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Platforms push for FSA clarity

Providers are urging the FSA to speed up the delivery of its platform paper so it arrives in time to inform their response to the retail distribution review.

A number of platforms are waiting on the FSA’s platform review before submitting their responses to the latest RDR consultation paper, which are due by October 30.

Fidelity says it has concerns over the time it is taking to publish the paper as it prevents the firm from making concrete development plans.

A spokeswoman says: “We suggest that no product provider can properly respond to the RDR consultation paper without knowing what is in the platform consultation paper. The two need to be aligned. There is plenty of time for developments but we need to know what they are as soon as possible.”

Henderson New Star technical director Stewart Cazier says there are a number of major issues that need to be ironed out before platforms are able to progress.

He says: “There are very direct issues, such as whether or not fees collected by a platform for administration are consid- ered as commission for RDR purposes. Then there are also issues over the status of platforms, with some viewing themselves purely as administration vehicles while others, such as Cofunds, are now looking to offer guided architecture which is more than that.”

Cofunds marketing and proposition director Alastair Conway says: “There are issues that need to be looked at, such as the difference between what an IFA offers a client and a platform charge for delivery and service of the product, which is not the same.”

An FSA spokesman would not commit to publishing the platform paper before October 30.

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