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PFS president: More prescriptive FSA could help RDR-readiness

Garry Hale PFS 480

Personal Finance Society president Garry Hale says some firms would be helped by a more prescriptive FSA as they struggle to transition their business to comply with the RDR.

Hale (pictured), managing director of financial planning firm HK Wealth Managers, was appointed PFS president for 2012/13 earlier this month, succeeding Time4advice director Jon Everill.

Hale says there are “definite concerns” about whether some firms have ensured their business is sustainable post-RDR.

He says: “We have not been helped by the lack of clarity from the regulator up until recently on issues such as what independent and restricted looks like and the situation with regards to VAT. That drip-feeding of information has probably hindered firms making definitive decisions.

“To be honest, some firms would benefit from being told ‘do A, B, and C and you will be in order for the RDR’. The regulator has given guidelines, as it always does, but often issues are not made 100 per cent clear. The FSA is trying to help but it is open to advisers’ interpretation, it is not prescriptive.”

Capital Asset Management chief executive Alan Smith says: “A lot of firms could be in for a rude awakening next year. The FSA needs to support advisers through this period of transition.”

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