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Platform policy delay as FSA rethinks rebate ban

Platform providers and IFAs have welcomed the FSA’s decision to delay its platform policy statement and are urging the regulator to spend time reconsidering its proposed ban on cash rebates.

Last week, the regulator announced it expects to publish the policy statement in the third quarter rather than the second quarter this year.

In November, the FSA published its consultation paper on platforms, which proposed a ban on cash rebates to clients from providers’ product charges if they offset, or appeared to offset, an adviser charge.

All the main platform providers, excluding Skandia, submitted a group response to outline their opposition to the cash rebate ban in February.

Axa Elevate distribution director Shaun Sandiford says: “The delay on the consultation paper is a welcome one. Clear leadership of thought and intention are required and if a third-quarter revised deadline delivers this, then it will be great news for IFA firms, traditional providers and wrap operators alike.”

Nucleus chief executive David Ferguson says: “The decision to delay is probably not a great surprise. I would welcome the delay if it is going to result in a rational outcome from the regulator.”

Forty Two Wealth Management partner Alan Dick says: “It would be completely bonkers if the FSA banned cash rebates. I only hope it is delaying the statement to consider going back on the proposal.”

An FSA spokeswoman says: “The platform paper will be published as soon as possible. This complex area prompted a number of detailed responses to the consultation and we are keen to ensure that each of those submissions is properly evaluated.”

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