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Radical rethink to give public greater choice

Sweeping changes to the polarisation regime will end many restrictions on what business a firm can conduct.

The FSA proposes removing the barriers to choice in draft regulations for the depolarised world, which could become a reality by the end of the year. Multi-ties are created, gap-filling is allowed, the better than best rule is scrapped and white-labelling of products is banned.

The only obligations on IFAs will be that they must give advice on the whole market and offer consumers the choice of paying fees.

Firms and advisers will be allowed to become tied, multi-tied and independent, including within the same firm, as long as the service provided to consumers is made clear in a box-ticking disclosure document.

There are no limits to the number of providers that multi-ties can tie to and distributors can tie to a provider for all or some of its products.

Multi-tied panels will not have to be made up of the best available on the marketplace. There is no obligation for them to be reviewed and they can be changed at any time.

During the sales process, a multi-tied adviser can make a recommendation “out of range” of their ties although this is left to the management&#39s discretion.

Appointed representatives must continue to do business only with providers approved by their single principal but are not prevented from moving principal or becoming directly regulated.


Widows goes into gobbledegook to slash payouts

IFAs are accusing Scottish Widows of going against the spirit of the Raising Standards initiative with its “opaque” with-profits bonus declaration which sees many payouts cut by up to 22 per cent and others getting no terminal bonus.Widows, a front-runner in the ABI initiative which extols the virtues of plain English, has been attacked for […]

All change for £20m Raising Standards scheme

FSA managing director John Tiner has stoked fears that the Raising Standards initiative could become redundant, claiming it is based on the old regulatory regime which is about to be overhauled.Despite saying he was pleased with the progress of the initiative, Tiner, speaking at the Raising Standards annual conference, said a new regime dubbed “son […]

Legg Mason mirrors US fund

Legg Mason Investments has created the US equity fund, a unit trust that is managed by US-based fund manager Bill Miller. This unit trust is an onshore mirror of the offshore value fund, which is in turn a mirror of Miller&#39s fund for US investors, the Legg Mason value trust. Miller has managed the Legg […]

Compulsion is only way, warns Aussie supremo

Price caps fail to work in a complicated distribution system like the UK and only serve to damage the market according to the architect of the Australian compulsory pension system.Senator Nick Sherry, currently the Australian shadow minister for retirement incomes and savings but was previously the minister in the last Labour government, also says compulsion […]

Finding security in bond markets

Martin Foden, head of credit research at Royal London Asset Management, explores the role of secured bonds, considering the impact of default and the characteristics of secured bonds versus supranationals and highlighting some examples. He also examines the evolution of the credit market and rating agency inefficiencies. Read the article in full: The value of […]


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