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Network changes website wording

IFA network Financial Limited has changed the wording on its website amid concerns that some of it could have breached financial promotion guidelines.

The website featured a claim that collective investments are almost guaranteed to make money. When Financial Limited’s managing director realised this, he admitted it was an error by a website editor.

The firm’s website stated: “Investing for the long term in stocks and shares, whether directly or through collective investments like unit trusts, is almost guaranteed to make money over long periods.”

This has now been amended to read: “Investing for the long term in stocks and shares, whether directly or through collective investments like unit trusts, can make money over long periods.”

The FSA rules on financial promotions, which include website content, insist that product descriptions must include a description of the risks associated with the product.

The Cob rules also outline that past performance must not be used as a blanket indicator to current performance of investment products without specific caveats.

Managing director Charles Palmer says: “We should not be using the word “guarantee” in this context and when we found out we had, it was amended immediately.”

FSA spokeswoman Sam Bennett says: “Our rules state that financial promotions must be clear, fair and not misleading. They must also offer a balanced view of the product or service.”

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