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Turner tipped to be FSA chairman

A top regulatory consultant has warned that if Adair Turner – a front-runner for the post of chairman of the FSA – gets the job, he may be less swayed by industry feedback than current chairman Sir Callum McCarthy.

Beachcroft Regulatory Consulting managing director Richard Hobbs says Turner has a determined view of the world.

Hobbs says: “I believe he will set the agenda in a more determined way than Callum did. I am not saying that he will not seek industry feedback but what he does with that feedback remains to be seen.’ He considers that Turner, who is a former director general of the CBI will “know his mind”.

It is believed that Turner’s appointment will be announ-ced over the next two weeks and he will take over from McCarthy when he steps down in September.

Turner is chairman of the Government’s committee on climate change and is believed to be unwilling to give up that post. Hobbs says Turner may struggle to juggle the time commitment demanded by the two positions.

He says: “He is already on the climate change committee, which takes up three days a week of his time but the chairman role requires three days a week also.”

Turner headed the Pensions Commission, which recommended many aspects of personal accounts.

Cicero director Iain Anderson does not agree Turner would be less open to industry feedback. He says: “I do not think he comes out either for or against the industry. It is vital that whoever takes the position is open to dialogue with the sector. It is a balanced brief – one has a statutory responsibility to manage the sector but also to engage with consumer lobby groups.”

Baronworth director Colin Jackson says it is essential that the chairman of the regulator is open to feedback. He says: “We do not want someone coming in and making huge decisions without taking the views of the industry on board.”

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