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Nicholls rallying small advisers to answer RDR call

Outgoing Personal Finance Society president Carole Nicholls has issued a rallying cry for members to respond individually to the RDR and not rely on vested interests or the PFS to voice their concerns.

Speaking at the PFS conference in Birmingham this week, in her last speech as president, Nicholls warned that small advisers could be particularly exposed by the findings of the RDR. But she said if 4,000 small advisers responded to the discussion paper, the FSA could not ignore their voice as it has pledged to carry out an industry-led review.

She told Money Marketing that advisers were completely wrong to rely on their network, support services provider or national IFA – who all have their own vested interests – to respond to the RDR and that the only way to ensure that their opinion is heard is to respond themselves.

Nicholls said members were putting their heads in the sand by not responding to the RDR either because they think it will not happen or that their opinion will not make a difference.

She said the PFS would only be responding to the RDR in terms of professionalism and raising standards as other areas such as individual business concerns of a small adviser were outside its remit.

Nicholls said she was disappointed that only 6 per cent of PFS members have respon-ded to the RDR.

She said: As professional people, we should be at the head of that change. We should be leading it rather than putting our heads in the sand and saying it is going to go away.”

Vice-president of the CII Peter Williams told the conf-erence that the ISO22222 standard will be a bridge to bring together different types of examinations in light of the RDR although he stressed that chartered status is the standard that advisers should strive to achieve.

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