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Public platform access could pose problems

Advisers who give clients access to platforms to carry out direct trades may be putting them at risk, warns Perception director Phil Billingham.

He says he is concerned that consumers may not fully understand the regulatory risks involved in investing in unregulated products available on many platforms. He says platforms were designed as business-to-business tools and fund firms do not intend the public to use them.

Billingham says: “IFAs have been very cautious about giving clients access to platforms so it is only a small problem right now but in a year’s time it could be a very big one.”

Transact says it now requires evidence that a client has completed a sophisti- cated investor certificate or a Cobs4 notice before they can trade directly in unregulated collective investments.

Head of marketing Malcolm Murray says: “The Transact-Online program identifies whether a form has been completed and if it has not, then the trans- action will fail.”

Zen Financial Services IFA Mike Pendergast says that most advisers only give clients access to valuations.

He says: “I do not see the point in giving the client access to do what the IFA should be doing.”


I was thanked by the lender that undercut me

I recently received an email from Woolwich thanking me for some recent cases which I have submitted to them. I quote: “We wanted to take this opportunity to thank you for your business over the last six months, an unprecedented period for all of us continuing to trade in the mortgage market.”

Bubbling along

Commodity prices are again rallying after some sharp falls in recent weeks.

Ifs School sets diploma at £500

The Ifs School of Finance says its new QCA level 4 equivalent diploma for financial advisers will cost £500. It believes advisers should be able to achieve the DipFA within a year.

Bright Grey turns to tele-interviews

Bright Grey plans to use tele-interviews rather than GP reports to gather medical evidence directly from its clients in partnership with Medicals Direct Group.


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