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‘Portal check rule is unworkable’

The FSA is to require IFAs using a portal or sourcing system to put in extra checks to ensure that they are considering the whole of the market.

The move, revealed in the RDR feedback paper, is part of plans to tighten up the definition of independence.

The FSA says if one provider’s products are available on a portal because they have paid a fee and another firm’s plans are missing because they have not paid a fee, using this system alone would not “satisfy conditions for a comprehensive or fair analysis of the market”.

However, CBK Colchester principal Peter Chadborn says it is “so unworkable” to enforce such a requirement on IFAs that it would have to be up to the portal to put measures in place.

He says: “If the FSA is going to enforce this, every portal knows they are going to have to cover whole of market and rethink their strategy. The portal will have to negotiate to get every provider on that portal.”

Financial Technology Research Centre director Ian McKenna says: “The FSA needs to introduce some obligation on providers to make information readily available to avoid undermining the advice process.”


The odd decouple

The MSCI emerging markets benchmark has fallen by over 60 per cent this year as the sector shows it is not immune to the economic storm.


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