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Regulation is threat to the future

Aegon survey reveals concerns over growing burden

Nearly nine out of 10 IFAs think the burden of regulation is a threat to the future of the IFA industry.

An Aegon survey of 100 advisers shows that 79 per cent believe the difficulty in recruiting the right type of people is a serious or potential threat while 88 per cent say the burden of regulation is a more pressing concern.

But 95 per cent think that independent financial advice is more important than ever because the wide range of products available can be confusing for consumers.

The quarterly research has been launched by Aegon to gauge IFA opinion on industry issues and the firm believes it will be important in the light of the FSA’s review of retail distribution.

Eighty six per cent of IFAs think people are put off from joining the industry because other sectors are more exciting and 73 per cent believe career development opportunities are limited.

Fifty-nine per cent believe consumers view the IFA industry as increasingly outdated and unnecessary.

Aegon UK chief executive Otto Thoresen says: “Our research paints a picture of an IFA profession that is very clear about the importance of its role in helping people develop a financial plan for life and that sees itself as increasingly relevant as the long-term savings market develops despite new sources of information such as the internet.

“But it also highlights that IFAs are particularly concerned about the growing burden of regulation on their business. They also believe a greater level of understanding of their professional status and moves to rebuild trust in the industry would encourage more people to seek financial advice.”

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