the Money Marketing IFA UK conference in Brighton last week wanted to fight for polarisation on principle but most accepted Aifa&#39s view.

Aifa says it will focus on how the present proposals slant regulation against independents and the unworkability of the defined-payment system. It has also commissioned a researcher to scrutinise the FSA&#39s findings.

IFAs supporting Aifa say the key battleground is the right to retain the word independent while offering clients a commission option.

Director general Paul Smee says: “Some would like us just to shout a lot but the reality is that a lot of IFAs and providers are talking. We must attack CP121&#39s flimsy foundations. We need to attack the detail. The defined-payment system is a mess and we must point out the unfairness of differential regulation. By attacking this detail, we are undermining the whole FSA case.”

Barton Pryor Associates partner Lee Pryor says: “Preserving the word independent is more important than preserving polarisation.”

•Comment, p35

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