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Restricting the market

Openwork believes the FSA’s “restricted advice” label could put people off seeking financial advice.

After consultation with members, Openwork’s RDR response says the restricted label has negative connotations and may distort the advice market which could put the FSA’s objectives on access fundamentally at risk.

It says: “The key to consumers being clear about the difference between an adviser who is required to look at the whole of market and one who is not, is in the disclosure. We believe only one label – ‘financial adviser’ – is required, with a clear description of the available solution range.”

Openwork calls for the FSA to specify a core range of products that could be recommended under the “simplified advice” process which could include Isas, investment bonds, Oeics/Unit trusts and stakeholder/personal pensions.

It says the “simplified advice” stream could be an entry-level step into financial advice with a lower qualification threshold, helping to draw new advisers into the industry. It could also help address the needs of the mass market.

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