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The state of the IFA nation is healthy

IFAs are optimistic about their business prospects and see only other

IFAs as serious rivals to their market dominance, according to

exclusive research for Money Marketing and Virgin One.

The State of the IFA Nation survey of Money Marketing readers,

conducted in association with Virgin One, shows 84 per cent of IFAs

are optimistic about their future business.

Banks are seen as IFAs&#39 biggest competitors for business after rival

IFA firms, with 30 per cent of the 280 responses saying they posed

the biggest threat.

The poll was conducted before the FSA&#39s polarisation proposals were

announced, which many IFAs believe will hand control of the market

over to the high-street banks.

Internet operations, including direct fund supermarkets were the next

biggest threat with 15 per cent of the vote.

Despite the proliferation of bank-based wealth management services,

only 13 per cent said these were an IFA&#39s most significant business

rival. Seventy-nine per cent of IFAs say they will be able to take

advantage of rising prosperity among consumers.

The picture does not change much for prediction for five years time,

with 49 per cent of IFAs saying their main competition will still be

other IFA businesses.

Banks are still be seen as a big threat but IFAs are predicting that

fund supermarkets will come to greater prominence, with 26 per cent

saying they will be an IFA&#39s main competitor in five years.

Bank wealth management services would still not be giving IFAs too

much concern, with only 15 per cent considering that they would be a

threat in five years.

Jamieson Financial Management principal Bruce Jamieson says: “Wealth

management services, fund supermarkets and banks are not going to

trouble me. We have had to contend with banks for years. We are going

down the authorised adviser route and will carry on regardless.”

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