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RDR exam structure “not fit for purpose”, says threesixty

IFA services provider threesixty has called for a review of the RDR examination structure, calling it “not fit for purpose”.

The firm says IFAs are in the “impossible position” of being required to demonstrate a full understanding of certain complex products despite there being no recognised exam for them to take to demonstrate their knowledge.

It also says if new exams are introduced covering specialist investment, such as structured products and unregulated collective investment schemes, it would result in IFAs having to take more exams than restricted advisers.

Technical director David Ingram has called for the exam structure to be reviewed.

He says: “With no relevant exam IFAs will only be able to point to their experience to demonstrate understanding, however the FSA does not want grandfathering.

“But if the proposed new exams are introduced post-RDR, when all IFAs have their level 4 exams and have gap filled, it will be easy for the FSA to require evidence in the form of an exam pass – leaving IFAs having to take more exams than restricted advisers.”

Ingram adds that advisers who wish to advise on specialist investments should be made to obtain special permissions.

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There is one comment at the moment, we would love to hear your opinion too.

  1. Agree, demonstrating an understanding is different to hitting an academic level, demonstrating understanding of a process which is absolutely in line with the work done by any particular individual would raise competence if competence was not already at a sufficient standard.

    Behaviour is a different animal, that would require auditing of work to ensure a change in behaviour.

    They identified an issue which most would not disagree with, however then rushed to find an off the peg solution and were swayed by individuals with academic interests.

    All of this research has already been done by other professions, they simply needed to read it from start to finish and apply the same here, what could be simpler?

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